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Honky-Tonk Land

Mike Sudhalter  |  July 4, 2007

I picked up my mail this afternoon and got the Country Weekly magazine with coverage of last month's CMA Music Festival. The coverage consisted mostly of Fan Club party descriptions and lots of great pictures, but there was an excellent, unrelated story in the magazine - George Strait getting his medallion at the Country Music Hall of Fame.

How about this CW quote on why Strait was glad he got inducted during his lifetime - "No one knows if you know you got it, when you get it after you're gone."

And it gets funnier. According to CW, George Jones said of Strait's 35 years of marriage to his wife, Norma - "Hot damn, 35 years to the same woman - that's good." Not sure if the Possum was expressing amazement, admiration or both with that comment.

Moving on, Let me know what you think about artists selling their music exclusively. Josh Turner released a live album that's exclusively sold at Cracker Barrel locations.

Since I don't feel like driving to the closest CB location - 427.8 miles away in St. George, Utah - it's good to know that you can order the album on their website.

He's not the first artist to release an album exclusively through CB. Then, there's Garth Brooks, who sells his music exclusively through Wal-Mart.

Is this a continuing trend and is it good for fans? Ten years from now, will we be forced to buy Clay Walker albums at the Waffle House, Mark Chesnutt at Texas Roadhouse and Faith Hill at Bath & Body Works?

I think it might be a good idea for a veteran performer, but someone like Turner needs to get his music out through any and all outlets. Turner is a great traditionalist and someone that's much needed on the country music scene. But he's definitely at the make-or-break phase right now.

He established himself with "Long Black Train", but the debut album didn't do spectacularly. The second album was much better with a pair of No. 1 hits. But the question remains, will he be on the scene in five years or will his name by preceded by, "Whatever happened to...?"

It's been almost a month since the CMA Festival took place, but for those of you that miss it, here's a video by Caroline of Great Britain that shows one festival-goers' experience on June 5-7 in Nashville, from the honky-tonks to the nightly shows. I'm posting one of the videos, but you can access all of them by typing "Travelling Caz" in a YouTube search. Hopefully, it will give you a better appreciation for the festival, if you missed it.

Enjoy, Honky-Tonk Land!

:: Posted at 1:21 AM by Mike Sudhalter ::
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