Brooks & Dunn

Jul 27 2003 Kelly Norton
Last week was a tough one, as it brought about an end to my long overdue vacation and then quickly deteriorated into two days of management level meetings. brooks and dunThe weekend that follows a vacation is never much of a weekend, so I veered off the beaten path and accepted an invitation to see Brooks & Dunn down at the Hi Fi Buys … uh … Coca Cola … uh … Coors Light … uh … Corporate-cared-for Amphitheatre. The last time I had seen a country show was sometime in the early eighties when I saw the Alabama Roll On tour. After that, I had to shy away from country music seeing as I was trying to be cool in a small South Georgia town, where your degree of coolness has to be figured by the distance you maintain from the local mainstream. The local mainstream was of course country and so I missed country music’s rise into pop culture. As a result, I’m left with the notion that country music is David Allan Coe on my dad’s cassette player, wailing out “Just divorced was written on the window of the car it looked like a tombstone parked outside the local bar …” or bluegrass which I later decided challenges the classical notion that music is either Dionysian or Apollonian. Every once and a while, I check in on mainstream country and every time I find it embarrassingly intermingled with mainstream rock, which is embarrassingly intermingled with overt commercialism. So, while the Brooks & Dunn’s music was pretty good, I was expecting to hear them refer to themselves as “Coors Light’s Brooks and Dunn” since the show was the “Coors Light Brooks & Dunn Neon Circus” or something like that. I left realizing that mainstream is a genre and Country is still David Allan Coe and Bluegrass, rock is still Operation Ivy, the Misfits, and the Pixies and commercialism still abhors originality. After the Brooks & Dunn show, I was not persuaded to either buy their new album “Red Dirt Road” or a 12-pack of Coors Light, instead I’m headed to the record store in search of albums by Flatt & Scruggs and Béla Fleck. And if that ain't country, you can kiss my …