Blake Shelton is known for mouthing off, and his latest target is, somewhat surprisingly, country music purists and older music fans.

In a recently updated GAC: Backstory interview examined by the Saving Country Music blog, Blake holds forth on the meaning of his status as the country music’s reigning Male Vocalist Of The Year, and goes off on country music’s purists as well older music fans. Thanks to the SCM blog for transcribing:

If I am “Male Vocalist of the Year” that must mean that I’m one of those people now that gets to decide if it moves forward and if it moves on. Country music has to evolve in order to survive. Nobody wants to listen to their grandpa’s music. And I don’t care how many of these old farts around Nashville going, “My God, that ain’t country!” Well that’s because you don’t buy records anymore, jackass. The kids do, and they don’t want to buy the music you were buying.

See video of Blake making those comments here (the quoted part begins at the 14:25 mark)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvbkbuxTd5c

Blake’s comments are surprising considering that his 2007 album Pure BS included a song he cowrote called “The Last Country Song,” and brought in John Anderson and George Jones for features:

Further, as a member of the Grand Ole Opry (he was inducted in 2010), Blake has a special responsibility to honor country music’s roots and history. Then again, Blake has shown his appreciation to the Grand Ole Opry by not playing there a single time in 2012 (to name another current country star, Carrie Underwood, Opry member since 2008, played 8 shows at the Opry in 2012 despite an intense schedule that included a full album promo tour that took her overseas, plus 62 tour dates).

Blake’s comment about winning an industry award being a sign he gets to help decide the direction of the genre is also drawing attention. The fact that he is also now CMA’s Entertainer Of The Year (an honor most agree was due mainly to his presence on The Voice and not due to the quality or sales of his music) is likely something he sees as even more of an endorsement of his power and direction. That would help explain why the lead single from his upcoming album, “Sure Be Cool If You Did” continues in the adult contemporary pop power ballad direction of a lot of his previous album Red River Blue. But seeing as Blake’s most recent regular studio album was outsold by subsequent releases from Scotty McCreery, Eric Church, Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, and Carrie Underwood, is he as influential as he thinks?

Legendary artist and Country Music Hall Of Fame inductee Ray Price, who has enjoyed a 60+ year career in the country genre, took to his Facebook page this afternoon to respond to Blake’s comments:

It’s a shame that I have spend 63 years in this business trying to introduce music to a larger audience and to make it easier for the younger artists who are coming behind me. Every now and then some young artist will record a rock and roll type song , have a hit first time out with kids only. This is why you see stars come with a few hits only and then just fade away believing they are God’s answer to the world. This guy sounds like in his own mind that his head is so large no hat ever made will fit him. Stupidity Reigns Supreme!!!!!!! Ray Price (CHIEF “OLD FART” & JACKASS”) ” P.S. YOU SHOULD BE SO LUCKY AS US OLD-TIMERS. CHECK BACK IN 63 YEARS (THE YEAR 2075) AND LET US KNOW HOW YOUR NAME AND YOUR MUSIC WILL BE REMEMBERED.

Last year, after Eric Church’s controversial comments to Rolling Stone slamming Blake for going on The Voice and letting celebrity overshadow his music, Miranda Lambert went after Eric on Twitter, further spotlighting an obnoxious comment he made about not wanting to play for 80 year olds. Will Miranda take her husband to task for dissing the same group of people?

Blake’s comments have also sparked quite a bit of backlash in online country communities, but do you see that extending beyond the fans into the industry? Do you think he has a point about country music or older music fans, or do you think Blake’s Voice experience and industry support has gone to his head?

UPDATED: Blake tweeted the following:

Whoa!!! I heard I offended one of my all time favorite artists Ray Price by my statement “Nobody wants to listen to their grandpas music”..And probably some other things from that same interview on GAC Backstory.. I hate that I upset him.. The truth is my statement was and STILL Is about how we as the new generation of country artists have to keep re-inventing country music to keep it popular. Just EXACTLY…The way Mr. Price did along hid journey as a main stream country artist.. Pushing the boundaries with his records. “For The Goodtimes” is a Perfect example with the introduction of a bigger orchestrated sound in country music.. It was new and awesome!!! I absolutely have no doubt I could have worded it better(as always ha!) and I apologize to Mr. Price and any other heroes of mine that it may offended..I meant every word I said. Country music is my life and it’s future AND past is important to me. I’ll put my Lo e and respect and knowledge About it up against anybody out there… ANYBODY…

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000075236182 Diana Adams Tyler

    I think his ego has gone to his head.  His personality is a lot of his success.  I think he is a good singer but his material, in general, not so great.  His marriage to Miranda also helped him a lot since her label had just started the big push for her.  Neither of them sell in big numbers compared to others although they are winning the awards now.  Award shows are more clout and politics then merit anymore anyway.  Blakes schtick gets old after a bit imo.  He needs some new comebacks on the Voice anyway.   It makes me laugh when I read that Miranda and he take separate tour buses when they are at the same venue because he gets on her nerves if they are together too much.  I paraphrased that, but in essence, thats what  her interview said.  She also said he was hard for her to love but she did it.  I think his sunny disposition ALL the time is what bugs her.  

  • quickjessie

    He absolutely has a point and it’s 100% correct.

    Music sales tell the tale.  If it sells, you’ll get more of it.  And old country doesn’t sell, simple as that. 

    I say this as one of those old fogey’s he’s talking about.  However, I do like “new country” and hate the old stuff.  Been there, done that, don’t need to do it again.

    I feel the same about AC, rock, etc.  I don’t want classic or has-been, or oldies.  Life goes on, always forward, and that’s where I’ll go until my road ends. 

    So yes, he has a point.  The old folks aren’t buying, because they’re sick of the oldies or they can’t afford it.  

  • Dusty_125

    to think country radio “vets” musicians that think like this…. while abandoning folks like Allan Jackson, George Strait, Reba to mention a few. They could care less what the consumer wants to listen to and it will come back to bite them in the rear.

  • windmills

    Yet, George Strait’s current country single Give It All We Got Tonight, currently #21 country with 16.122 million AIs on Mediabase, is currently outselling Taylor Swift’s current country single Begin Again, which is #8 country with 38.680 million AIs on MB. 

    Miranda Lambert’s group Pistol Annies released a traditional country single called Hell On Heels that got virtually no radio play but outsold her #3 peaking lead single of her current album. Hell On Heels went gold. 

    Traditional country isn’t getting the radio support it used to, but when it has, it has usually sold just as well as contemporary country. 

    Like a lot of generalizations, Blake isn’t representing the full picture. Not only is he off base, he’s being disrespectful when his status as an ambassador of the genre is supposed to make him more respectful of the people who paved the way for him. It’s ironic because 6 years ago, he wrote a song that criticized the very sentiment he’s expressing now. 

  • girlygirltoo

    It’s never wise to make generalizations, of course, but in my own personal experience, it is the older people who are more likely to actually buy music, while the younger people will either just stream it or illegally download/rip it.  So not only is Blake ticking people off (again), his generalization may not be all that accurate.

    Since I don’t listen to much country music, I won’t comment on the whole “traditional” vs “contemporary” argument :)

  • blackberryharvest

    Ugh, I find so many things wrong with that statement, I don’t even know where to start. First of all, I know plenty of older people who still buy country records. I have relatives over 60 who love George Strait.

    And George Strait’s music >>>> Blake, Taylor, etc. music. Its a crime that George wasn’t even nominated for entertainer of the year.

    Give me Brooks and Dunn(RIP), Reba, Scotty McCreery, Josh Turner, Easton Corbin, Alan Jackson, George Strait, Greg Bates, Dustin Lynch, and Tracey Lawrence over Taylor Swift and today’s “country pop” any day. There is still some great country music out there today, but I feel like it is losing its identity. Still my favorite genre, but worried that it will become more and more “adult contemporary.”

    And yes, I believe Blake has sold out and gone “Hollywood” ever since the Voice. He is doing a duet with Christina Aguilera and CeeLo Green for Christ sakes.

  • elliegrll

    Well that’s because you don’t buy records anymore, jackass. The kids do, and they don’t want to buy the music you were buying.

    True.  Which is why it makes no sense for the labels who work with AI and 19 to try to promote the AI alums to 40-50 year old women.  The people who watch the show will buy the music, at least the first album, but other people in that demo won’t support these new artists.   The younger music buyers are going to be more open to giving new artists a chance, especially new artists who are just coming off of a reality show.

  • FinalFantasy13

    I think the voice really helped blakes career.. Probably the smartest move he ever made, along with marrying Miranda.

  • Larc

    There was a time when country music could be readily identified just by hearing a couple of measures.  For the most part, those days are gone.  Instead, there are “country” singers like Taylor Swift who bear no resemblance to true country.  A lot of what is masquerading as country music often sounds no different than some pop music.  Country purists didn’t abandon country music.  Too much of country music abandoned them by becoming country only in name.

  • http://twitter.com/KatiesUVULA Katie’s Uvula

    I HATE Blake Shelton. He epitomizes “douc*ebag” for me. Always talking bad about people (remember when he tweeted about beating up a man who looks at him in a sexual way?) and then he apologizes for it after.

    Watch Blake send an apology for this saying “I didn’t mean to tell the old people to f*ck off” UGH I hate you Blake

  • DB987

    This is par for the course for Blake it is not that his point has no merit but his delivery is so often rude or crude or ill thought out that he comes off as a jerk.  I do not think he usually cares about looking like a jerk although he may this time.

  • elliegrll

    So yes, he has a point.  The old folks aren’t buying, because they’re sick of the oldies or they can’t afford it.  

    Or, they like the old music, so when they do buy, they are going to buy the old original music that they remember and love.  They aren’t going to support new artists, who are performing new music in the older style, because they’ll view those artists as just being imitators.  And they aren’t going to support new music by the older artists, even if they will still buy those artists earlier albums.  

    I think it’s a similar situation to advertisers targeting younger viewers.  Older consumers may have more money to spend, but they aren’t as open to new products or change.  They’ll buy an album that came out 20 years ago before they will buy one that was just released.

  • http://twitter.com/eilonwya10 Eilonwy

    Traditional country isn’t getting the radio support it used to, but when it has, it has usually sold just as well as contemporary country.

    So either the “old farts” do buy new music, or the young farts are willing to buy “old country.”

    Mr. Shelton’s genius in this case appears to be framing the debate in terms that are polarizing but only tangentially related to the actual facts.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1638805698 Jason Scott

    Blake is so delusional. He’s allowed his exposure on The Voice and all the industry awards go to his head. He’s forgotten that without the older musicians that came before him, he wouldn’t have a career today.

    Dude needs a reality check. Heh.

  • blackberryharvest

    Just tweeted:

     Blake Shelton ?@blakeshelton Whoa!!! I heard I offended one of my all time favorite artists Ray Price by my statement “Nobody wants to listen to their grandpas music”..

  • mad1son

    Regardless of what gets played on the radio, country music prides itself on its traditional small town, all American image. Good ol’ boys are excused for raising a little hell, but they damn sure are expected to still call their elders sir and ma’am, not old fart and jackass. I think Blake’s going to get slapped down hard this time.

  • http://twitter.com/LexieONeill Lexie O’Neill

    I haven’t had a chance to watch…but do you think Blake might have been imbibing when he said this?  Since he imbibes quite often…No excuse, maybe just an explanation.

    But then again, his latest, very bland music, would support his statements.  Speaking for myself, I buy old-fashioned country music when I can find it.  I’m supporting the newer and older traditional artists.  Can’t do much more than putting my money where my opinion lies.

  • http://twitter.com/eilonwya10 Eilonwy

    The truth is my statement was and STILL Is about how we as the new generation of country artists have to keep re-inventing country music to keep it popular.

    Then maybe you should have SAID that, Mr. Shelton. 

    I’m all in favor of not getting one’s knickers in a twist over possible nuances of an artist’s unscripted statement… but when somebody goes down the road of “old farts don’t buy music,” I don’t think Mr. Price and others were being unduly fussy about subtleties of connotation.

    Shelton was deliberately going for shock value to get attention. That’s sometimes a valid tactic for getting people to listen — but in that case, you own it or you admit you’re a jackass and STFU. You don’t try to shift blame to the offended listeners for being over-sensitive.

  • ptebwwong

    I understand Blake’s opinion. Country music is getting more mainstream which means traditional country is less popular & country pop/rock is what is usually successful on the charts & sales.

    However, it’s the way he said it which was disrespectful. By calling people “old farts” and disrespecting the numerous country artists that came before him & even idolized especially when he’s performed with some of them like Glen Campbell.

  • vdawg

    Blake and Miranda both get on my nerves these days.  I do think fame has gone to their heads.  I listen to the radio as little as possible since I cannot stand the two  companies that have ruined my local country stations ( Clear and Cumulus).  But I do still buy music and I am not young.

  • http://twitter.com/bagel08 John S

    This is the same guy who thinks Cassadee Pope should be a country singer and who thinks Raelynn is great…and now this. I fear for the future of country.

  • onebirdlover1

    I first listened to country music when Carrie Underwood won AI and it did open a whole new world of music to me….now I buy cd’s all the time. I’m no kid and like a lot of different artists. The last one I bought was Eric Church. One really can not generalize about everyones taste.

  • blackberryharvest

    Its kinda funny seeing him trying to save butt on twitter.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kateydid Katey Roemmele

    I work for a musician and we have found that over the years, it’s the young people who aren’t buying CDs much anymore, but the “old farts” still do. 

  • http://twitter.com/ladymctech ladymctech

    That is an awful comment for Blake to make. This old fart will remember it when it’s a toss up to tune into the Voice or some other program on TV. 

    PS Go Ray Price!!!!!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bug-Menot/100003601718986 Bug Menot

     “the two  companies that have ruined my local country stations ( Clear and Cumulus)”

    This is the crux of the matter. Country isn’t country and pop is filled with a bunch of no-talent performers because big media outlets control what gets played and all they care about are their numbers.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1818332757 Seth McHale

    I can cross Blake’s new album off my list. I’ll take George Jones, Merle, Johnny, Loretta, Reba and Dolly over this form of disrespect any day. Being a personality has little to do with talent and he needs to understand that. 

  • calliebeckett

    Why bother buying albums when you can buy singles? Why bother buying singles when you can get free singles promotions from itunes and Amazon? 

    Nevermind buying, why bother when you can stream music for free on youtube, soundcloud, spotify, etc?

  • MissMyEm

    I think the older people would buy music if the younger people made good music like their older predecessors.  I guess Blake didn’t watch that tribute for Hurricane Sandy.  A bunch of old farts performed.  It was the best concert I’ve ever seen.   As for his taste in music…sorry Dia fans, but she was the most boring performer on that show.   So to Blake and his opinion…I say…whatever.   I don’t watch the Voice anymore anyway.

  • elliegrll

    I think the older people would buy music if the younger people made as good music as good as their older predecessors.

    Every generation says this.  The older crowd hated the Beatles and Elvis, but their kids loved them.  And then the fans of the Beatles and Elvis hated the music that was popular among their kids.  It’s always been like that.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    “And yes, I believe Blake has sold out and gone “Hollywood” ever since the Voice. He is doing a duet with Christina Aguilera and CeeLo Green for Christ sakes.”

    I think that this criticism is a bit harsh. I’m not a country fan, but I’ve been impressed by Blake on his duet with Christina, and he sounds really good on that song. I honestly don’t think that recording that duet is evidence that Blake has sold out.

  • chillj

    Wrong, Blake. I’m an old fart and I buy music.  Old farts buy lots of stuff, and they even watch television, but are summarily dismissed in favor of young’uns with no ready cash.  We get ticked at being ignored Blake.  You can’t just IGNORE us Blake.  (That was a movie line for other old farts.)  Put out stuff we like.  That would be good stuff.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ACMLXLYSSX73RNYQOUZWSO2I4U Enough already!

    If what I have read and seen on line Blake might think about cutting back on the sauce!   lols   I am a Ray Price fan and many of the other old “farts” he was talking about.   Personally, I prefer Patsy Cline to most of todays girl country singers.   Go figure

  • chillj

    I must be very strange.  I never liked the Beatles, especially the dumb first album.  Liked Elvis okay, but thought him a bit of an old fart (and his movies were horrendous).

  • http://twitter.com/eilonwya10 Eilonwy

    Or, they like the old music, so when they do buy, they are going to buy the old original music that they remember and love. They aren’t going to support new artists, who are performing new music in the older style, because they’ll view those artists as just being imitators. 

    How do they even find out about new artists in the old style, if radio doesn’t play those artists?

    Let’s say you’re a fan of Blake Shelton. If radio stops playing Shelton’s music and his Voice gig ends, how do you know about new releases? Either you have to be an active, involved fan who makes a point of following him (which a majority of album sales never were, for anybody) or you have to make country-music-in-general such an important part of your lifestyle that you’re in the loop for moderately obscure news.

    Then figure radio goes through a cycle of playing music you can’t stand — which no matter how open-minded a person is, tends to happen now and again. You stop listening to radio. How do you find out about new artists in your preferred style? At this point, you have to be generally in the loop for country music, which means you’re making an effort to go looking for the newest releases. That’s the behavior of the minority who are passionate about music as a hobby, not the majority of music consumers who are looking for casual entertainment.

  • http://twitter.com/LexieONeill Lexie O’Neill

    So your favorite artist can make a living and keep on making music.  I do think it’s crucial that fans buy albums, etc. as a way of being heard…

  • elliegrll

    Who knows what comes first, but for the people who run radio their belief is that the consumers who they are trying to reach are going to stop listening to Blake/older artists, before they decide to stop playing him and them.  In some ways, there is evidence to support their stance.  Look at all of the older acts such as Bon Jovi, who are selling out arenas in huge numbers, but can hardly get people to buy their new music.  The honest fans will admit that while they will tolerate the new stuff, they are at the concert to hear the older songs.

  • MellyPer1692

    Does George Strait have a new album out? Isn’t the song he’s selling a lead off single for an album that hasn’t been released yet?? Taylor Swifts song is what, her second or third single off of RED which has sold a ton and continues to do so. The situation doesn’t seem comparable IMO.

    I like Blake and I love Miranda, she’s my favorite female country singer.

  • calliebeckett

    Don’t most artist make their money on the road touring? I’ve heard the argument for artists to give out their stuff for free because of this. Word of mouth and touring will get them recognition.

    As far as buying music, I’m making the argument for people who don’t even get music illegally but casual music listeners. The people who buy the stuff that charts on itunes.

  • Myrrna

    I’m afraid country pop-crap has won. This fight has been going on at least 50 years. Merle Haggard and Buck Owens created the “Bakersfield Sound” in the 60′s to return country music to its roots because they thought Nashville was selling out. Tons of Texas music from then until now was in reaction to Nashville. A lot of Americana or alt-country currently is an attempt to remain true to country roots.

    The problem now is country radio is all owned by 2 companies and plays all the same crap and it is pop.

  • http://twitter.com/KatiesUVULA Katie’s Uvula

    WELL Hate to say I told you so. There goes his PR people telling him to retract his comments

  • standtotheright

     

    Look at all of the older acts such as Bon Jovi, who are selling out
    arenas in huge numbers, but can hardly get people to buy their new music

    The Circle was certified gold in the US and several other countries, selling around 3 million worldwide. Sure, those aren’t Taylor Swift numbers, but that is not remotely the same as “can’t get people to buy their new music.” Plenty of new young bands who do arena tours barely sell gold nowadays.

    In general, younger audiences tend to be more involved with active music discovery and purchases, and much older audiences tend to be more content with radio rather than streaming or purchases, but that doesn’t preclude sales from heritage acts or to older fans. It’s that kind of absolutism that bit Shelton in the ass.

  • http://twitter.com/tippingcow Em

    It’s amazing how in one moment of stupidity, he managed to piss off country legends, older fans, younger fans, traditional-country fans and even modern-country fans.

    Talk about having wide appeal, lol. Truly living up to his Entertainer of the Year label.

  • MissMyEm

    Yes I am aware of that.  I’m sure my folks thought Sinatra and Como were the bomb. I’m sure I know someone who loved Elvis.  However, I still say my generation made the best music, but then again, I’m one of those old farts Blake talks about.   What can I say?  That’s not to say and didn’t mean to imply that there is not good music out today. I have many favorites.  If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be posting here. I just think the best music came out of the 60s, 70s and 80s.  JMHO.

  • SaSa8

    Blake’s comments were rude and insulting to all the greats that came before him.  And  whether he truly admires them or not, this statement shows what he really thinks.  And he now very carefully crafted an apology for how he said it.  He has been away from country music and The Opry and has seem to have forgotten that he should be grateful for traditional country music of the past.  IMO his fame has gone to his head and the awards he has won has made him a little too big headed. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PSHFTD4YV3QOE3INABJUXZSWMU hillstreetblooz

     Yeah, feels like I strolled into the neighborhood “Assholes R Us” with Lance Armstrong and now Blake Shelton trying to do cleanup on Aisle 1. Sounds like dude had him a little nip before he took to twitter.

  • http://twitter.com/KariannHart Kariann Hart

    Indeed, us “old farts” do buy for our children and Grandchildren.  I have bought several items, including CDs of Justin Bieber!

  • Cara Boenig

     Most artists won’t get a tour much more than the three guys touring out of a van and playing in clubs type of tour if they don’t sell their music.  Your not going to make a huge amount of money from that type of touring.  Some artists do build up their reputation from touring and then begin to sell well, but I don’t think that’s as common as one would hope.

  • http://twitter.com/eilonwya10 Eilonwy

    Don’t most artist make their money on the road touring? I’ve heard the argument for artists to give out their stuff for free because of this.

    It’s a system that works for a handful of artists who were established in the old way, through radio play. Prince did this, a few years back — gave away the music and made the money on tour.

    These “heritage” artists are acts that don’t get radio play any more, but that were HUGE once upon a time. Aside from the residual fan base that still actively follows them, these acts have a gigantic “nostalgia” fan base with fond memories of the band’s blockbuster album back in the day. These nostalgic fans show up for tours, which often get livelier PR than the same act’s new albums do. 

    Today’s huge acts make serious money on tour, but they’re likely also getting big advances from their labels, who’d like to make money, too. Labels make money from selling music, not from touring. (The move to 360-degree contracts never really took off.)

    A moderately successful act (large clubs, small theaters) likely makes money on tour through VIP packages, more than through ticket prices. 

    At the “band in a van” level (openers for mid-size venues, headlines small clubs), touring is lucky to break even. You tour to sell music and merch, and to expand your fan base so that you can sell more stuff next time.

    For acts from small up to “moderately successful,” the real money is in private gigs, but the “music wants to be free” crowd doesn’t like that reality. 

  • Happyhexer

    Unfortunately, I am afraid you have hit the nail on the head!

    I’m not “old,” but I’m not young either.  I still buy albums.  But most of the younger people I know think it’s stupid to spend money on music, when you can do the foregoing.  And with mobile computing (SmartPhones and Tablets, etc.), the fact that you can Google almost any song you want to hear at any time provides a lot less incentive for purchasing music, particularly since the preferred purchasing method (downloading) doesn’t give you extras like album art, lyrics, or other things that gave some insight into an artist’s personality.

  • Happyhexer

    Yup, and that is one of the things that makes me sad about the shift to Internet downloading and away from bricks-and-mortar stores.  The only way I find country music I like that hasn’t been played to death on the radio to the point where I have come to hate it is by taking some of those country music surveys, like the Nashville Country Club’s New Music poll.  So that would be me, making an attempt to be “in the loop for country music” and “making an effort to go looking for the newest releases.”  But if I don’t write down the names of songs or artists that I like, I can’t buy the music.  Not like I can stroll through a music store anymore . . .

    Case in point.  I took a NCC survey a while back and really liked this group, but couldn’t remember their name until I stumbled over it recently.  So I just bought the EP that Due West released in 2011.

  • blackberryharvest

    Yeah, it probably was harsh, I was just shocked at what he said so I typed out angry thoughts lol.

  • http://twitter.com/facenfield David Facenfield

    interesting comments and observations… most seem valid, to some degree… i think this is just as relevant a situation in other genres, like rock and pop… especially were youthfulness is a big part of what makes the genre what it is…

    as a successful act becomes ‘older’ there are deemed less relevant by the industry and played less on radio/music tv… i guess the rationale is that the kids don’t want to listen to them, they want to listen to acts they feel represent them… so Blake’s comments have some validity…

    record companies also recognise this phenom and will invest in more new acts, focussing less on older established acts in terms of promotion on radio…

    at the same time the audience who grew up listening to said older successful act… still enjoy the music of their youth, so will listen to those 5, 10, 20 year old albums and go see those acts live, its a fun night out, recaptures their youth etc… so record companies recognise this and focus any resources they have for older acts into money making concerts…

    they don’t buy the newer stuff for a combination of reasons… a big part of it is that their time, money, focus is now on other things like family, career etc… they probably no longer buy much ‘new music’ in general (see reasons above) plus they don’t feel relate to it, or feel it is made for them…

    they also don’t hear the new music by older established act, so don’t know it as well as the older stuff… they may feel the newer stuff by their fave act is not as  good, probably because they are not in the same mind-set they were when they were younger and saw music as a soundtrack to their lives etc…

    there are exceptions, but they tend to prove the rule… sadly it’s nothing new… possibly a bit chicken and egg… would the sales continue if they got the airplay etc… 

  • http://twitter.com/LexieONeill Lexie O’Neill

    The funny thing is, I’d posted a comparison of the sales of traditional, current artists on IDF a few days earlier before I’d heard of Blake’s comments (even though this first came out in November now that I’ve read more)…

    Josh Turner, Easton Corbin, George Strait, Alan Jackson, etc. their albums have sold less than Taylor Swift, Jason Aldean, Eric Church, and Luke Bryan.  And that’s where the problem lies–how I wish whatever forces necessary would lead to people buying more of these newer, traditional sounding artists. 

    At the same time, they do sell some–and I would never agree that Blake deserves a vocalist award over Josh, just sayin’.

  • http://twitter.com/kt194 lauers

    It is kind of a strange discussion, because the charts show that Blake is right.
    Part of the discussion comes because people call things country, that I myself do not call country, at least not as it used to be.

    To me real country is Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, Glen Campbell, Brad Paisley.

    Taylor Swift,Lady Antebellum are not what I would call country. They are pop. Jason Aldean, which I like, is labeled country, but in my ears, he is what used to be called southern rock (I’m an old guy)
    Eric Church is in my ears rock.

  • SaSa8

    I don’t really think Blake grasps that what he said (or should I say how he said it) offended a lot of folks, fans and musicians.  He is receiving support from some though.  Here is a tweet from Martina McBride showing her support of Blake but what I thought was very telling was Blake’s response that he thinks the whole thing was “dumb”.  He sure has a way with words LOL.   

    @martinamcbride: “Just catching up on this. We all know where your heart is Blake. Love you.” He responded: “Thanks sis… It’s so dumb. I love you!!”

  • elliegrll

    Music evolves, it always has.  Music has to grow and evolve with the culture, because as time passes people will perceive things differently. That’s why I don’t think that labeling something as real or not works.  

  • calliebeckett

    I’ve read the story of HMV? I think closing it’s doors in the UK. A store known for cd’s. Some in the UK are sad about it, some say “get with the times”.

    To be honest, I like cherry picking singles. It’s very rare for me to like every single song on an album. So for me, why bother?

  • Indigobunting

    Lol, Blake will be Blake.  I think he is more of an ‘entertainer’ and less of an artist.  He is funny, provoking, likes to stir it up in all kinds of ways.

    But musically-I’m not a fan.  He is vanilla to me-kind of like a current Barry Manilow.

    He was certainly disrespectful, but a little ironic he dissed the insider Nashville powerful that determines what gets attention in Country Music-his old jackass self, lol.

    I don’t necessarily disagree with his basic point; I do respect the country traditionalists….but lets get real; Country music is only more popular these days because at least 2/3 of it is rock/pop that can’t be found on the electro poppy/rap etc stations- the music that the largest and wealthiest generation will buy-Baby Boomers.

    I enjoy Patsy Cline, a little Loretta and certainly a little Cash and Willie; but the only reason I listen to country radio is because it is basically Rock with a sometimes twang I initially hated but have come to tolerate or even enjoy.

  • Reflects On Life

    While all music formats evolve & morph with the times, I seem to recall that country music has always had a front-and-center identity argument amongst its ranks.  Today’s traditionalists complain that current country music doesn’t sound like ’80s country, but in the ’80s they were complaining that it didn’t sound like ’50s country, and in the ’50s that it wasn’t like the ’20s.  Heck, country used to be called country-western music, being a union of 2 genres once upon a time.

    Maybe it’s a reflection of the changing demographics of its audience.  Family farms & ranches are on the wane, people don’t live in shanty towns and straw huts in the US anymore, we’re not still trying to conquer the West, industrial jobs came and went, and suburbs have largely substituted the function of small towns. 

    So the lyrical and musical content would shift accordingly.  I’m reminded of Reba’s ’80s hit “Fancy” – lyrically it would sit better in urban or hiphop than in country nowadays.

  • jackeyb

    Ha! Guess I’m a young fart. I’m young and currently listen to old fart country versus the god awful country crap that is out there now. The last albums I downloaded were Hank Williams Sr and Hank III. Will I ever buy a Blake Shelton album, no. He won’t even relevant 10 years from now. His pop status will put him in the same league as Billy Ray Cyrus. He’s a pop star and best if he accepts it and saves his money.

  • http://twitter.com/andrejkur andre j kur

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/02/arts/music/02cara.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
    Regenerating its audience is something that’s been heavily on the mind of Nashville of late. In March the Country Music Association released the results of a 2008 marketplace study it commissioned, the largest in its history. The findings identified one of the largest focuses of growth potential as “pop country” listeners, whom it described as “very urban, responding to new, female, pop-leaning country artists.”

  • http://twitter.com/andrejkur andre j kur

    Jay Frank, the senior vice president for music strategy at Country Music Television:
    “Hearing Ms. Swift and Ms. Underwood on pop radio stations means that for a new generation of listener, country is no longer taboo. Eighteen- to 29-year-olds, you used to ask them what they listen to, and they’d say ‘All kinds of music except country’. Now that’s changed. If we nail it right as a community, we’ve got an audience that we’ll take with us for the next 20 years.”