If music had a smell, country music from 1960 to the mid 1980s would smell like some combination of a pool hall a bowling alley and a garage. The new country music would smell like that Hello Kitty store in the mall that sells lip gloss to 3rd grade girls. If you want to be a star in the new country music, the Hello Kitty country music, you should follow these steps.
1. Address Your Head
You’ve got three options here. First, you can go with the standard cowboy hat but that may be too country for today’s country music fans so tread lightly on this one. Your most likely option is to stick with the trucker hat. You know, the kind with a logo for Crazy Ned’s Truck and Tractor Service or American Eagle on the front and fishnet on the back. Back in the day, men didn’t so much wear these hats, they just sort of placed them on the top of their heads. Today you’ll need to beat it up real good to make it look like you’ve been working and pull it down real low over your eyes. Either that or turn it sideways with one side of the hat covering one of your ears. This way, if country music doesn’t work out, the rodeo clown industry is calling your name.
Your third option is a bit more risky and could be ahead of it’s time but it’s still worth a shot. Pick the hat that works for you and cut a hole in the top so that your hair sticks out. This way people will be able to see your blonde highlights. This could be a complete disaster for your career or you could get invited to open up for Rascal Flatts.
2. Listen to Boy Bands
Songs about trains, fighting and boys being named Sue don’t get much love from the kind of crowd that likes to shop at the Hello Kitty store in the mall so you’ll want to stay away from those themes. Instead, you should find a few old songs from the Backstreet Boys and make them your own. Here’s how it works.
Backstreet Boys lyrics:
“Quit playin’ games with my heart
Before you tear us apart.”
These lyrics are sung over techno sounding computer music. You’ll need to change that but not too much. Just add a banjo and fiddle so that you can tell everyone that you’re, “getting back to your roots,” and throw in a fake country accent and you’re all set.
“Baby, quit yer game playin’ with my heart
Or, darlin’, you gonna tear us apart.”
Congratulations! You just won yourself a Grammy.
Write a song about America. More specifically, write a song about how if America got in a fight with any other country, that other country would get a broken arm and a bloody nose. The Hello Kitty crowd will only kind of like this but here’s the key, their father’s will love it. This is the best of both worlds for an artist. Now, when there’s a family fight over whether to watch Duck Dynasty or The Wizards of Waverly Place, both parties will go to their room, slam the door and put on your music. Jackpot!
Oh, I almost forgot. In the video for this song, be sure to wear a shirt that looks like the American flag, ride a motorcycle and have a gospel choir singing in the background, preferably while floating in the sky.
Don’t write any songs about what it’s actually like to live in the country. This would really alienate your target audience. I’ve checked and there are no Hello Kitty stores in the country. Only Ingles. Instead, write songs about what music executives in Los Angeles and New York think that people in the country do. This includes but is not limited to the following: watermelon races, chasing greased pigs, having a crush on some girl named Ellie May, being friends with a boy named Cleetus and checking one another for ticks. (Editor’s note: Nobody knows what a watermelon race is but it doesn’t matter. It sounds like something somebody might do in the country and that’s good enough.)
If you follow these easy steps you’re sure to be the next big thing. You may not have talent or a story to tell and that’s okay. Story telling was for the old guys and talent went out of style with the advent of the computer. This formula will give you much more than either one of those things. You’ll have mareketability. And blonde highlights. And that’s two things Hank Sr. never had.