Kix Brooks Says It’s ‘Hard to Argue With’ the Success of Modern Country
Some of country's older generation of stars have been vocal about their dislike of the genre's new direction, but Kix Brooks is not one of them.
Brooks' second career as host of American Country Countdown and the late-night show Kickin' It With Kix gives him a firsthand perspective on the changes that have come to the industry, and while he admits that there's a degree of truth in the criticism of today's radio trends, he says that's just the business.
"Obviously there's a lot of repetitiveness as far as lyrical content and melodic content," Brooks tells Rolling Stone. "But I've been here 30 years now. Even at that time, the same exact conversation was going on that is going on now. People were complaining about [country] being too this or too that, or everything sounds the same. Any time you have something fresh, something new going on, there is always going to be pushback."
The former one-half of Brooks and Dunn insists there's still plenty of substance and diversity at country radio.
"Depending on what you're into, if it's Kasey Musgraves or Zac Brown, or great songs like 'I Drive Your Truck,' those songs are there. Those artists are there. And they are to be embraced. To me, there's something for everybody and, as always, the fans call the shots," he says. "Radio has some control, but it's only going to control it as long as it's working. If the fans are not embracing it, radio is going to whatever is next."
The veteran entertainer is particularly encouraged by the live side of the business, which is bigger than ever.
"We've got Luke [Bryan] and Jason [Aldean] and Zac [Brown Band] selling stadiums! Hell, Ronnie and I never did that," he admits. "Now we have four or five artists legitimately that can sell stadiums damn near anywhere. That is hard to argue with. You go to those shows and you see all these young people having a ball, singing every word. You go, 'Who would want to throw rocks at this? I mean, this is fun.'"
Quit Complaining About Modern Country Music