Let me begin this by saying I had the opportunity to see Ray Benson's band, Asleep at the Wheel, just last weekend. It was my first time, and WOW. They are super talented. Even my wife, who doesn't like Country Music, let alone Country Swing, was very impressed.

I mean I would never have called myself a fan of their music, mostly because I'd never taken the time to listen to it much, but this is a band of professionals. From stage presence to sound, and talent - they oozed with talent - this is what a GRAMMY winning band should sound and look like.

Having said that Benson has called out CMA and ACM Entertainer of the year, Luke Bryan. In an interview with Lowell Sun before a Massachusetts appearance, he had this to say.

“You can relate to picking up girls, drinking beer and hot pants. The thematic stuff is what bothers me,” Benson said. “I don’t like Luke Bryan and those guys, because there’s no originality. Every song follows pretty much the same chord progression. That’s not a bad thing, in and of itself... Hank Williams used the same four chords, but there’s no melodic integrity and the words are just silly. You listen to Hank Williams, Merle Haggard, Patsy Cline or Willie Nelson. None sound like the other. It’s individuality at its best. Patsy Cline was a pop singer, but with country sensibilities. Let me qualify this by saying there’s great country music made today by lots of people, it’s just not getting on mainstream radio.”

Strong words. What do you think?

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