Country music has long had a love-hate relationship with technology. Country singers love cars, trucks and trains. Airplanes aren’t well regarded, and computers and cell phones are usually targets of ridicule. Country songs are usually a pretty good reflector of America’s gut feelings. Listed below are some selections that reference the internet directly, as well as a couple of statements about technology in general.
- “I Still Like Baloney” – Alan Jackson – “I got a laptop that sits on a desk, I don’t use it much except to check some ole car from yesterday”.
- “Welcome to the Future” – Brad Paisley – “And I’d have given anything to have my own PacMan game at home. I used to have to get a ride down to the arcade; now I’ve got it on my phone”.
- “Phones are Ringin’ All Over Town” – Martina McBride – “He’s got friends of his callin’ friends of hers, but she’s nowhere to be found. Phones are ringin’ all over town”.
- “Dreamin’ in Color, Livin’ in Black and White” – Billy Ray Cyrus – “The cool of the night reveals the spark of a sweeter light, so she’s dreamin’ in color and livin’ in black and white”.
- “Turn on the Radio” – Reba McEntire – “Try to call, Twitter me, text until your fingers bleed”.
- 20th Century – Alabama – “We had movin’ pictures and radio, and Broadway, country, rock and roll, In 1900 who’d a bet we’d all be surfing on the internet. . .From blocks of ice to air condition, telegraph to television, in 1900 who’d a known we’d all wind up with pocket phones”.
- “Science” – Willie Nelson – “I was just guessing at numbers and figures, pulling the puzzles apart, questions of science, science and progress, oh take me back to the start”.
- “Online” – Brad Paisley – “When you got my kind of stats, it’s hard to get a date, let alone a real girlfriend, but I grow another foot and I lose a bunch of weight every time I log in”.
- “1982” – Randy Travis – “Operator, please connect me with 1982, I need to make apologies for what I didn’t do”.
- “Amerika v 6.0 (The Best We Can Do)” – Steve Earle - “Four score and a hundred and fifty years ago our forefathers made us equal as long as we can pay, yeah, but maybe that wasn’t exactly what they was thinkin’, version six-point-oh of the American way”.
Technology has come a long way since “Lonesome Whistle Blues” but country music seems to be fighting it tooth and nail. If anybody can take us back in time, and maybe to Luckenbach, Texas, it’s going to be a country singer.