Travis Tritt was recently announced as the third judge for the USA Network’s upcoming TV singing competition Real Country. Tritt, a classic country and Southern rock devotee with nearly three decades of experience, joins Jake Owen and Shania Twain as judges in the eight-episode series’ search for country music’s next breakout act.
Anyone who follows Tritt on social media knows that the Grammy and CMA award-winning, Georgia-born country star subscribes to a very strict definition of country music. For example, his Twitter account serves as a first line of defense against modern pop-country. His inclusion as a judge alongside representatives of a more pop-friendly Nashville sound should make for an interesting dynamic.
“I’ve been influenced by so many amazing country music artists in my career, and the key to longevity is using those influences as inspiration to become something unique,” Tritt says in a press release. “I’ve never been shy about how I feel about country music, so I can’t wait to join Real Country to share my experiences and thoughts. Like I always say…if you don’t want my opinion, don’t ask me a question.”
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Theoretically, aspiring solo artists that would be in Tritt’s wheelhouse while impressing his more pop-friendly colleagues would be like Dierks Bentley–knowledgeable of American roots and popular music’s rich traditions, yet willing to exist in the same stratosphere as Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood and other mainstream country music artists.
Owen and Twain were announced as judges back in April. Twain plays multiple roles in the series, serving as an executive producer alongside former The Voice and Rising Star producer Nicolle Yaron, fellow The Voice alum Stijn Bakkers and the Shark Tank‘s Leslie Garvin.