Country Music Blog Rodeo: Passing the Torch in 2013

CountryMusicIsLove has been asked to participate in the first-ever “Blog Rodeo” along with a handful of other Country music bloggers. To kick-off the “rodeo,” we were all asked to share our thoughts on what we think will be a (or the) major development or event in Country music in 2013.

While we could talk all day about what’s to come in 2013 – new music from artists like Tim McGraw and The Band Perry, the Blake Shelton/Luke Bryan-hosted ACM Awards, new tours and the 2013 CMA Music Festival – we’ve narrowed it down to one topic: the passing of the torch.

We’ve seen it coming for years – artists such as Jason Aldean, Eric Church, and Luke Bryan have been steadily climbing the ladder to become Country music’s newest superstars. With platinum-selling albums, a handful of No.1 singles and record-breaking headlining tours under their belt, they, the so-called “frat-boys” of Country music, have begun to take over the genre.

This is where the hypothetical torch comes in. The cycle happens within Country music every few years. It happened in the late 1990s/early 2000s when artists like McGraw, Brad Paisley and Kenny Chesney began to steal the spotlight from legends like Vince Gill, Garth Brooks and Clint Black. When it comes to the female side of the genre, we saw this not too long ago when Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift and Miranda Lambert rose to super-stardom while powerhouse vocalists like Faith Hill, Martina McBride and Reba slowly stepped aside to make way for the new girls in town. The torch has been passed before and it’s happening again.

Much like it has in years past, the genre is beginning to be lead by a new group of Country males and we think 2013 will be the turning point for this new crop of artists. When you look at album sales, radio charts and ticket sales, the “young guns” are kicking ass and taking names. Aldean, Bryan and Church have paid their dues and are ready to take the torch and run with it, but in order for that to happen, other superstars will have to prepare to pass it off. But who will be willing to do so?

McGraw, Paisley, Chesney and Keith Urban all have new albums and tours coming this year, and Toby Keith, who released a new album last fall, plans to hit the road again this summer as well. Will they be overshadowed by these rising stars, or is there enough room for everyone?

Our prediction is that throughout the course of 2013, we’ll continue to see Aldean, Bryan and Church rise to super-stardom while the veterans maintain a steady hold on their careers. But, with another crop of soon-to-be mega-stars like Lee Brice, Jake Owen, Brantley Gilbert and Chris Young following in their footsteps, this cycle could come and go more quickly than ever before.

Blog Rodeo Roundup: See What Everyone Else Is Saying About Country Music in 2013!

Be sure to join us on Thursday, January 24 from 12:00-1:00pm CST for a live #BlogRodeo Twitter chat. Click HERE to follow all of the participants.