Country music artists are usually very cordial with one another and many of them are real-life friends, so it's not often that artists in the genre become embroiled in tabloid-filled feuds. However, when Zac Brown Band frontman Zac Brown made some less-than-positive comments about a song by his friend and fellow Georgia artist Luke Bryan, metaphorical punches were thrown.
The comment came in an interview with Vancouver country radio station 93.7 JRfm in 2013. In the interview, Brown gave his opinion about Bryan's pop-leaning single at the time, "That's My Kind of Night," and the state of country music as a whole.
"I love Luke Bryan and he's had some great songs, but this new song is the worst song I've ever heard," Brown said. "I know Luke, he's a friend. 'My Kind Of Night' is one of the worst songs I've ever heard. I see it being commercially successful, in what is called country music these days, but I also feel like that the people deserve something better than that."
Brown didn't stop there at the rebuke of his friend's song. He continued, saying that the song made him want to "throw up."
"If I hear one more tailgate in the moonlight, daisy duke song, I'm gonna throw up," said the ZBB founder. "There's songs out there on the radio right now that make me be ashamed to be even in the same format as some other artists."
While Bryan himself did not respond to Brown's comments, his friend and fellow country singer and Georgia boy Jason Aldean had some stern words to send to Brown.
"I hear some other artist are bashing my boy @lukebryan new song, sayin its the worst song they have ever heard........" wrote the superstar on social media at the time. "To those people runnin' their mouths, trust me when i tell u that nobody gives a sh*t what u think. Its a big ol hit so apparently the fans love it which is what matters. Keep doin ur thing LB!!!"
Aldean's comments escalated the matter, and soon, news of the feud was everywhere. Other artists, including Justin Moore, Will Hoge and the song's writer, Dallas Davison, even started chiming in. The spat also made its way to the 2013 CMA Awards in Nashville, where hosts Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood poked fun at the feud by singing a modified version of "Why Can't We Be Friends."
"Luke Bryan and Zac Brown, nobody cares. You both make great records and you're both millionaires," they sang in the humorous duet.
The hosts also made fun of the feud by pretending there were other feuds in country music, with Paisley saying, "That Kenny Rogers is pure evil." As Underwood and Paisley performed this bit, the two singer-songwriters hugged and Bryan even gave Brown a kiss on the cheek. And, as it turns out, Aldean was right about the fans loving the song. It landed at No. 1 on the Billboard country chart.
Other country artists who have been involved in disagreements with artists or record companies include Taylor Swift (with Kanye West and more), Tim McGraw (with Curb Records), The Chicks with Toby Keith, and Dolly Parton with Porter Wagoner. Of course, some country fans like to imagine that there was a feud between Miranda Lambert and Gwen Stefani about Blake Shelton, but there's not much evidence to back up this claim.