Some days I like YouTube more than others. A couple years ago I was surfing the ol' Internets and stumbled across a Chris Stapleton video. Dude was onstage at some award show just tearing it up! With some soulful vocals straight outta Motown in the 60's! And a guitar that's been beat all to hell. But here's the twist. He's a Country music artist. Sure, he looks the part. With a big ass beard and cowboy hat, he definitely LOOKS the part. But that's where it ends. This guy is different. Within 10 seconds of listening, I knew I had stumbled across something special. Oh, I probably should've mentioned he was onstage jamming with Justin Timberlake.
It was a really odd mix, but it fucking worked. And this big ol truck driver looking dude was KILLING it. It's that old Hollywood thing where you don't know who the guy is, but you can't stop watching him. Star quality shit. Now I'll let you in on another little secret: I'm not a huge Country Music guy. Most of the stuff I'm exposed to looks like it was drawn up in corporate board room. For real. I'm not gonna name names, but you know what I'm talking about. Just some poor soul who was forced to wear ripped up jeans and a cowboy hat. Singing about drinking beer on Tuesday cause some asshole in a suit knew it would sell to a certain demographic. I hate that shit. Don't try to fool me. That dude is about as Country as my dentist. Go fuck yourself.
That's why Stapleton is such a breath of fresh air. He's the real deal. It's not an act. You can just tell. He didn't come out of some corporate music factory. He just seems to love music, and when he sings, he's really saying something. And it sounds great. Cause he's got soul and he means it. In the desert of pre-packaged pop stars he is a welcome glass of cool water. And bonus: Like most artists that are worth a nickel, he's not locked into one genre. He can cross-over to soul or pop like you or I would change sneakers. One second he's wailing away about lost love and whiskey, and by the time you blink, he's seamlessly switched over to Motown. It's amazing, it's flawless, it's wonderful and I dig it!
Yup, I'm gushing over Stapleton. I want this dude to be everywhere. So the next kid coming up has some hope. You don't have to look perfect. You don't have to go thru the corporate music factory. You just need to sound good, have some soul, work at your craft and maybe you can make it big too. I've seen the Stars they want us to like. I'm much more interested in the real thing.