Controversy sells, and no one knows that like country singer Jason Aldean. The country singer’s latest single, “Try That In A Small Town,” earned him a new career milestone, becoming Aldean’s first No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart.
— billboard (@billboard) July 31, 2023
The news of the accolade left people online torn. “I’m not even an Aldean fan, but I bought the song to support the message and to cancel, cancel culture,” wrote one.
I’m not even a Aldean fan but I bought the song to to support the message and to cancel cancel culture.
— Jay (@GodsSonAtEarth) July 31, 2023
Another wrote, “I think I’m gonna vomit.”
I think I’m gonna vomit
— Steph ⁷ | FESTA ¹⁰ (@30InSeattle) July 31, 2023
After the song was initially released in May, many listeners considered the lyrics racially insensitive, including musicians Jason Isbell and Sheryl Crow. Others took it as far as to call it a pro-lynching anthem. In a statement, Aldean denied that was the intent behind the record.
“[Try That In A Small Town], for me, refers to the feeling of a community that I had growing up, where we took care of our neighbors, regardless of differences of background or belief. Because they were our neighbors, and that was above any differences,” wrote Aldean. “My political views have never been something I’ve hidden from, and I know that a lot of us in this Country don’t agree on how we get back to a sense of normalcy where we go at least a day without a headline that keeps us up at night. But the desire for it to that’s what this song is about.”
Aldean’s chart placement marks the first time three country songs occupy the spots, as Morgan Wallen’s “Last Night” retains the No. 2 slot and Luke Combs’ cover of Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Cover” holds the No. 3 spot.