CMA Awards: Is Country Finally Cool?

Julie Ryan Evans
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Sheryl CrowAt the CMA Awards last night, I imagine more than a few old-timers were calling to mind the words of Barbara Mandrell's famous tune: "I Was Country When Country Wasn't Cool." Because all of a sudden, it  seems everyone wants to be part of the country club

I mean, whoever would have thought Gwyneth Paltrow -- she of Hollywood royalty and Goop -- would be up crooning a tune in Nashville? But there she was, and she was good!

There were a host of others there who years ago would have likely scoffed at the mere suggestion of country music. Today they're embracing it and trying to edge their way into what's now been seen as a pretty cool scene.

For example:

Rocker Sheryl Crow was not only there, but sang with Miranda Lambert. The two did an amazing rendition of Loretta Lynn's "Coal Miner's Daughter," and then Loretta came out and joined them. Sheryl Crow singing with Loretta Lynn -- head-spinning stuff.

One of the best CMA moments ever as far as I'm concerned.

Sissy Spacek -- who played Lynn in the movie about her life -- was there to introduce the whole thing.

Then there was Kid Rock, whose very name seems like a strange fit for the country world, but he's been trying to straddle it for awhile now. His performance was one of the worst of the night, however.

Rock's buddy Uncle Kracker was there too trying to deepen his country roots.

"I didn't want to be that guy that's (like), 'I'm gonna make a country record,' he told the Canadian Press. "I didn't want to be that cat. But I love it. Everybody's been above and beyond with me."

Darius Rucker, formerly of Hootie and the Blowfish, was also there, having made the country conversion a few years back. Of his attendance at the CMAs, he said:

"I've been here a few years, and the first couple of times, I wasn't really a part of it, I was an outsider. Now to me, it's cool to walk her and know everybody and get hugs from everybody."

The more, the merrier!

Which stars are you most surprised to see embracing country music?


Image via YouTube


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