I was born in MO and raised on country music. Several years ago after a long flirtation with pop I primarily returned to my roots in Country Music. As a psychotherapist, the lyrics often make me cringe. It seems so many songs not only chronicle mainstream alcohol abuse but also seem to have crossed the line to promoting it.
A short list of top Country Songs this year alone:
Whiskey in My Water
Cold Beer What Your Name on it
Drunk Last Night
Drink a Beer
Drunk on a Plane
Ain’t Worth the Whiskey
and many, many more.
A few years back, I went to a Brad Paisley concert. There was an amazing amount of drinking. There were guys passed out in their seats after everyone had left. When I hear a song talking about drinking her away or if I can remember the night, it was not a good party. That is enabling and encouraging alcoholism. I hear similar conversations between the waiters and busboys in restaurants. This has become part of the culture. The new song, Drinking Class is how many people see it. I am not advocating prohibition; we saw how that worked out the first time but some responsibility. Tim McGraw recently sobered up. he credited his wife, Faith Hill with helping him clean up. I am sure he is not the only one with a drinking problem or the first or last in recovery. People are impacted by the actions of celebrities; they imitate them like children do parents. They have a responsibility to think about what they are doing and saying publicly.
The other side of this is the destruction of the middle class. First, striving to be middle class is not enough anymore or a goal. Also, for men, often sex and booze/drugs are the only pleasure they feel in life. Both remove them from the despair they often feel about their past, present and future. Without hope and obtainable goals, this is what they have to look forward to.
I will continue to listen to country music, but I will not continue to support those artists that promote drinking as a solution to life’s problems, or a life style to admired and emulated.