The Ten Biggest Douchebags In Country Music

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Courtesy of the label
Mainstream country music gets an unfair rap as being universally over-polished and formulaic, a notion that artists like Kacey Musgraves and Eric Church obliterate every time they strap on their guitars. But there's a granule of truth to the stereotype, and a particularly damaging subgenre -- known as "bro-country" -- is lending it far too much credibility right now.

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Booze, chicks, jacked-up pickups, extreme redneck sports, spring break -- artists like Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line and even Blake Shelton are leaning way too heavily on such themes in their music these days, and the entire trope can be summed up in one word: douchey. Yet bro-country isn't the only brand of 'baggery currently afflicting Nashville. No, douchebags are a diverse lot, and here are the ten biggest 'bags currently cranking out (s)hits in Music City today:

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Courtesy of the label
Toby Keith
10. Toby Keith
Drinking has long been fertile fodder for country songs. But for Keith, who has devoted entire concept albums to the topic, it's too often the only fodder. His lyrical over-reliance on the bottle is at least partially responsible for spawning bro-country, and Keith also bears a heavy burden for souring the Dixie Chicks on country radio (and vice versa), a setback from which Nashville's female insurgency is only now recovering.

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Courtesy of the label
Charles Kelley

9. Charles Kelley
He seems like a sweet, goofy guy, but sounds like supremo-'bag Michael Bolton, and is in a trio with "Lady" in its name. There's no place for the sort of soft-rock sheen Kelley brings to twang's table; it's high time Hillary Scott ditched the dudes and made Lady Antebellum all about the Lady.

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Ram Country
Dan + Shay

8. Dan + Shay
This douchey duo is managed by Belieber in Chief Scooter Braun. That's the only argument we need.

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Courtesy of the label
Chris Gaines/Garth Brooks

7. Garth Brooks
Brooks admirably took a decade off in his prime to focus on his family, but we still can't get the Chris Gaines debacle out of our head, nor can we entirely dismiss it as the reason for Brooks' "retirement" in the first place.

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135 comments
Drew Somervell
Drew Somervell

There is great country music out there but you won't hear it on the radio. The masses have already proven to Nashville that they will shell out money for anything they are fed. As long as it follows the formula, it doesn't have to be good.

rettamichaels
rettamichaels

I agree with everything except for Kenny Chesney... A guy who has an ass that hot needs to be done! Yeah, I'd do him until a spork went in! Pass the grits!

Sanz Wilson
Sanz Wilson

Lmao!! I whole heartedly agree! I cannot stand any artist on this list. In fact I don't like country at all.

Drew Somervell
Drew Somervell

I always shame people for listening to "young country".

Christina Toth
Christina Toth

Exactly but I know plenty of people who like country music so I try to be mindful when they want to listen to it, I just take it with a grain of salt :)

Christina Toth
Christina Toth

Country music all sounds the SAME. The ten mentioned could all be singing at different times but it all sounds exactly alike. I used to live country back in the late 80's/early 90's and older country before it because it was original! Now, it's the same crap over and over. Just because they're making money at it doesn't make it good, it just means people follow the pack until they get shunned on the internet and move on. There's so much better music out there.

Jake Moore
Jake Moore

Also Luke Bryan blows god bless amen

Jake Moore
Jake Moore

I'm more appalled by the mention of a fedora as a fashion statement.

Robert Michael
Robert Michael

Luke bryan definitely #1 on my list. dude can't even make "good" music

Drew Somervell
Drew Somervell

Truth isn't always comfortable. Nobody wants to hear that the terrible music they listen to is, well, terrible. It's natural to defend personal choices, regardless of how bad they are. Heroin addiction and conservative talk radio are excellent examples of this type of behavior. If people only accept the music that is presented to them by commercial radio, these are the types of acts they are going to gravitate to. Following the crowd and only listening to what they are told to listen to are easy so people don't have to put forth any effort to find real quality. It's ok I guess. Some people enjoy mediocrity. I've never been one of those people.

Josh Jordan
Josh Jordan

I'm sorry, but these are the LAMEST reasons I've ever heard for considering these musicians douchebags. I was expecting misogyny, racism, treating fans like crap, etc.

Mike E. Moses
Mike E. Moses

Country or not I still think the people who bash other peoples opinions on music are just as big of douchebag than the artists you are bashing.. Just because you listen to slayer or fuckin Keisha who gives a shit.. This is why they need to get rid of the comment section on articles

Jason Gerfers
Jason Gerfers

I appreciate all genres, Alexandra, too. But I cant just get behind this disingenuous money grabbing "Bro Country" movement. I am sorry if my opinions offended anybody.

Amanda Hendrickson
Amanda Hendrickson

I totally agree. Music should speak to you, but it also should have something worth saying. It should also be authentic and not shat out by the music industry. That's like saying I'm a fan of food and promoting McDonald's.

Alexandra Lugger
Alexandra Lugger

Oh geez lol! Please don't recommend anything to me. I might be receptive to your suggestions if you all didn't act like such music snobs, but just because someone listens to something you don't care for doesn't mean I need your help. Yes, I enjoy a little modern country every now and again. I also play the crap out of Zenyatta Mondatta as well as the Cure, Annie Lenox, Loretta Lynn, Fleetwood Mac, Less Than Jake, Joni Mitchell, Arlo Guthrie, Michael Gungor, The Pointer Sisters, Lordi, Gwar, Alice Cooper, Cream, Dean Martin, Rosemary Clooney, Cradle Of Filth, and HIM just to name very few. I am a music fan! I like ALL music because it ALL speaks to me in one way or another. You looking down your nose at others because they like something you don't is pretentious, and frankly, not what art and expression is all about. So thank you, but I do not need your help or for you to guide me.

Drew Somervell
Drew Somervell

It's funny to watch people get defensive over terrible music. We music lovers are not trying to insult you. We're simply trying to turn you on to the good stuff. Turn off the bro-country and follow me.

Drew Somervell
Drew Somervell

Wealth and popularity do not go hand and hand with quality.

Chrissy Stough
Chrissy Stough

I guess that's your opinion isn't it? Just like my comment was mine.

Jason Gerfers
Jason Gerfers

You don't think these country douchebags are posers, Chrissy?

Tammy Pruitt Hudanick
Tammy Pruitt Hudanick

I like everyone one this list!! They are very successful so they must be doing something right!!!!!!!!

Amanda Hendrickson
Amanda Hendrickson

Spot on! And no, Alexandra, this is not coming from a hipster as you implied. The author is absolutely correct. This kind of garbage people call 'music' is AWFUL! If you want to hear someone that actually knows how to write a song instead of pandering to 13-22 year olds, I invite you to check out the following: Hayes Carl, Elizabeth Cook, Sarah Jorosz, Bruce Robison, and Kelly Willis just to name a few. These are are actual artists that should be on the radio instead of the swill there now #taylorswiftisgodawful #makeitstop

Drew Fennewald
Drew Fennewald

Jake Nichols Kinley Johnson Randi Eveans Dustin Potter

Jason Gerfers
Jason Gerfers

Nicole, you are absolutely right...and that makes it even more infuriating. The American public eats the formula up with a spoon and then licks the bowl.

Jason Gerfers
Jason Gerfers

Funny article. Lighten up, people. Dont get me wrong, many of these artists can play their instruments pretty well compared to their predecessors. Yet, most of these "Country" artists are as guilty as any hip-hop/pop acts (that many of you lament, naturally) out there when it comes to their style over substance approach. Ugh, and from the songs that I have heard, Florida Georgia Line is about as shallow as it gets. Nickelbag can breathe easy now, there is a whole new wave of artists that make them look like Lennon and McCartney in the songwriting department.

Nicole Marie
Nicole Marie

It's funny how the 10 people he names in that list are some of the wealthiest and most popular artists in Country music today. Guess somebody likes them..... And p.s. It's hard to take a journalist seriously who uses profanity in his publication. Grow up.

Drew Somervell
Drew Somervell

This article is spot on and anyone who disagrees probably considers Nickelback to be a really good rock band.

Pam Fouts
Pam Fouts

Those who can do. Those who can't teach. Those who can do neither criticize.

Chrissy Stough
Chrissy Stough

I guess it's only good to the RFT if your Paramore or 30 Seconds to Mars. I'll keep my country douchebags over poser douchebags any day.

Alexandra Lugger
Alexandra Lugger

Not enough fedora and skinny jeans for the ol RFT. Would you like Luke better if he played the accordion or something?

Scott Kelly
Scott Kelly

And for the fifth time this week....we get it

wyomissings
wyomissings

I feel really bad for whoever wrote this. They clearly have an underlying mental issue. Maybe you should find a therapist so you can talk about the fact that you probably had sex with your inbred parents as a child. I'm so sorry that you didn't grow up in a healthy environment and write petty articles like this to get by. 

joentytysmomma77
joentytysmomma77

and to the one commenting how bad they are, until you get a record deal, sell out numerous concerts, and actually have fans, you need to shut your mouths as well.  do what they do and then we will talk you lowlifes!!!

joentytysmomma77
joentytysmomma77

really, no wonder the RFT sucks so bad.  i love luke bryan, he is wonderful in concert, he is all about his fans.  toby keith is so patriotic, fgl is awesome.  you people that made this list up must be a bunch of drunken douchebags.  i disagree with this list 100%.  this don't make me think less of some of my FAVORITE singers and performers.  i like reading RFT for all the ridiculous stories anyways, your paper should be #1 on the douchebag list of shitty newspapers and writers!!!

joentytysmomma77
joentytysmomma77

really, no wonder the RFT sucks so bad.  i love luke bryan, he is wonderful in concert, he is all about his fans.  toby keith is so patriotic, fgl is awesome.  you people that made this list up must be a bunch of drunken douchebags.  i disagree with this list 100%.  this don't make me think less of some of my FAVORITE singers and performers.  i like reading RFT for all the ridiculous stories anyways, your paper should be #1 on the douchebag list of shitty newspapers and writers!!!

Bob Pivoroff
Bob Pivoroff

Too fucking hilarious. Brilliant article.

myrasue
myrasue

I agree and there is one country artist who tells  a story when he sings,and he tells you how you feel about things and that is Tim McGraw. he knows how to get to your soul.

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