With his new album, What Makes You Country, Luke Bryan does something he’s never done before: he takes on his haters with a song — the title track, in fact.
“I would be foolish to say that I don’t get frustrated with people picking me apart about not being country, when I know I’m country,” he admits. “But I’m also smart enough to not put the same dated, country-kinda-sounding music out. I mean, I can’t continue to put out the I’ll Stay Me album or the Tailgates & Tanlines album,” he explains.
Initially, Luke says his producer Jeff Stevens wasn’t sure about the idea.
“I turned the song in to him,” Luke remembers, “and Jeff’s like, ‘Luke, I don’t know about it. You’ve never had to kind of stand up for who you are through your music.’ He goes, ‘You don’t have to answer to your haters.’”
But Luke was dead-set on recording the song. “I said, ‘Well, Taylor Swift did it in ‘Shake It Off’ and it kinda went well for her.’ And it was done perfectly. When I heard that, I was like ‘You go, girl!’”
Luke continues: “So, with ‘What Makes You Country,’ you know, if they hear that chorus, ‘I got my dirt road cred when I was 12, on a no-cab tractor hauling hay bales’ — which I did and still do! — and they still want to call me not country, then they’re just being ignorant…” Luke says, settling the issue.
The lead single from Luke’s latest album, “Light It Up,” is just steps away from being #1. What Makes You Country arrives in stores and online this Friday.
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