Looks like there’s still a few ruffled feathers out there in country music. The National Traditional Country Music Association started a petition this week to try to remove Oklahoman superstar Blake Shelton from the Grand Ole Opry membership as a reaction to his comments about classic country stars today. According to Bob Everhart, President of the National Traditional Country Music Association since 1976:
“We organized a large non-profit corporation 39 years ago to prevent the very thing Blake Shelton is espousing. Today we have joined forces with the Traditional Music Association of America; Classic Country; The Real Old Farts & Jackasses; American Music Group; and several other organizations who are very concerned about the insults Blake Shelton tosses around so nonchalantly.”
His efforts are backed by Maggie Penn, the leader of a country music association in Michigan. She adds:
“We are going to march on Nashville. We are demanding that Blake Shelton be removed from the Grand Ole Opry. We are also demanding that huge radio conglomerates respond to our requests to feature more traditional and classic country music on these so-called country music radio stations. Clear Channel is one of the worst offenders. Mr. May, CEO, of Clear Channel needs to remember that the frequencies they broadcast on do not belong to them, they belong to us.”
The group is setting a march for April 17th down Music Row in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.
What do you think? Is this a dramatic overreaction, or are they justified in their protest? Sound off below:
UPDATE: Bob Everhart has sent us further details about their protest march in April.
A “March” on Nashville is now scheduled for April 17 beginning at 11am at Tony Rose Park (08 Music Circle East) with the march going down Music Row, ending at the offices of the Country Music Association, which has virtually eliminated ‘traditional’ country music from their objectives. There will be a free concert of “traditional American music” by participating musicians following the march.
The group is also circulating two petitions: one to demand more traditional country music and bluegrass music to be played on country stations nationwide, and another to remove Blake’s Opry membership.