Sheryl Crow Bashes Jason Aldean’s “Try That In A Small Town” Amid Controversy

(Left) Farm Aid / YouTube / (Right) Jason Aldean / YouTube

Sheryl Crow Speaks Out Against Jason Aldean’s “Try That In A Small Town” After CMT Pulls Its Music Video

Jason Aldean released his latest single, “Try That in a Small Town,” in May. In it, Aldean takes a stand for gun rights and rebukes acts of violence toward police. He sings, “Try that in a small town. See how far ya make it down the road...”

The song generated some criticism in the immediate aftermath of its release. But that criticism increased following the release of the song’s official music video on July 14.


Aldean’s video for “Try That in a Small Town” shows him performing outside of the Maury County Courthouse in Columbia, Tennessee. Viewers criticized the choice of location, since the Courthouse is where several incidents of racially motivated violence occurred in the past, particularly the lynching of 18-year-old Henry Choate in 1927.

The video also includes footage of lootings and protests against police officers.

Those criticizing the song and its music video accused Aldean of being “pro-lynching” and supporting racial violence. The backlash led to CMT choosing to remove the video from its rotation on Monday (July 17).


Jason Responds To The Backlash After CMT Yanks His Music Video Out Of Rotation

Aldean released a statement addressing the controversy on Tuesday (July 18). He said:

In the past 24 hours I have been accused of releasing a pro-lynching song (a song that has been out since May) and was subject to the comparison that I (direct quote) was not too pleased with the nationwide BLM protests. These references are not only meritless, but dangerous. There is not a single lyric in the song that references race or points to it- and there isn’t a single video clip that isn’t real news footage -and while I can try and respect others to have their own interpretation of a song with music- this one goes too far.”

He explained what the song means to him personally:

Try That In A Small Town, for me, refers to the feeling of a community that I had growing up, where we took care of our neighbors, regardless of differences of background or belief. Because they were our neighbors, and that was above any differences. My political views have never been something I’ve hidden from, and I know that a lot of us in this Country don’t agree on how we get back to a sense of normalcy where we go at least a day without a headline that keeps us up at night. But the desire for it to- that’s what this song is about.”

Jason Aldean shares statement on controversy around "Try That in a Small Town"
Jason Aldean / Twitter

Sheryl Crow Slams Jason Aldean & “Try That In A Small Town” – Says “It’s Just Lame”

Sheryl Crow is one of the many people who spoke out against Aldean and “Try That in a Small Town.” She bashed him and the song in a post on Twitter after he issued his statement:

.@Jason_Aldean I’m from a small town. Even people in small towns are sick of violence,” she said. “There’s nothing small-town or American about promoting violence. You should know that better than anyone having survived a mass shooting. This is not American or small town-like. It’s just lame.”

Despite the criticism he’s received, Aldean also has his fair share of supporters. Travis Tritt expressed his “love” for Aldean’s new song, and told Aldean “say what you want to say.

Aldean’s fans also threw their support behind him in the midst of the controversy. “Try That in a Small Town” claimed the #1 spot on the all-genre iTunes chart hours after Aldean issued his statement about the backlash.

"Try That in a Small Town" at #1 on iTunes


On Wednesday night (July 19) Aldean’s performance of “Try That In a Small Town” from this year’s CMA Fest aired during a televised event on ABC. Though a video of his performance has not been uploaded online as of this writing.

Watch Aldean’s official music video for “Try That in a Small Town” below.