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Eric Church: Drink in His Hand, Foot in His Mouth

Mike Sudhalter  |  May 1, 2012

Eric Church is a very talented artist, but his comments about reality television music shows were out of line.

Country music doesn't have too many of them, so it's kind of fun when a controversy pops up in the genre.

This one revolved around Eric Church, who bills himself as a new-outlaw type of artist, criticized music reality television shows.

It set off a firestorm of criticism, most prominently from country couple, Blake Shelton, one of the hosts of The Voice, and his wife, Miranda Lambert, who finished third on Nashville Star in 2003.

Church subsequently apologized, saying that he was speaking about the reality shows in general, not individuals.

But that was a typical saving-face response.

I understood what Church was trying to do. He's trying to market himself as country music's bad boy, like this generation's Johnny Cash. He wants us to know that he's edgy and all of these other artists are slick and overproduced. There may be truth to some of it, but it's better left unsaid for many reasons.

His music has, and will, help him attain the goal of being one of the biggest outlaw artist's of this generation, along with Jamey Johnson and Randy Houser.

But do it with the music, Eric, and not the criticism.

Everyone knows the music industry is very tough to break into, so if some people make it via reality show, then more power to them.

There are few things more pressure-filled then performing as an amateur artists before millions of viewers across the world, or a fierce critic like Simon Cowell.

About judging the show, Church said he'd never judge a reality music show, saying "Once your career becomes about something other than the music, then that's what it is. I'll never make that mistake. I don't care if I starve."

I think that Shelton is all about his music, but his presence on the show is helping him reach a whole different demographic of artists. One of my cousins who would never listen to country music watches "The Voice" and actually mentioned Shelton on Twitter. How about that?

How you got to stardom matters little, compared to how you do when you're there. And having enough class to respect your fellow artists is part of that equation.

:: Posted at 7:08 PM by Mike Sudhalter ::
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