Selected Readings for SCoR at SSCA in Nashville, 2018

Nashville Scene (Rodgers)
Excerpt of the CMA media guidelines discussing gun control. First news source to report the story.

NPR (All Things Considered)

Transcript and audio recording of the ATC story you heard on the radio. (O’Brien)
Has the embedded clip from Good Morning America’s twitter showing the “In Memoriam” from the broadcast.

Washington Post (Richards)
Best article on the subject of country music as a genre. The nod to the 2003 Dixie Chicks probably matters in this conversation.

<<Now, a style of music that used to proudly address the real-life struggles of real-life Americans won’t go near the issue that everyone in our harried republic is struggling with. After last month’s massacre in Las Vegas, 26 more people were killed in a shooting inside a church in Texas — the setting of countless country songs. Yet, instead of singing about life in America, today’s country stars are singing about an apolitical no-place that doesn’t actually exist. I guess it’s called Heaven South, and apparently, you protect it by circling the wagons.>>>


Billboard (Tannenbaum)
Article is an interview with the married couple (McGraw/Hill) that includes a section about gun laws published on that Thursday. Other articles tend to reference this piece when claiming that Country Music does address gun violence, although neither McGraw nor Hill made public statements at the CMAs.

Washington Post (Yahr, 11/2)
Discusses “NRA Country” and its influence on the industry.

<<“If you poll our members, they love country music,” Vanessa Shahidi, director of NRA Country, told the Tennessean in 2015. “Everything country singers sing about, they live their lives the way our members live their lives.”
NRA Country, which did not return multiple requests for comment, isn’t seen as the end-all, be-all of promotional opportunities — although it does offer a connection to millions of the organization’s members. Bill Werde, the former editorial director of Billboard magazine, recalled hearing about a country star whose music was going to be used to help publicize a “gun safety” issue. Then, he said, when the NRA became aware of it, the big plan suddenly became much smaller.
“The NRA can make your life miserable,” said Don Cusic, a country music historian and professor at Belmont University. “And they would.”>>>

Washington Post (Yahr, 11/3)
Shows the short statement by the CMA apologizing and rescinding their earlier edict

Washington Post (Yahr, 11/8)
Transcript of the opening monologue section discussing the incident

Chicago Tribune (Johnson)
Best of the rest. Many stories are pretty surface level, saying they don’t like what the CMAs did yet aren’t original enough to merit mentioning.

<<It was, all in all, too little. And what there was missed the point: Deadly shootings are a very different thing, with very different causes and potential remedies, than hurricanes.
But still, acknowledging Vegas and other recent American tragedies was more impressive than the show’s cold open, which, I think, tried for notes of solemnity but really did not get there.>>>

Time (Bruner)

Country Artist Sturgill Simpson staged a concert in the street outside of the CMA’s arena in protest of the “fascist” edict by the organization. Heavily documented on social media.

Rolling Stone (Hudak)
It’s not a good article, but it had to make the list because of the source.

All Things Considered (2017, Nov 11). For country music industry and artists, guns politics presents a minefield. NPR. Retrieved from
Bruner, R. (2017, Nov. 9).
A major country star busked outside the Country Music Awards in protest and the people loved it. Time. Retrieved from
Hudak, J. (2017, Nov 8).
Why country stars need to sound off on gun control at the CMA Awards. Rolling Stone. Retrieved from
Johnson, S. (2017, Nov 9).
Hosts address Las Vegas shooting during CMA Awards, but it’s hardly enough. The Chicago Tribune. Retrieved from
O’Brien, C. (2017, Nov 10).
WaPo writer: Why were there no calls for gun control at the CMA awards? Retrieved from
Richards, C. (2017, Nov 9).
Country music is becoming the soundtrack of a nonexistent, apolitical no-place. The Washington Post. Retrieved from
Rodgers, D.P. (2017, Nov 2).
CMA Awards to press: Don’t talk about Las Vegas, guns, politics. Nashville Scene. Retrieved from
Tannenbaum, R. (2017, Nov 9).
Tim McGraw and Faith Hill on their huge tour, healing love and ‘common sense’ gun laws. Retrieved from
Yahr, E. (2017, Nov 2).
Country music avoided politics this year. Then Las Vegas happened. Will anything change? The Washington Post. Retrieved from
Yahr, E. (2017, Nov 3).
CMA Awards apologizes, says reporters won’t be kicked out for asking questions about guns. The Washington Post. Retrieved from
Yahr, E. (2017, Nov 8).
CMA Awards: Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood make fun of President Trump in monologue. The Washington Post. Retrieved from