Pro Gun-Control Nashville Band Says They Want to Open For Jason Aldean

Second Amendment

The country music world has become increasingly divided by culture wars and political differences, but Old Crow Medicine Show wants to bring people together.

The Nashville Americana band, best known for writing “Wagon Wheel” and recently nominated for a Grammy for their 2023 album Jubilee, has repeatedly called for stricter gun control measures in the wake of the Covenant school shooting in March. But they’ve also opened for outspoken conservative and NRA supporter Hank Williams Jr., and say that they want to tour with polarizing “Try That in a Small Town” hitmaker Jason Aldean.

“Jason? I wish he’d call,” Old Crow frontman Ketch Secor told Rolling Stone in a new interview. “I’ve been listening to him since ‘Amarillo Sky.’ I don’t know why nobody realizes how good we are in an arena. We are a killer warm-up, particularly for these artists that are playing in a style that is a thin definition of country music. We can put a lot more gravy on that biscuit than Aldean can. ‘Cause we got the f—ing fiddles to prove it.”

“I think that songs like [“Try That] in a Small Town” by Jason Aldean have a pretty narrow spectrum for its listenership,” he added. “Country folk love Jesus and trucks and Pensacola, sure, but they also probably would love to hear Woody Guthrie sing ‘This Land Is Your Land,’ especially if they were sung by like a second and third grade recital.”

“We’ve been doing a lot of shows with Hank Jr. this year and that’s just another perfect example of how Old Crow has this unique position. There are members of our band who grew up in evangelical Christian households, and there are members of our band who own pistols, and there are members of our band who care a lot about the Second Amendment. But at the end of the day, I’m pretty sure we all voted blue.”

“So, we can get up there in front of NRA types in Idaho and Arizona and we will rock them,” Secor continued. “The thing about music is that good songs have no allegiance. I look out at the crowd and I see the tribes gathering in front of me, the ones that represent the two sides of the culture wars, and I hear them singing along to, ‘Rock me mama like a wagon wheel.'”

“I think country music has a lot harder time with presenting a package that can really have meaningful appeal to the left. And I think that’s a choice. Country music in the past, since the Trump years, has found improvement of margins by preaching to the choir and stoking them flames. There’s a lot of money in stoking them flames. But Hank ain’t on the radio, and neither is Old Crow. So we don’t have the same rules … I am so untethered and free, I can go tour with anybody I want. I got a lot less to lose maybe? Because my tent is set up outside of the big tent.”

“I don’t watch a lot of Fox News or Newsmax but I watch enough to know strategically what’s going on. And I just say anybody who picks their tribe and silo, come see Old Crow open up for Hank, because we are a wrecking ball to that silo. I say this [onstage] every night: ‘You might think this about that or that about this, but music forges a circle that can never be broken and inside that circle, we are all the same.’ And then we play ‘Will the Circle Be Unbroken.’ I love that song because it’s a question. I think that how we choose to answer that question says a lot about who we are as a nation.”

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