It’s never been a secret that the key to a successful pop hit is to be both familiar to listeners, yet somehow new. But on country radio over the past couple years, the “somehow new” part of it has been getting downplayed a bit. That’s the takeaway from this incredible YouTube clip that shows an assembly of six different top-five hits on the country charts from 2012-2014, mashed up via ProTools: They’re all basically the same exact song.
Those six hits all fit firmly in the “Bro-country” side of the aisle: Blake Shelton, Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Chase Rice, Parmalee, and Cole Swindell, an assortment of fellas in their late-20’s to late-30’s mostly from North Carolina and Georgia who do things like wear backwards baseball caps and sing about trucks–to pretty much the same melody, with pretty much the same chord progressions, in songs that are pretty much indistinguishable.
The idea that various hits are built on the same building blocks isn’t new–you can find evidence of how Pachelbel’s “Canon” runs through decades worth of songs–but there’s definitely something to be said for the fact that all six of the songs in the mashup video here were top-five hits on the country chart in a pretty condensed time span. At the very least, they make for one of the most listenable mashups in an awfully long time.