Now before any of you think we have gone soft in the head, hold back and hear what we have to say. Is Keith doing the best show in Country Music?
No. He is doing a damn good show but he has done better shows when he was hungrier. Is he appealing to more and more fans? No. He has not grown beyond his core fans. That is reflected in his CD sales, downloads and concert venue size. Has he put a face on Country Music in non-traditional markets both in the US and internationally? Yes, he has. While he hasn't toured in Europe this year, he will be touring in Canada and Australia. So why does he deserve the most important award in Country Music?
He deserves the Country Music Association's Entertainer of the Year award because he appreciates Country Music and he is showing it more and more. From his performance of Marty Robbins songs at the George Strait tribute, to his turn at the 2009 Grammy awards, to his very moving tribute to Les Paul when Paul recently died, Keith Urban is the face of Country Music to the rest of society. He is constantly coming back to Nashville as a muse, as a source of musical wealth and as his home. I doubt his wife likes living there. I believe she has no choice if she wants to maintain the facade of the marriage. He, however, likes Nashville. You can tell. He likes Country Music and is using his celebrity power to shine a light on it.
He does have celebrity power and that hasn't translated to material power. He is rich, but not a big player in Nashville. He is using what he has for Country Music. You can't say that about the most popular person in Country today, Taylor Swift, who has transcended into a celebrity beyond music. I think at one time Keith wanted that, but that isn't there anymore . His current activism for the Country Music Hall of Fame is to be applauded. He will be in the Hall of Fame one day, but in his appeals for the current fund raiser you can see that he is educated about this subject. This isn't about selling himself or his marriage; this is about something he believes in. That's nice to see. We find fault with him many times and deservedly so; but on this track we can't, and that is why we sincerely hope he wins Entertainer of the Year. We just hope he will be able to appreciate the fact that the award is about him and his work, and not about how his marriage made him who he is, because he made himself who he is and we know it. The nominations will be announced on September 9th.