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Tennessee mayor on Jason Aldean’s music video: ‘Seek a more positive message’

Jason Aldean performed in Texas during the ACM Awards in May 2023. (Christopher Polk/Penske Media/Getty Images)

COLUMBIA, Tennessee (WSMV) — The mayor of Columbia, Tennessee, is speaking out after Jason Aldean’s latest music video was pulled by Country Music Television for “controversial imagery and messages.”

Mayor Chaz Molder said that while he respects Aldean’s freedom of his own lyrics and those who support him, he hopes the next video that uses downtown Columbia as a backdrop will “seek a more positive message.”

Molder suggested other country music artists, including Dolly Parton, will record a video in their small town and “they can highlight peace, love and all things that are great about Columbia, Tennessee.”

Maury County Mayor Sheila K. Butt also had something to say regarding Aldean’s song: “One of the things I have learned over the years in public life is that, ‘Anyone can say anything about you, that doesn’t make it true.’ It is ironic that the left is calling this song violent when rap songs over the years have glorified rape, murder, drug dealers, robbery and other violent crimes. The hypocrisy is astounding! I am going to let Jason Aldean speak for himself!”

The song, “Try That in a Small Town,” which was released in May, is about protests and riots in large cities, with Aldean saying that behavior wouldn’t fly in small towns.

“Cuss out a cop, spit in his face / Stomp on the flag and light it up / Yeah, ya think you’re tough / Well, try that in a small town / See how far ya make it down the road,” the country star sings.

Aldean also references being armed with a gun from his grandfather and ready to use it.

“You cross that line, it won’t take long / For you to find out, I recommend you don’t / Try that in a small town,” he sings.

The music video is stocked with news footage from recent years, showing protests in big cities, American flags being burned, and attacks on police officers.

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