Premieres Tonight at 8pm ET
The decade's most triggering comedy
Republican presidential candidates Ron DeSantis and Donald Trump defended country music star Jason Aldean on Wednesday amid backlash against his latest hit song.
The 46-year-old singer’s “Try That In A Small Town” song hit the airwaves in May, but it wasn’t until he released a video for it on July 14 that the song started generating headlines claiming it was “racist,” “pro-lynching,” and more. Following the backlash, Country Music Television (CMT) pulled the singer’s music video and has yet to explain why. Aldean has hit back against the criticism, calling it “meritless” and “dangerous.”
“When the media attacks you, you’re doing something right,” the Florida governor wrote on Twitter. “@Jason_Aldean has nothing to apologize for.”
— Ron DeSantis (@RonDeSantis) July 19, 2023
About six hours later, the former president also released a short statement on social media, writing, “Jason Aldean is a fantastic guy who just came out with a great new song. Support Jason all the way. MAGA!!!”
— Jason Miller (@JasonMillerinDC) July 20, 2023
After the song was pulled and Aldean’s response, the ballad ended up shooting to the top of the all-genre chart, knocking out current chart toppers like Morgan Wallen’s “Last Night” and Luke Combs’ remake of the Tracy Chapman song “Fast Car.”
The song also jumped from the 11th spot to number one by Tuesday night on the iTunes Country Top 40 chart.
On Tuesday, the country star hit back at the criticism and released a lengthy statement on Twitter, slamming the idea the song is anything but a cry for Americans to come back together.
“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,” Aldean tweeted. “These references are not only meritless, but dangerous.”
“There is not a single lyric in the song that references race or points to it — and there isn’t a single video clip that isn’t real news footage — and while I can try and respect others to have their own interpretation of a song with music — this one goes too far,” he said. “As so many pointed out, I was present at Route 91 — where so many lost their lives — and our community recently suffered another heartbreaking tragedy. NO ONE, including me, wants to continue to see senseless headlines or families ripped apart.”
“Try That In A Small Town, for me, refers to the feeling of a community that I had growing up, where we took care of our neighbors, regardless of differences of background or belief,” he concluded. “Because they were our neighbors, and that was above any differences. My political views have never been something I’ve hidden from, and I know that a lot of us in this Country don’t agree on how we get back to a sense of normalcy where we go at least a day without a headline that keeps us up at night. But the desire for it to — that’s what this song is about.”