Make room for country music. It’s here to stay.
First Posted: 10/7/2014
Taylor Swift is set to release her fifth studio album, 1989, on October 27. Swift is adamant that opposed to previous LPs which contained songs that fit in to multiple genres, her forthcoming will be a strictly “pop album.” However, just because the songstress isn’t deliberately catering to country fans, doesn’t mean country artists aren’t supporting her latest music.
“It’s a catchy song. We love her,” Lady Antebellum guitarist Dave Haywood told “Ralphie Tonight.” “We’ve known her and think she’s such a talented artist. I think it’s exciting to watch her go through these journeys. I mean, she’s young, so you’re watching her grow up in all sorts of different ways.”
“I mean over the past four years she’s been a pop act, to be honest with you,” added vocalist/guitarist Charles Kelley. ”So, I don’t think it was any giant shock or anything. But yunno for me and for us, we’ve said it a million times, as long as it’s great, that’s all that matters. And she keeps making great music.”
The country trio knows a thing or two about that. “Lady A” dropped 747, its sixth album, last week. The first single “Bartender” already hit number one on the country chart.
“It’s definitely a departure,” Kelley noted of the LP’s sound – which is evident in the aforementioned single and other tracks like “Freestyle.” “Working with a new producer in and of itself helps so much but I feel like the songs are a little stronger than the past couple of records.”
Kelley says for the band, it’s their favorite record since Need You Now.
“We feel like we rededicated ourselves to the songwriting process and also too, trying to take some chances,” he continued. “We definitely feel like this is a completely more amped up record.”
Such was evident last week during a performance by Lady Antebellum in New York City, streamed live on Yahoo. During the performance, a guy rushed the stage, and it turns out that it may be more than a simple security lapse or overzealous fan.
“It wasn’t planned, but we know the guy,” Kelley revealed. “We have a little surprise… you can’t get the rest of the story yet. It’s kind of a funny tie-in for some stuff we’ve got coming up, so stay tuned.”
That shouldn’t come as a surprise, as country music is everywhere these days. Record and ticket sales are still strong and it’s tough to turn on the TV without seeing a country music star on national TV from Blake Shelton and Keith Urban on reality competitions, Carrie Underwood singing the “Sunday Night Football” theme, or countless other musicians performing on talk shows.
“I honestly too I think it’s just because every single one of us, whether it’s on our phones or on our laptops, iPads, whatever… we have any kind of music at our fingertips,” singer Hillary Scott said. “So we can explore different genres from different decades. It’s just making I think everyone’s musical influences kind of all melt together.”