So, this Accidental Racist song by Brad Paisley and LL Cool J is burning up the country airwaves. Despite all of the attention it's getting about the "controversial" subject matter, let's not forget, kids, that this is a horrible, horrible song, musically and lyrically, which, come to think of it, makes it fit right in on current country radio!
Now, this is not to say that the song's attempt to comment on southern culture and race relations is not a worthy endeavor, it just does so in such a poor way that it's laughable. For instance, why the hell is LL Cool J sending a shout out to Robert E. Lee?
Stephen Colbert, as he always does, makes this point very well through his commentary on Accidental Racist and his response song Oopsie-Daisy Homophobe (plus, it's damn funny!):
Anyway, there are many artists who tackle this subject much more intelligently with more of an accurate depiction of the South than this drivel. As this article points out, look to songs like The Band's The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, Billie Holliday's Strange Fruit, and for more of a contemporary picture, I can't recommend the Drive-By Truckers enough, especially their Southern Rock Opera, which is a double album devoted to the good and bad aspects of southern culture.
If Paisley's motivation for this song was to point out that racism still exists in the South, as if we forgot, then good for him. But there is other music that paints this picture MUCH, MUCH better.
For more on this, check out Lindsay Eanet's excellent article on BlackBook ...