Throwback Community Review – Chris Young’s “Aw Naw”

Welcome to Country Perspective’s newest weekly feature, Throwback Community Review! Many of you enjoyed a previous similar feature The Past Pulse of Mainstream Country Music and it was one of the main inspirations behind this feature. It’s quite simple: each week there will at least one of these. I will present some information about the song and of course a video to listen to it. You will then take to the comments delivering your thoughts and a grade, on a scale from 1-10. Your grades will be averaged to get the community grade for the song. The comments will be open for a few days before I close them to tabulate the average. Songs from any era of country music could go show up here and I’m open to suggestions for future featuring in this space.

Last Week’s Community Grade: Josh Turner’s “Would You Go With Me”7.9

This week we take a look at…

chris-young-an

Artist: Chris Young

Song: “Aw Naw”

Released: May 13, 2013

Written by: Chris Young, Chris DeStefano and Ashley Gorley

Producer: James Stroud

Background: This was the lead single from Chris Young’s fourth album A.M. The single went on to peak at #3 on the Billboard Country Airplay chart and peaked at #45 on the Billboard Hot 100. It went on to be certified platinum.

See you in the comments with my own thoughts and grade!

 

Community Grade: 2.4

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24 thoughts on “Throwback Community Review – Chris Young’s “Aw Naw”

  1. Loud, overproduced, and bro-country. This was one of the first times that I’ve ever had to come down on Young for cutting a terrible song, and go chasing the almighty dollar. It’s a shame that this was when he started falling to the dark side because he’s so much better than this, yet he’s choosing to waste his voice on banal, tepid material like this and the bulk of the material on “Aw Naw”‘s accompanying album, A.M. “Aw Naw” is one of the worst songs I’ve ever listened to on radio, and makes me wish Young would go back to cutting stuff like on his first two albums. Grade: 2/10

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  2. This is defiantly not a good song imo. It isn’t quite bottom of the barrel, cause I like Chris Youngs vocals. Just another bro country songs 2/10 for me.

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  3. The beginning of the Chris Young sellout period. Loud, over produced and trend chasing. It’s a shame because Young still hase one of the best male voices in country music, yet he decided more to yell than actually use his pipes. Music is subpar and more arena rock than country. And this is where he chose to drop all the beautiful steel guitar. Lyrics are dumb as they are trashy.

    1 outta 10

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  4. Time has not made the heart or ears grow fonder for this one.

    It’s simply a song that was beneath Chris Young to cut just because “Neon” flopped and “I Can Take It From There” didn’t have quite the scope of success as earlier hits.

    The idea at the crux of the song shows promise: a narrator who winds up partying on a weeknight although he doesn’t actually want to. Handled better, it would make for an enjoyable song idea. But here, it resembles a shameless cash-in on the bro-country bandwagon via the overcompressed guitars, name-dropping of multiple alcohol brands, the painting on of jeans (that phrase still annoys me beyond compare, by the way), shout-outs to a DJ.

    For that matter, are you seriously telling me that the only reason he didn’t find it in himself to leave in the first place was because someone bought a shot of Patron? Really? Pavlov’s Bell must be in overdrive right now for him! @.@

    *

    So no: “Aw Naw” still exposes itself as the moment Chris Young blatantly sold-out stylistically to the Nashville songwriting machine. And the success of this song (though still not as impactful as some earlier hits) gave the green light for RCA Nashville to essentially treat him as another prop for marketing whatever cliches and platitudes they had at their disposal that Luke Bryan declined.

    I’m thinking a Decent to Strong 2 out of 10.

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  5. Chris Young has a fantastic voice, one of the best in country music, IMO. So how come does he want to waste it on bro-country trash like Aw Naw? Aw Naw isn’t one of the worst songs I’ve ever heard, but Chris is capable of so much better. If you guys want to hear a good Chris Young song, go check out Neon. Neon is a solid, well-written, great country song with fiddle and steel the whole way through, and Chris sounds phenomenal in the song.

    Grade for Aw Naw: 2/10

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  6. Looks like we have a consensus. This sucks. “Show off those jeans you painted on” is all you need to know about the lyrics. As for the music, it’s driven by a generic riff, uninspiring, loud, and obnoxious. I give it a 1 out of 10.

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  7. Not only does this song badly suck both in lyrics and production, but it’s not even catchy like some of its bro-country counterparts.

    1/10.

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  8. Chris Young? “Aw Naw”? No! No! One point for his voice. (1/10)
    Chris Young went to the “dark side” & is still there.

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  9. I see the steel guitar in the video, but do not hear it in the song… Poor lyrics, too rock-y, same as most everybody ahead of me. I give it a 2, salvaged by his vocal ability, even if it isn’t on full display here.

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  10. Well you guys pretty much covered the gist of how I feel about this terrible song. This one annoyed me really quick back when it first came out and disgusted me that Young would stoop this low. I chose this one to look at though because I feel like this song did not get the criticism it deserved for it’s irritatingly shallow lyrics. Of course this goes back to Young’s voice being able to pull the wool over people’s eyes. If you want to see something hilarious, go to the critical reception on this song’s Wikipedia page. As many of you have said it’s a shame Young has wasted his talents on crap like this song. But I guess some only care about the almighty dollar. But this song did give us one good thing: Maddie & Tae’s perfect mocking delivery of this song’s title on “Girl in a Country Song.” 2/10

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    • Wow, that Taste of Country review is utterly ridiculous!

      You’re right that this didn’t get as much criticism as it deserved. I guess we were all still focused on FGL…and Blake’s “Boys ‘Round Here” came out at the same time…and Luke Bryan was surely releasing some dumbass songs. This is when Chris Young dropped the cowboy hat, a symbolic change in direction. As I’ve said before, he will go down as one of the most wasted talents in country history, unless he pulls a Tim McGraw and gets his act together.

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  11. I’ve just listened to this for the first time that I can recall. How embarrassed should I be that I don’t hate this as much as I should? Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a good song by any means, and I doubt I’ll remember it a month from now. It’s substance-free, overproduced, and like so many of today’s mainstream hits, goes to great lengths to not challenge or ask anything of the listener in any way. But hot damn, that chorus is catchy. The lizard part of my brain likes it. If I had to listen to a bro-country song, this would probably be the one.

    4.5/10

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    • Don’t be embarrassed, always go with your gut. Admittedly I’m probably a little biased myself towards this. It’s not the worst song the format has ever seen. Sadly enough not even in the top 50 I don’t think.

      I personally am more in what the song symbolizes more so than the song itself. Young has charm sure, and that’s probably what saves this from being totally bad for me, but at the same time, you could tell this is where Young sacrificed any good will he had to chase trends.

      I do find it funny that I’ve had biases towards both of the community grade songs thus far. Oh well, part of being a human I guess.

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  12. I give this song a light 1/10.
    Up to this point, I’d really liked Chris Young. Even his weaker efforts like “I Can Take It From There” still had a certain easy-going nature to them that made them enjoyable, even if they weren’t particular gems. This song was just…ugh…a mess.
    The thing is, A.M. actually had some decent songs that could have made strong singles: “Goodbye,” “Text Me Texas,” “Forgiveness.” The album as a whole was pretty weak, but this song was the worst of the bunch (even worse than “Nothing But the Cooler Left.”

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    • I really liked I Can Take it From There. Although a bit lyrically lackluster, it was fun, it sounded country (plenty of fiddle and steel), and Chris sounds fantastic. Chris is an artist with real potential, he just needs to give up on the boring, vanilla, meh stuff and give us some great music. I’m Comin’ Over was a meh album, but it had a few highlights: the title track, Sober Saturday Night, and I Know a Guy. I Know a Guy would make a great single.

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  13. This song reminds me of Luke Bryan, but this is good enough I guess. Looking forward for some throwback review about “Lady Antebellum”!!
    Grade: 6/10

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  14. 5/10. Not his best work. Not his worst. Light years better than plenty of other singles released at the same time which elevates it by comparison. (The best description of this song I ever read came from a review that said this was like Dale Earnhardt Jr. driving a Kia. He works well with the material he’s given but has the capability for greater.)

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