Year In Review: 12 Songs That Made 2011 A Special Year For Country Music

[lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Brantley Gilbert[/lastfm] – “Country Must Be Country Wide” (Valory)

There was a time when Country Music was the “red-headed stepchild” of Pop Culture.

Occasionally, a great Country song would cross over to the Pop/Rock Top 40…but for the most part, Nashville operated in its own vacuum, like a child with “cooties” ignored by their classmates, while Pop/Rock’s popularity went unchallenged.

Those days are long gone.

Today, Country and Pop/Rock run on parallel tracks of popularity in a back-and-forth duel…and by most measurable standards – concert attendance, radio and TV ratings, CD sales and digital downloads, – Country often leads.

That Lady Antebellum swept the GRAMMYs in a year in which Eminem (link NSFW) released his most critically acclaimed album ever…is a telling sign of the respect Country Music has earned in Pop Culture.

Many diverse factors have led to this day – enough to fill a college-level study course.

But Brantley Gilbert boiled it all down to a 3:30 anthem.

Country IS country-wide.


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