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Five Years That Revolutionized Country Music

Mitchell Cohen, Music Aficionado, 2019

THE COUNTRY MUSIC situation in 1985 was so dire that The New York Times published an article that, if not quite an obituary, was a bleak prognosis. Robert Palmer's piece quoted country legend Tammy Wynette: "The country artists are going to have to band together and try to turn this thing around. If we don't, we're all going to be out of business." A manager complained that the labels were "so caught up in conforming to what used to sell and what radio stations will play, the new records don't have any life to them." But instead of being put to rest, country music in the second half of the decade entered one of the most vital periods, creatively and commercially, in its history.

Total word count of piece: 2889


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