Over the past two decades, country music has grown into a crowded, glamorous, and over-produced genre. Enter Zach Bryan, a 23-year-old singer with a guitar, a scruffy mustache, and a husky, hopelessly romantic voice. A native of Oklahoma, Bryan posts most of his music straight from his iPhone to his YouTube channel. His popularity exploded after he released a video of himself performing a song of his own.go south” while dripping sweat by the campfire. Since then, his fans have begged him to "make it big" and hailed him as "country music's savior."
Country lyrics have long celebrated the working-class lifestyle, the countryside, and life's simple pains and pleasures. Country music tends to stick to a few acoustic instruments and vocals. Deep down, it has its roots in simple and rural life. Country music was born in the Appalachian region of Tennessee and evolved from "hillbilly music" and the blues. The invention of radio helped popularize music, with radio shows such as "Grand Ole Opry" being broadcast across the country. As the genre grew in popularity, its sound slowly evolved. Bluegrass became honky tonk, folk rock, country pop.
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Country pop is the version of country music we're most familiar with, featuring stars like Carrie Underwood,Taylor Swift, Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Sam Hunt, Reba McEntire, Dixie Chicks and Blake Shelton. Country pop is defined by its assimilation into mainstream music, specifically the presence of a song in the US Country Top 40.Popit's often far from authentic: Stars in cowboy boots and heavy makeup rake in millions of dollars singing about pickup trucks and blue-collar jobs to huge crowds. Country-pop singers often repeat the same time-honoured lyrical tropes that were often written by contract lyricists and producers. They are pretty faces and mouths to spit out lucrative words and millions of fans love it.
Country music has moved away from its origins. Pop culture expectations make it difficult for authentic country musicians to stand out. Breaking through the scene requires managers and producers, which requires a lot of money and commitment.
However, Zach Bryan made it. Bryan has been in the Navy for six years, in keeping with his family's tradition, and spends his free time writing music for his own enjoyment and satisfaction. Bryan decided to upload his music to YouTube in 2017 without hoping for recognition. Unlike other applicantscountry musicianMost of Bryan's songs are recorded by friends with an iPhone camera in a bedroom, garage or on a warm night around a campfire and uploaded directly to YouTube.
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Bryan closes his eyes in most of his videos, a film of sweat showing that he is clearly caught up in the heat of the moment. He sings without a microphone or amplifier, crackling his frequent voice to enhance his signature sound. When she opens her mouth her soul pours out, both through her lyrics and the soulful, unfiltered wails of her voice. His lyrics are honest, hopeful and often self-deprecating. According to a fan in the "Heading South" comments section on YouTube, "He doesn't sing the lyrics. He makes her bleed.
Zach Bryan - Heading south
Apparently disillusioned with the glamor of Nashville and country music on radio stations, Bryan's fans have come to expect authenticity and rawness from him.comment areashis YouTube videos often have listeners who hate the current direction of country music and find solace in the singer's bravery.
— “The best Raw song I've seen on YouTube in at least 3 years. Guitar and voice directly into the microphone. No mixes, no effects. Simply good."
— "Before, I hated country, then I realized I had never really listened to country."
“We need more campfire artists like this these days. Just a voice and a guitar. Your stuff is awesome man."
— “This is the third song I've heard from this guy. Why aren't your songs on the radio? Much better than what they play nowadays.
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His videos quickly exploded in popularity, with fans in the comments begging him to keep making music and vociferously wishing he would replace the over-produced country-pop idols that clog country music stations today. And indeed, he had the opportunity to do just that.
Following the release of her 2019 album "DeAnn', an album he recorded in his barn with basic recording equipment and surrounded by friends, Bryan landed numerous record deals with major country record labels. He rejected them all. We could easily theorize about his decision, but we don't have to; his lyrics explain why. In his 2020 release “me and mineBryan sings, "They tell me I can sell my soul for a dream and a few shows / I guess they don't understand how deep loyalty runs / For some boys I've got a barn that we built out of pure Douglas fir / Wicked songs written down to the horses - that's what a kid prefers, okie /... We started this thing with the smiling kids, I think we gotta run / The radio man came to ruin it all while bragging about being number one.
me and mine
The lyrics make it clear that Bryan has no interest in spoiling the simple, happy life he leads by signing with a "radio man," which he says would be the same as "selling my soul." Signing to a major label can mean giving up your artistic integrity and freedom for just a "worthless dollar," according to their "go south"Music lyrics.
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No, Bryan isn't looking for a hit radio single and a sold-out tour. On his latest album, the musician explains, "I don't want any of this, I just hope that while listening, you can find some hope." She uses her songs to speak her truth and pour out her soul. He's happy to casually write songs and release them for whoever can find them.
He reaffirms his lyrical sentiments in prose on an Instagramdirectoryposted on May 1st before the release of her album "Elisabeth". He tells his followers that he's "graciously turned down a lot of big labels this year just so I can take that on with my friends like we did last year," then explains he doesn't think the big music industry is his thing and will soon be He's going on a one-year assignment in the Marines.
Bryan lives the life of a trueLandMusician. He works 12 hour days, sits around the campfire with his friends and pours out a piece of his soul with a guitar and a song. The old t-shirts and unkempt mustache are not performative; For Bryan, like his music, his looks are real and unfiltered. In his humble way, Bryan embodies everything we can learn from country music. in the words of oneFan, Bryan "It's About Country Music".