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Rock Artists Gone Country

It’s no surprise that some pretty notable rock artists have tackled country music.  A lot of them were brought up listening to it and that influence can felt in some of their music.

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I know it can be shocking when we hear that one of our favorite rock artists has put out a country influenced song, but it’s a genre that touches all walks of life.  A lot of the rock bands come out of small towns and from down south where music like that is all around them.

Maybe at first they are making the hard rock music to get away from that, but sooner or later they start to embrace their roots.  Kid Rock has probably had the most success with the leap from rock to country, but others have done it too.  Aaron Lewis of Staind just recently came out with a country album as well.  Seether hails from South Africa was was recorded their last album in Nashville, TN the country music capital of the world.  The influence of that is definitely felt on that new record.

Some of the classic country artists were way more badass than rock artists of the time.  Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willy Nelson, Kris Kristofferson were all doing controversial country music back in the 1960′s and 70′s.  Hank Williams Jr was crazy at the time, and when he plays live it’s a rock show, not a country one.  I mean even George Jones use to get hammered and drive his tractor around.  He was one of the most volatile musicians ever.  I love listening to these guys.

Older rock artists have kind of followed their crowds over to the country side of things.  As people get older they kind of mellow.  Guys like Jon Bon Jovi have learned that rather than try and do the same thing, instead evolve and make the kind of music your original audience is into.  So here are a couple of my favorite country songs done by rock artists.

Aaron Lewis- Country Boy


This is actually a really well made country song. I have always felt a country influence in his lyrics. It was only a matter of time before he explored his country past. Plus, Lewis has a great voice for Country music.

Kid Rock – Roll On


It’s no surprise that Kid has embraced the country music genre. He always had a bit of a southern rock influence, he just mixed it with hip hop. He has been doing a lot of writing with Hank Williams Jr and Bob Seger in recent years and has evolved into a great, great song writer.

Bon Jovi – Who Says You Can’t Go Home


It sounds disgusting and poppy, but I liked this song as soon as I heard it. The whole Have a Nice Day album by Bon Jovi has a heavy country influence and this song proves that if they wanted to leave rock behind, they could.

If you dig both rock and country music, don’t forget that our sister station, WGNA, has Country Fest going on tomorrow at the Altamont fair grounds.  I have attended in the past and it’s just a gigantic party.  Even if you’re not that into country music, it’s a good time.  Plus, it’s a great warm up to the real party that is Q-RUPTION!

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