Sunday, December 25, 2011

The Inky Jukebox’s Redneckest Top Ten of 2011

Of Course "Redneckest" Is A Real Word, Jeez

Instead of trawling through the iTunes mega-vault to find the year’s best song, which is boring as all-get-out, and pointless besides (what does “best” mean?), The Inky Jukebox decided to go with a differently themed end of year wrap-up.

We therefore present The Inky Jukebox Redneckest List of 2011. To qualify, a song had to be released in 2011 or on an album whose major sales came in 2011. It also had to feature as its main theme those ideals / images that best represent the redneck way of life. It was hard to narrow this list down to just ten, which is such a random number, but we did and here it is. All of these clips also showcase what tremendously gifted musicians all of these people are. Enjoy, ya'll.

Justin Moore: Guns

You know y’all bought this album to get this song and you play it in your truck as loud as it will go. You know y’all get crazy with your demonstrative hand gestures when Moore hits his money-note about needing his Colt 44 to waste home invaders towards the end. It’s a love song to the Second Amendment, and has mass appeal, whether you’re more into Remingtons or Glocks. (Do we let terrorists watch cable TV, by the way?)

Pistol Annies: Trailer For Rent

The entire Pistol Annies album could qualify as an entry here because it doesn’t just speak from the redneck girl experience, it rolls around in it like a bride in mud. This song is about a trailer whose walls have punch holes in them being sold by a woman who’s just tired of her man’s shit. It’s sung in such a beautiful way, it could be mistaken for a song not about any of these things.

Brantley Gilbert: Take It Outside

Brantley Gilbert hit it huge in 2011, not only with the songs he wrote for Jason Aldean, but with the reissue of his superb album, Halfway To Heaven. It was hard to choose between this song and his hit “Kick It In The Sticks,” which has a whole heapload of hillbilly all up in it, including advice on how not to “get your ass torn up round here.” It involves not hitting on other men’s women. Other advice includes not letting anyone take you snipe hunting, but that’s preaching to the choir. Therefore we have chosen this song, which will never be a single. It’s about bar brawls. The only moment of pause among the testosterone jet-fuelled violence is the reminder to take it outside because “we got girls in here.” Always chivalrous, them boys. Here is a film of him recording it. 

Brad Paisley: Camouflage

This is Brad Paisley’s most redneckest song since “Alcohol,” and is a welcome return to his humorous side. Not that he ever left it behind. But a song with the line “You’re my favorite color, Camouflage,” and lines about — well, all of the lines — especially those rhyming “camouflage” with “corsage” gives it an automatic in on our list.

Eric Church: Jack Daniels

Eric Church is badass, and to prove it he challenges Jack Daniels to a fight. He loses, predictably, singing in his understated way, as if actually feeling the hangover, that “Jack Daniels kicked my ass again last night.” It’s a gentle ditty, as opposed to some of the hollering on his excellent album, Chief, any of the songs of which could also be included on this list. But it presumes jack Daniels is an actual person, and that’s country, y’all.

Miranda Lambert: Dear Diamond

Dear Miranda wrote this one, and it’s a gem (!) of a tune about regret and betrayal when the female protagonist muses on how destroyed her husband will be if he finds out she’s cheated on him with another dude. So she’s not going to tell him. How d’you think that one will play out? Miranda never sounded so forlorn, or so lovely.

Montgomery Gentry: Where I Come From

For a start, Montgomery Gentry’s album is called Rebels on the Run, which plays up the whole Southern outlaw thing, and then they kick the record off with a song about shooting someone dead when they come through your door without knocking first. They’re proud of their right to do this under the curtilage laws which dictate that if you have to shoot a ho on your property, you’d best kill them dead instead of just scare them off a little. You probably already know this is how the guys from Montgomery Gentry feel, but they know their audience, and their audience are redder than that. Which is why we're going with their single, "Where I Come From," which paints a portrait of an America that only exists . . . in the minds of songwriters harping on nostalgia. Also, it's all about offing the enemy.

Josh Thompson: Way Out Here

Speaking of bustin’ caps, Josh Thompson lays it out real simple for those city slickers who might not be familiar with how things are done where the blacktop ends. These folks smoke and chew and fry everything. They sing the words so loud you can't hear the singer. Their “houses are protected by the good Lord and a gun / And you might meet ‘em both if you show up here not welcome son.” You have been warned.

Trace Adkins: Brown Chicken Brown Cow

So this controversial song wasn’t one of Adkins’s best, but it’s on our list because its title refers to the corny music synonymous with 70’s porn. It’s a song about getting it on in the barn. There’s nothing more we can say.

Zac Brown Band: Whiskey’s Gone

But they’re not leaving! A rollicking tune about loving the liquor so much you cannot quit that bitch even if it’s quit you.

Honorable Mentions (Thought we could stop at ten?)

Whiskey Myers: Ballad Of A Southern Man

Because it opens with the lineage of a rifle and keeps saying that’s something you don’t understand. Yes we do. He grew up on a prison farm and knows all the words to "Simple Man." There's also blood on the table. Don't ask.

Craig Campbell: Fish

The only thing we need to say here is that you're meant to substitute the word "fish" for "fuck." he also says "pretty pink bobbers." Haw haw haw. 

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