Ryan Miller, Getty Images via tasteofcountry.com
Charley Pride is a country legend with 36 Number One hits, 30 Gold albums, and 4 Platinum albums, not to mention a Country Music Hall of Fame member.
He clearly knows a thing or two about good music, which is why he and fellow country icon Crystal Gayle signed on as the spokespeople for a new 10-disc collection of songs called Country Music of Your Time.
The collection is presented by Time Life, who tells consumers to “bask in country’s golden age with the ultimate collection of sweet country ballads, nostalgic love songs, and melancholy tales of heartache.“
Although Country Music of Your Time features mostly vintage country music, Pride makes it known that they, in no way, favor old school country over new school.
“I don’t go around kicking what country music is going through today because Carrie Underwood and all those people have had so many great hits,” he tells Rolling Stone. “When they started bringing in people they referred to as the ‘hat gang’ — I guess it would be Garth (Brooks) and Alan Jackson — I didn’t go around saying, ‘We were better than them!’ or ‘It was better then!’ And Taylor Swift has had so much success from the vantage point of money. I mean, who’s going to kick $53 million a year?”
No matter what type of country music someone sings, whether it be pop-country, “bro-country,” or traditional country, Pride sees everyone just as performers. “We’re in the business of selling lyrics, feelings and emotions,” he continues, “we try our best to do that with the songs we sing.“
Pride also acknowledges that he understands that country music is always changing. His father loved Bill Monroe, so he grew up listening to Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys.
He also realizes there is true talent in each progression of country music. When he first met Randy Travis, he told him, “You’re going to be big.”
The best way he can explain the progression of country music is that that Travis “knew people like Tim McGraw and Faith Hill and all the way up through Garth Brooks and Blake Shelton. That takes us to where we are now. That’s the way I see it, as to how country music has progressed.”
Take a listen to Pride’s most famous song, “Kiss An Angel Good Morning” Below.
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