The Past Pulse Of Mainstream Country Music [December 1992]

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This is the past pulse of mainstream country music. Each week, I take a look at the Billboard Country Airplay Chart (or, “Hot Country Songs” as it used to be called) from years ago and grade the top 30 songs. Each week will be a different year. The grading format I use each week is every song will receive one of the following scores: +5, +4, +3, +2, +1, 0, -1, -2, -3, -4, -5. These will then be tallied up for an overall score, or pulse of the past top thirty country songs, with the highest possible score being a +150 and the lowest possible score being a -150. The grade I would give it determines its Pulse score. The grading key: 10 [+5], 9 [+4], 8 [+3], 7 [+2], 6 [+1], 5 [0], 4 [-1], 3 [-2], 2 [-3], 1 [-4], 0 [-5].

The goal of this exercise is to evaluate the past state of mainstream country music and determine if it was better or worse compared to now. To see the full list of the top 30 country airplay songs for this week, click here. This week I will take a look at the top 30 songs of the Billboard Hot Country Songs from December 26, 1992. In honor of my ongoing chart request archive, this week’s chart goes out to commenter jmartin103. Thanks for reading jmartin103!

  1. Vince Gill – “Don’t Let Our Love Start Slippin’ Away” +3
  2. Alan Jackson – “She’s Got The Rhythm (And I Got The Blues)” +3
  3. Garth Brooks – “Somewhere Other Than The Night” 0 (Since I don’t have the CD with this song on it, I have no clue what to grade this song. Of course it isn’t anywhere on the Internet and I haven’t heard it before so it’s not going to help or hurt the Pulse)
  4. Hal Ketchum – “Sure Love” +1 [Least Good Song] (It’s just more “meh” than outright bad)
  5. Clint Black – “Burn One Down” +4
  6. George Strait – “I Cross My Heart” +2
  7. Trisha Yearwood – “Walkaway Joe” +4
  8. Brooks & Dunn – “Lost & Found” +3 (One of the few B&D songs featuring Kix on lead vocals. I haven’t checked, does Kix still have more solo songs than Brian Kelley of Florida Georgia Line? Dead serious)
  9. Restless Heart – “When She Cries’” +3 (Probably too pop for 1992 but still a good song)
  10. Tracy Lawrence – “Somebody Paints The Wall” +3 (The George Jones version is obviously highly recommended as well)
  11. Randy Travis – “Look Heart, No Hands” +3
  12. Lee Roy Parnell – “Love Without Mercy” +2
  13. Reba McEntire – “Take It Back” +3 (Probably being a little gracious, but it is certainly fun)
  14. Sammy Kershaw – “Anywhere But Here” +3
  15. John Michael Montgomery Gentry – “Life’s A Dance” +4 [Best Song]
  16. Ricky Van Shelton – “Wild Man” +3
  17. Doug Stone – “Too Busy Being In Love” +1
  18. Tanya Tucker – “Two Sparrows In A Hurricane” +3
  19. Alabama – “I’m In A Hurry (And Don’t Know Why)” +4 (It’s a damn fun song with a good message. We CAN make them!)
  20. Diamond Rio – “In A Week Or Two” +3
  21. Little Texas – “What Were You Thinking” +3
  22. Travis Tritt – “Can I Trust You With My Heart” +2
  23. Chris LeDoux – “Cadillac Ranch” +3 (There’s a lot of big names that came from the 90’s, but ironically enough Chris was one of the first artists from before 2000 I ever listened to)
  24. John Anderson – “Let Go Of The Stone” +3 (The one, two, three punch of Tritt, LeDoux, and Anderson is just awesome)
  25. Wynonna – “My Strongest Weakness” +2
  26. Confederate Railroad – “Queen Of Memphis” +2
  27. Mark Collie – “Even The Man In The Moon Is Cryin’” +3
  28. Billy Dean – “If There Hadn’t Been You” +3 (Borderline +3. The production is a little too sleepy for my tastes)
  29. Suzy Bogguss – “Drive South” +3
  30. Wynonna – “No One Else On Earth” +4 (A.K.A, the better Wynonna song here)

The Past Pulse of Mainstream Country Music: +77

It’s getting a little cliché at this point, but there’s really not much else to say other than this is another great chart! A little bit of a step up from last week even if there still wasn’t a song here that outright blew me away. Even still, when you have artists like Vince Gill, Alan Jackson, Clint Black, George Strait, Trisha Yearwood, Randy Travis, Reba, Sammy Kershaw, John Anderson, Chris LeDoux, Wynonna and SO many more cranking out at least great songs, there’s not much to complain about.

As an additional note, I have to say that the 90’s charts are always my favorite ones to listen to and rank. Sure, it’s not perfect, but nothing really is. These charts are always highly enjoyable and bring tons of great songs that are a better representation of country music than a lot of the stuff we have today.

The Hodgepodge: Your Favorite Artist Doesn’t Owe You Anything

The best and probably the worst thing about the internet and social media is the constant contact and potential interaction fans can have with their favorite artist. Many artists will do Q&As on social media or respond to other kinds of tweets at any time. The ability to connect with your favorite artists is awesome, and one of my favorite things about using Twitter. When abused though, that same ability can become the worst thing.

Personally, one of my pet peeves about Twitter are those who randomly ask their favorite singer, movie star, or athlete for a retweet. What does that accomplish when you beg someone to retweet your message begging them for a retweet? But that’s just the beginning, as you’ll see fans beg for meet & greets at concerts, autographs, or even concert tickets through tweets and Facebook posts.

Farce the Music noted this frequently popping up on Kane Brown’s Facebook page. This is also something I’ve noticed on Facebook with a couple of artists I follow. The biggest offenders I see on my Facebook (because I don’t follow a lot of mainstream acts) are Cross Canadian Ragweed fans on Cody Canada’s page who haven’t moved on from the fact that Ragweed is a band of the past. There are those who complain about a certain Ragweed song not being played at a Departed concert or pester Canada constantly about a band reunion. I can only imagine how obnoxious that must be to the singer.

But looking at mainstream pages of Kane Brown, Cole Swindell, or Luke Bryan, you see fans desperately beg those artists for any little recognition or perk simply because they’re fans with a sob story. This happens to the point where some people actually choose to publicly share their phone numbers with the hopes that the artist will call them back.

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Screen Shot from a post on Cole Swindell’s official Facebook page

 

 

 

Other fans beg for perks from the artist simply because they’ve recently lost a relative or friend.

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Screen Shot from a post on Luke Bryan’s official Facebook Page

 

 

 

 

 

These sorts of actions further add to the notion of how entitled music fans feel about their access to music and/or artists. Josh wrote last year about fans who believed they should be paid to listen to an artists’ album. Singers don’t owe anything extra to the fans than simply providing music for you to enjoy. If your favorite singer doesn’t want to do a free meet and greet, or sign autographs, they don’t have to. All that’s really expected is that the singer puts out an album you like and performs a concert you enjoy. Outside of that, there’s nothing you as a fan are entitled to.

Now, phrased in the right way, I think there are respectable ways of asking for that sort of information. “Will there be an opportunity for meet and greet after the show?” To me, that seems like a good way to learn that information without seeming pushy or greedy. But those who say “you should do ‘x’ or ‘y’ because I’ve experience ‘z'” are the entitled fans who try too hard. Singers are people too, and they’re allowed to run their tour in any way they choose.

Don’t be the entitled fan begging on social media. Respect your favorite artists and don’t expect anything that’s not promised by the concert ticket you purchase.

Upcoming/Recent Country & Americana Releases

  • Miranda Lambert will reveal a new single, “Vice,” off her upcoming album.
  • David Nail’s Fighter will be released tomorrow.
  • Also released tomorrow is Big Shoals’ Hard Lessons and Confederate Railroad’s Lucky to be Alive.
  • At the end of the month, Lori McKenna will release The Bird & the Rifle.
  • Hillary Scott will release Love Remains on July 29.

Throwback Thursday Song

“Bubba Shot the Jukebox” by Mark Chesnutt. When I was about 8 years old, a country cover artist at the local county fair brought me and my cousins up on stage to help him sing this song. All I really did was fold my hand like a pistol whenever he sang, “Bubba shot the jukebox,” but it’s a fun memory, and this song is special to me for that reason. So in honor of Mark Chesnutt’s release of his new album, this 1992 single is my throwback song.

Non-Country Song of the Week

“S.I.D.” by Rainsford Rainey Qualley, who released a pop-country EP featuring “Me and Johnny Cash” has released a full-fledged pop single under her name Rainsford. Not a bad pop single, and I appreciate the fact that she’s released the song under a different name from her country persona.

Tweet of the Week

As Pokemon Go continues to take over the world, I like the idea of song parodies!

A Mark Chesnutt iTunes Review

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I’d say some kids today understand good country music like Chesnutt, but I pretty much agree with this review. You’ll soon see our review for Tradition Lives.