There have been some pretty awful songs in country music in recent years. Check that there hasn’t just been some bad songs, but horrendous songs that any music fan would be repulsed by and run away in fear of indecency. You don’t have to be a country fan to recognize bad music because it’s pretty obvious to the ears. Every genre has their fair share of awful acts. But in the other genres most of the times these bad acts get laughed out of relevance. In country music these acts are known as some of their biggest stars who can stay in the spotlight for several years. So that means every years there’s a nice batch of awfulness to choose from for this award. But amongst the truly terrible one song usually stands out worse amongst even the worst. This year was no different. One song was horrendous that it was a no-brainer for me to give the award. I present Country Perspective’s 2016 Worst Song of the Year award to Thomas Rhett’s “Vacation.”
Not only is this the worst country song of 2016 in my eyes, but one of the worst songs I’ve ever heard. When listening to Rhett’s album released last year, I knew there was a good chance he would release one of two truly awful songs (the other is “South Side”) as a single in 2016 and if he would it would win the award hands down. Lo and behold I was right. The only good thing I can even say about “Vacation” is thankfully it only peaked at #30 on the Billboard Country Airplay chart. But that’s also an indictment on the song. This single was so horrible that not even country radio wanted to play it and they’ll play almost anything.
So let’s talk about this abomination of a song. You know what this isn’t even a song. This is fucking torture. It makes me long for the dulcet sounds of Rebecca Black, William Hung and Milli Vanilli harmonizing together. I would rather listen to the theme song for Barney on a loop over this song because a purple dinosaur at least has something to say in his song. Here Rhett literally sings about nothing. He just wants to party on vacation! How fucking original is this? The thing is country radio has been flooded with terrible beach music for years, but at least all of the other terrible beach songs had a catchy hook and it didn’t make me want to tear my hair out. The lyrics can’t get any worse. Speaking of songwriting, this song has 16 songwriters. 16 fucking songwriters. I won’t attack the poor bastards from the rock group War, who are innocent bystanders in this train wreck. I wouldn’t want to be credited for being a part of this song in any way, shape or form. In fact I would sue to have my name taken off of it. To the others who helped conceive it, may you step on a thousand Legos. This obviously isn’t country, as anyone with properly working ears and a brain could tell you. I would like to think Johnny Paycheck is haunting Rhett for the rest of his life for unleashing this upon the world. And don’t call it pop because they don’t deserve this crap either. This is horrendous, money-grabbing noise that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. I wish it was instead buried deep into the ocean where no soul would ever hear nor see it again.
It’s really hard to believe it took this long for Rhett to win one of our worst of awards, but I guess he can thank Sam Hunt for not releasing anything new this year to block his path to winning. Florida Georgia Line even put out better music this year along with Cole Swindell (or at least tried). While this is the first time he’s won, I wouldn’t be surprised if it isn’t the last either. Regardless Rhett will forever be Country Perspective’s Worst Song of the Year for 2016.
- Chris Lane – “Fix” – I think I covered this one pretty well in the Worst Album of the Year post. But I’ll add this: this probably would have won if “Vacation” wasn’t released as a single. These two songs had a pretty good gap on the rest of the field.
- Steven Tyler – “Red, White, and You” (The Yum Yum Song) – 2016 was the year Steven Tyler tried to go country and failed miserably. If he was 40 years younger country radio might have actually played it. But thankfully most ears never got to hear a song that reference’s a woman’s vagina as yum yum.
- Chase Rice – “Whisper” – Rice himself essentially admitted this was a bad song!
- Dierks Bentley – “Somewhere on Beach” & “Different for Girls” – No artist disappointed me more this year than Dierks Bentley. He released both of these singles and each repulse me for a different reason. The first is so lazy and clichéd and the second is sexist bullshit. Of course both went on to be #1 songs. Bring back the old Dierks please.
- LoCash – “I Know Somebody” – The amount of auto-tune on this crappy song hurts my music loving soul. As one reader told me, these guys are the definition of a bar band.
- Michael Ray – “Think A Little Less” – This song is essentially a sequel to Sam Hunt’s “Take Your Time.”
- Kelsea Ballerini – “Yeah Boy” – Yeah no. Go to the Disney channel already.
- Dustin Lynch – “Seein’ Red” – I’m not seeing red. I’m seeing more bullshit from one of the most transparently sell out artists in country music.
- Brantley Gilbert – “The Weekend” – This song is like rubbing sandpaper on your ass.