Thursday 10 Jul

Next big thing

As far as songs go, few prove as challenging to sing as our national anthem.

It’s a technically demanding tune from first note to last, to be sure, beginning with a low bellow that quickly soars toward star-punching high notes, eventually swelling to a show-stopping crescendo that even the most seasoned performer can have trouble mastering.

07/09/2014 | Comments 0

Sheriff Woody

Woody Guthrie Folk Festival featuring Jimmy LaFave, Arlo Guthrie and more

Wednesday through Sunday



07/09/2014 | Comments 0

California dreamin’

Modern Pantheist with The Wurly Birds and Larry Chin

9 p.m. Sunday

Blue Note Lounge 

2408 N. Robinson Ave.



07/02/2014 | Comments 0

Major League tunes

Chipper Jones with The Hitt Boyz, Foxburrows and Milk Jr

8 p.m. Saturday

VZD’s Restaurant & Club

4200 N. Western Ave.


07/02/2014 | Comments 0

Neon colors

Utah-based rockers Neon Trees spent a hot summer night setting fire to Tulsa’s legendary Cain’s Ballroom on June 19. Rounding out the aural palette were Smallpools, a lively L.A. powerhouse, and Nightmare and the Cat, a cadre of black-clad Brit/American alt-rockers. Neon Trees’ latest record, Pop Psychology, was the night’s flux capacitor, transporting all who were willing to a neon-soaked parallel universe.
06/25/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Reviews · Country · Toby Keith — Hope on the...

Toby Keith — Hope on the Rocks

Louis Fowler November 28th, 2012

Sometimes, irony can come back to bite you on the ass.

For many years, on my late, lamented Colorado-based radio show, Damaged Hearing, whenever I felt like especially annoying the decidedly unpatriotic community-radio audience, I would sing along, loud and proud, to Oklahoma-born Toby Keith’s “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue.”

Of course, the more I would sing along to the song, the more I committed it to memory, and it soon became my signature karaoke song. And then so did “I Love This Bar." And then “Beer for My Horses." And before I knew it, I was a full-blown, completely unironic, defend-his-music-to-the-death Toby Keith fan.

Let’s be honest: Toby Keith (and his songwriters) can write a damn catchy tune. Nearly every single gets stuck in your head as you hear it blasting on Ford Truck Spring Sell-A-Bration commercials.

On his 16th (!) studio album, Hope on the Rocks, the sustaining theme is drinking, drinking and more drinking. The surprisingly depressing title cut opens, playing like a Nashville variation of Lou Reed’s “Walk on the Wild Side,” with a late-shift bartender listing off the various sexual sins and financial debacles of his customers.

“The Size I Wear” is a about a waitress who is, apparently, the size he wears, presumably in the throes of sexual intercourse. “I Like the Girls Who Drink Beer” is self-explanatory and hyper-hooky, making me see his point of view in the values of ladies who overimbibe on brews, while “Haven’t Had a Drink All Day” make me feel like a total jerk for not being a pot-smoking truck driver.

Finally, “Cold Beer Country” would’ve been the perfect good-time summer drinkin’ song if Keith didn’t already have one with “Red Solo Cup.”

Hope on the Rocks is no masterpiece, but it’s as fun as sitting in your garage, downing an ice-cold sixer while half-working on that old truck as the hot, half-naked cowgirl poster on the wall tips her Stetson knowingly to you.

Of course, this is nothing I have ever done personally, but, you know, the spirit is there, and it’s the spirit that matters. Pour me another one, Tobes. —Louis Fowler

Hey! Read This:
Chicken-Fried News: Cup’ of excellence
Chicken-Fried News: Feed’n y’all
Chicken-Fried News: Sir Toby   

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