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Bubble gum and dead cowboys

Country Musings by Robert Loy, June 1997

I don't listen to the radio much anymore - not enough Patty Loveless there, and too many good Books on Tape - so I may not be the best trend-spotter. But a few months ago it seems I couldn't turn on my radio without hearing some chap sing "Ring around the rosie, pocketful of dreams and posy." Today I turned it on and sat there stunned as some guy trilled, "One-two, buckle my shoe, three-four, shut the door. . ." et cetera.

Now I'm all for expanding C & W's audience, but does the Mother Goose set actually buy that many albums? Is Bubble Gum country going to be the next big thing? Can we next look forward to hearing Clay Walker singing of Humpty-Dumpty and his great fall?

Speaking of Clay Walker, when you hear that name don't you always picture somebody with dirty red feet?

(This next question is only for those who remember Marty Robbins.) Did you notice that in the video for John Berry's "She's Taken a Shine" the diner is named "Rosie's Cantina"? Didn't you expect to see handsome young cowboys dead on the floor there?

And another thing: How come every critic in the world refers to an artist's second CD as his or her "sophomore release," but when that same artist releases his third and fourth albums nobody calls them junior and senior releases?