Sunday, February 24, 2013


There has been a lot of buzz about Jason Aldean's new single "1994" which got me to thinking about the year itself.  Although this new song is the one of the worst ever written in history, 1994 as a year was a great one for myself and in music.

1994 was the year I graduated from high school and started college.  As the year kicked off towards graduation, my life was full of new experiences.  I was going to school, working, hanging out with friends, and listening to some awesome music on the radio.  The 90's may have had flaws in music, but nothing like these days where singers only know how to sing about trucks, beer, and girls.  The year kicked off in grand fashion with a soon-to-be superstar.  Faith Hill's debut "Wild One" hit #1 the first week of January. 5 months later she would hit the top again with "Piece Of My Heart."  Right about the time I graduated, her future husband, Tim McGraw, was at the pinnacle of the charts with "Don't Take The Girl."  My favorite song in the first quarter of the year, however, was "I Just Wanted You To Know" by Mark Chesnutt.  It remains one of my favorites by him.
1994 was all about saying goodbye to everything we knew as teenagers and embarking on new adventures.  Not before an awesome Senior trip to Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, however.  A few days later, graduation took place on a sultry, hot Sunday afternoon.  I had 42 in my graduating class.  Living now in a city of considerable size for the geographic region, I miss those small town days.

As the Summer began, I remember enjoying the weather, being 17, and attending as many concerts as time would allow.  There was some awesome music that was coming out of Nashville in those days (now the majority of amazing music only comes out of Austin).  June 1994 brought one of Pam Tillis' best songs, "Spilled Perfume."  It peaked at #5 that month and is one of my all time favorites by the songstress.  It's a classic in my book and it appears on her "Sweetheart's Dance" album.

Rapper Aldean doesn't mention this next song in his ode to 1994, but the year held one of the biggest and most influential songs in modern country music.  "Independence Day" put Martina McBride on the map and created quite the controversy in its subject matter.  It was released in April and peaked at #12 later in the year.  Of all the songs of '94, this is my favorite.  It became an anthem for females everywhere and empowered women to seek help against domestic abuse.
As the Summer faded into Autumn, it was time to start college.  A bit frightening at the beginning for me, I did have some high school classmates join me in some of the courses, making my load a bit lighter and not as scary.  Once I got acquainted to the two campuses I took classes at, I realized college was more fun than high school.  It offered freedom, less structured classes, and various student ages which made for interesting learning.

With the Fall colors changing, as was the soundtrack to 1994.  Brooks and Dunn hit #1 in October with "She's Not The Cheatin' Kind" and Joe Diffie appeared several times with his lame songs about pickups and planets.  Perhaps this is why Jason Aldean's song is full of Joe Diffie cliches, but there were more memorable songs.  Mr. Mullet himself closed out the year with "Pickup Man."  It may have been a big hit, but little did we know it would spin off several truck songs almost 20 years later.

1994 closed out in November turning the big 18.  I remember being so excited to be able to vote in the Presidential election.  However, I had to wait almost 2 years to vote in the next election.  As I remember, though, I did vote for local and State representatives.  

I'm not sure that Rapper Aldean remembers much of 1994, except for Joe Diffie, as it is the only subject in the song.  However, I remember 1994 being full of firsts, as well as more fantastic music from some of my favorite artists, including George Strait, Clay Walker, and Pam Tillis.

Here's to 1994 and all of the fantastic opportunities it offered for my graduating class!