The song “Try That in a Small Town” by country musician Jason Aldean has been widely criticized for its alleged “racist” and “pro-lynching” lyrics.
When his song was taken off the radio, the artist decided to address the allegations against him.
Read on for more information.
CMT decided to remove the music video for Jason Aldean’s “Try That in a Small Town” after hearing complaints that the song promoted racism and “pro-lynching.”
The singer is currently responding to the many charges made against him.
“In the past 24 hours I have been accused of releasing a pro-lynching song (a song that has been out since May) and was subject to the comparison that I (direct quote) was not too pleased with the nationwide BLM protests,” the country singer said on social media.
“These references are not only meritless, but dangerous,” he further added.
Reports indicate that CMT aired the song video for three days before deciding to withdraw it.
While they have decided to stop airing the show, they are remaining tight-lipped on the explanation.
Video footage of Aldean’s performance of the song in question was shot in front of the Maury County Courthouse in Columbia, Tennessee, with an American flag hung over the entrance.
After the footage was posted last week, astute viewers noted that the scene was the same as the 1920 lynching of an African-American man called Henry Choate, then 18 years old.
It is unknown where the tape presented here originates from, but it clearly depicts protesters burning American flags and engaging in violent confrontations with police.
“Cuss out a cop, spit in his face / Stomp on the flag and light it up / Yeah, ya think you’re tough / Well, try that in a small town / See how far ya make it down the road,” Aldean says in the song’s lyrics.
“Around here, we take care of our own / You cross that line, it won’t take long / For you to find out, I recommend you don’t,” the lyrics say.
Variety labeled it “the most contemptible country song of the decade,” and the musician was called “a racist who writes barely concealed lynching songs” and a “violent bigot” on social media.
Kelley Lovelace, Kurt Allison, Neil Thrasher, and Tully Kennedy all contributed to the song’s composition.
The artist strongly disputes that he wanted to “point to” race, despite the fact that the setting of the music video has historical significance in relation to the lynching of African Americans in the United States.
“There is not a single lyric in the song that references race or points to it- and there isn’t a single video clip that isn’t real news footage -and while I can try and respect others to have their own interpretation of a song with music- this one goes too far,” he said.
The artist claimed that “Try That in a Small Town” was only about the “feeling of a community” he experienced in his hometown. “We took care of our neighbors, regardless of differences in background or belief,” he stated.
“My political views have never been something I’ve hidden from, and I know that a lot of us in this country don’t agree on how we get back to a sense of normalcy where we go at least a day without a headline that keeps us up at night,” Aldean clarified.
“But the desire for it to — that’s what this song is about,” he added.
The singer has been criticized before, so this is not the first time.
After his wife’s transphobic remarks in 2021, the singer’s publicists fired her.
Brittany caused a stir when she praised her parents in an Instagram video for “not changing [her] gender” during her “tomboy phase” when she was younger.
“Lmao!! I’m glad they didn’t too, cause you and I wouldn’t have worked out,” Jason commented on his wife’s video.
He later backed her after she was criticized for calling parents who let their children transition “one of the worst evils.”
All of this criticism has surfaced since the commencement of Jason Aldean’s Highway Desperado tour on July 14.
The musician was hospitalized on day two of his tour with heatstroke and had to postpone his performance.
The concert venue sent out a statement which read, “Yesterday’s Jason Aldean show will be rescheduled for a future date. We appreciate your patience as we work on rescheduling a new date, as well as the outpouring of well wishes for Jason.”
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