1980’s-2000’s Country Music
Country music has recently become more radical. In the past country tunes were sluggish and slow, but a group of up and coming artists would revolutionize the music industry forever. These new artist did more for the southern/western genre than anyone in the past. They sold millions of record. Cumulatively they made billions of dollars! Artists had gigantic concerts that attracted hundreds of thousands of spectators. Their songs began to do something no country artist had done before… top the pop charts. The 1980’s brought forth some of the most dominant and influential country singers of all time, while seasoned veterans, who were previously successful in other decades, continued to create great music. In the 1990’s the money began to flow. Artists composed albums that went Diamond (sell over 10,000,000 units) and sold out stadiums. The “good time” singers of the 2000’s sang songs about love, drunkenness, and the party life. These topics appealed to regular folks and attracted new followers. Overall, this period of country music brought light to the genre and delivered great wealth to its artists.
The country artists of the 1980’s are the most famous in the history of country music. The 80’s was a period when the older singers from recent decades, such as George Jones, Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers, etc., still continued to churn out hits. Their style was popular but new faces were coming to the scene. George Strait, “The King of Country”, came to Nashville and stubbornly wore his western attire (cowboy hat, Wranglers, etc.) which by the 80’s was being done away, but with the help of Mr. Strait was being brought back into style! He sang western cowboy music and barroom swing music which became popular very quickly. Another 80’s star was traditionalist Randy Travis. His debut album, Storms of Life, was the first album by a country artist to sell one million albums in its first year of release. He, like George, helped in returning country music to its roots by being clean cut and having a western swag. Finally, the “hillbilly,” Dwight Yoakam, who sang a mix of traditional country and rock-n-roll, became one of country music’s first full-fledged entertainers. He wore tight clothes and pranced around the stage. He innovated country music, just as his successors in the 90’s would.
The 1990’s was a great decade for country music. It was a boom! The artists made much more money than the country music industry had ever seen. The most famous artist of the era, and arguably any era, was Garth Brooks was the leader of the boom in the 90’s. Brooks had six albums to reach Diamond status. He not only sang, but entertained the crowds he drew. His most fond compliment was from a lady who told him, “You’re like one of us who made it,” and that he was. He was a down to earth family man who regarded them as his top priority. However, when he stepped on the stage he was the crazy and wild entertainer who ruled the...