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Jason Aldean defends controversial ‘Try That in a Small Town’ video – TheFantasyTimes

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By Jitin Gambhir

Jason Aldean defends controversial ‘Try That in a Small Town’ video

Jason Aldean is standing his ground in the face of criticism over his latest music video, “Try That in a Small Town,” which some people have accused of having racist and “pro-lynching” connotations. Addressing the issue during a concert in Cincinnati, Ohio, on Friday night, Aldean stated, “I’ve seen a lot of stuff suggesting I am this, suggesting I am that. Here’s the thing, I feel like everybody is entitled to their opinion. You can think something all you want to, it doesn’t mean it is true.”

In the video clip shared on Twitter, the audience enthusiastically cheered as the country star proudly declared himself a “proud American.” He expressed his love for the country and his desire to see it restored to its former glory, stating, “I want to see it restored to what it once was before all this bulls—t started happening to us.” This prompted the crowd to erupt in a chant of “USA.”

Aldean then proceeded to address the backlash against his music video and performed the controversial song for his fans. The video, released last week, features Aldean singing in front of the Maury County Courthouse in Columbia, Tenn., with an American flag draped over the building. The video incorporates footage of protesters confronting police officers and burning American flags. The lyrics of the song, originally written by Kelley Lovelace, Kurt Allison, Neil Thrasher, and Tully Kennedy, include lines such as “Cuss out a cop, spit in his face / Stomp on the flag and light it up / Yeah, ya think you’re tough / Well, try that in a small town / See how far ya make it down the road.”

Critics have labeled the video as “racist” and “pro-lynching.” Some viewers pointed out that the courthouse where Aldean performed was the site of the lynching of an 18-year-old African-American man named Henry Choate in the 1920s. Despite the controversy, Aldean initially defended the video on Tuesday after it was pulled from CMT’s broadcast channel. He argued that the accusations of promoting lynching and being unsupportive of the Black Lives Matter movement were baseless and dangerous.

Variety has criticized the song as “the most contemptible country song of the decade,” and social media users have accused Aldean of promoting violence. However, Aldean remains steadfast in his support for the song, declaring himself a “proud American.”

“The View” hosts also expressed their concerns about Aldean’s music video and lyrics, suggesting that it may be interpreted as a critique of the Black Lives Matter movement. Whoopi Goldberg highlighted the importance of understanding the context and intentions behind the imagery used in the video.

This is not the first time that Jason Aldean and his wife, Brittany Aldean, have faced criticism for their controversial views. In September 2022, Jason was dropped by his publicity firm after Brittany made transphobic comments on Instagram. Jason defended his wife’s comments at the time, sparking further backlash.

Jason Aldean is standing his ground after people slammed his latest music video, “Try That in a Small Town,” for racist and “pro-lynching” connotations.

“‘I’ve seen a lot of stuff suggesting I am this, suggesting I am that,” he said while onstage in Cincinnati, Ohio, Friday night in a video posted to Twitter.

“Here’s the thing, I feel like everybody is entitled to their opinion you can think something all you want to, it doesn’t mean it is true.”

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In the clip, the audience cheered as the country star declared himself a “proud American.”

“I love our country, I want to see it restored to what it once was before all this bulls—t started happening to us,” he added.

Jason Aldean singing.
Jason Aldean is standing by his controversial music video and lyrics for “Try That in A Small Town.”
YouTube

The crowd then erupted in a “USA” chant.

Aldean went on to speak about his feelings towards the backlash over his music video before playing the contentious song for his fans.

The music video, released last week, features the “Dirt Road Anthem” crooner singing in front of the Maury County Courthouse in Columbia, Tenn., with an American flag draped over the front of the building.

Jason Aldean singing
The video has been labeled as “racist” and “pro-lynching.”
YouTube

Videos of protesters going up against police officers and burning American flags were projected onto the building as Aldean, 46, belted out the controversial lyrics.

“Cuss out a cop, spit in his face / Stomp on the flag and light it up / Yeah, ya think you’re tough / Well, try that in a small town / See how far ya make it down the road,” he sang.

While Aldean is the voice of the song, the lyrics were originally written by Kelley Lovelace, Kurt Allison, Neil Thrasher and Tully Kennedy.

Protester flipping off police officers
It featured footage of protesters going head-to-head with police officers.
YouTube

As TheFantasyTimes previously reported, fans and critics quickly took to social media to point out a historical reference to the Grammy nominee’s location choice in the music video.

The courthouse that Aldean proudly sang in front of was the location where an 18-year-old African-American man named Henry Choate was lynched in the 1920s.

Aldean initially spoke out against the backlash on Tuesday after CMT pulled his music video from their broadcast channel.

Jason Aldean singing in front of courthouse
Critics also called out the location of Aldean’s music video, which took place at a courthouse where an 18-year-old African-American man was lynched.
YouTube

“In the past 24 hours I have been accused of releasing a pro-lynching song (a song that has been out since May) and was subject to the comparison that I (direct quote) was not too pleased with the nationwide BLM protests,” he posted on his Twitter account.

“These references are not only meritless, but dangerous.”


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Aldean also defended the lyrics, writing that there is “not a single lyric in the song that references race or points to it.”

Despite his defense, Variety has labeled the piece as “the most contemptible country song of the decade” and social media users have called out the dad of four for promoting violence.

Jason Aldean performing.
However, the Grammy nominee stood by his music Friday night, calling himself a “proud American.”
YouTube

On Thursday, “The View” hosts used their platform to call out Aldean’s questionable music video and lyrics.

“He talks about life in a small town, and it’s different, and he chose these images,” Whoopi Goldberg began.

“He’s got folks from the Black Lives Matter movement, and he’s talking about people taking care of each other, and I find it so interesting that it never occurred to Jason or the writers that that’s what these folks were doing: They were taking care of the people in their town because they didn’t like what they saw.”

Jason Aldean performing.
“I love my country, I love my family and I will do anything I can to protect that,” he said while onstage in Ohio.
YouTube

Continuing, she said, “You just have to realize that when you make it about Black Lives Matter, people kind of say, ‘Well, are you talking about black people? What are you talking about here?’”

Aldean and his wife, Brittany Aldean, have been under fire in the past for their controversial views.

In September 2022, the “Tonight Looks Good On You” artist was dropped by his publicity firm of 17 years after Brittany, 35, made transphobic comments on Instagram.

A selfie of Jason Aldean and wife Brittany
Jason and his wife, Brittany Aldean, have been under fire for transphobic comments in the past.
Instagram/@jasonaldean

At the time, she thanked her parents for “not changing [her] gender” during her “tomboy phase” as a child in a clip posted to her Instagram last August.

“Lmao!! I’m glad they didn’t too, cause you and I wouldn’t have worked out,” Jason wrote in the comment section at the time.

Though the conversation drew major backlash, the singer came to his wife’s defense again after she called parents allowing their trans children to transition “one of the worst evils.”

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