My Country Gold

Thirty years ago, back when I composed my first tune,
country music wasn’t all that cool;
anyone who said so, was a fool,
and better off in engineering school.

The only exceptions: Waylon, Willie, John and June;
everybody else seemed pretty old;
and despite the records that they sold,
they seemed to leave me pretty cold.

It seems since Hank the Senior died,
you want to know the truth,
that country music lost its sense of innocence and youth;
and split itself from rock and roll
to give the city folks
something they could ridicule with cleverness and jokes.
So despite I what I knew inside,
I left that music be;
pretending that it wasn’t part of me.

Thirty years ago, when I first figured how to play
most country singers came to stardom late;
hell, Merle Haggard sung his first at 28;
mixing youth and country? Don’t hallucinate.

Who’d a thought that things would change to how they are today?
Past thirty, and you haven’t too much chance;
You’re judged by how you fill out some tight pants;
And history? Forget it. Learn to dance.

It seems to me, since Elvis died,
you want to know the truth,
that country music figured it had best reclaim the youth;
and joined itself to rock and roll
to convince city folks
they could wear cowboy boots and not
be thought of as a joke.
So despite I what I knew inside,
I left that music be;
pretending that it wasn’t part of me.

Thirty years gone by, and only me that’s still the same;
listening to ol’ Merle and Bill Monroe;
measuring the hours as they go;
too old for stardom out on Music Row.

No regrets, and country music surely’s not to blame;
I’ve no consistent action to defend;
no single kind of music as my friend;
just wonderings and lots of might have beens.

It seems to me since Johnny died,
you want to know the truth,
that country music’s cut old age and now clings to the youth;
who start from rock and and roll
and write to give the city folks
a way to reconnect with life between this great land’s coasts.
Because it’s what I know inside,
though now I’m far too old;
I still pan for that solid country gold.

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