Try That In A Small Town

Back in May, quadruple-platinum country music artist Jason Aldean released a song called Try That In A Small Town. In the song, Aldean paints a picture of the disheartening state of big cities in the United States: someone getting sucker punched on the street, an old lady getting carjacked, a liquor store being robbed at gunpoint, protesters spitting in a cop’s face, flag-burnings, and violent riots. He explains that while many of those crimes will go unpunished in the city and criminals may feel emboldened, that will never happen in a small town, the rural areas where so much of country music culture originates from.

While authorities in the city may fear lawsuits, political correctness, the mob, and the politicians who will fail to protect them, Aldean assures listeners that there are certain lines you don’t cross. The crossing of those lines is simply not tolerated in “small towns”.

Two weeks ago, Aldean released the music video for Try That In A Small Town, and unsurprisingly, many took offense at the visuals. Drew Mariani welcomed James Hirsen onto The Drew Mariani Show to discuss.

In the video, Aldean and his band perform the hit song in front of the Maury County Courthouse in Columbia, TN while a projector behind them showcases the very crimes that Aldean explains are taking place in big cities. The carjackings, robberies, and riots aren’t fictional references made up for the sake of the song. The footage projected on the wall behind his band was pulled directly from news outlets.

In spite of that, many are accusing Aldean of being a racist who is encouraging lynching because of the setting of the music video and the connection between some of the riot footage and the Black Lives Matter movement. The Maury County Courthouse is controversial because it was the site of a lynching in 1927 and the race riots of 1946. For these reasons, many have accused Aldean of inciting racial violence.

But James Hirsen had a different take. “The American public sees through these attacks. This is defamation. It’s slander. That’s not what this video is about. And they’re not just attacking the song or the video: They’re attacking the man, Jason Aldean, trying to call him a bigot.”

Hirsen explained that he’s followed Aldean for a while and he believes that the mob has been lying in wait to cancel him because of a clothing line that Aldean’s wife launched last year that made fun of the woke left.

According to statements from Aldean, this song and music video had nothing to do with race, and he believes that people are intentionally mischaracterizing his music and causing more division. In his own words, “There is not a single lyric in the song that references race or points to it. 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.”

In other words, the message of the song is a warning to those that would try to bring that violence and crime to his loved ones and neighbors. In a time of anarchy where it seems like anybody can get away with anything, Aldean makes it very clear that small-town inhabitants do not and will not tolerate the destruction of their homes, violence against their loved ones and neighbors, and the open disregard and disrespect for law enforcement.

“What [Aldean] said in his own statement is that his song is about an unspoken rule that people have in small towns that he experienced. He said, ‘We all have each other’s backs and we look out for each other.’ Now that’s a Christian sentiment: We look out for each other. We love each other,” said Hirsen.

The footage of these crimes being committed by children of God against other children of God is appalling and horrendous. It is up to us to defend each other from the criminals and deviants of society. That fact shouldn’t be controversial or cause for dissent. This attempt to tear down a message of universal love calls to mind the similar reaction the mainstream media had to Sound of Freedom, a film whose purpose was to call awareness to expose the child-sex trafficking industry.

“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but underneath are ravenous wolves. By their fruits you will know them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?

Just so, every good tree bears good fruit, and a rotten tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a rotten tree bear good fruit.” (Matthew 7:15-18)

American Christians are waking up. We are shedding the mantle of fear. We will not be stifled by the attempts to silence us, to silence the message of Jesus Christ, to silence His universal message of love and goodness. We will not submit to the cancel culture, the manipulation and lies, the self-victimization, the false prophets, and the oppression of good people. We have seen the bad fruits of the evil trees around us and we reject it with confidence and faith. God is with us and we have nothing to fear.

Tune in to The Drew Mariani Show weekdays at 2pm CT

John Hanretty serves as a Digital Media Producer for Relevant Radio®. He is a graduate of the Gupta College of Business at the University of Dallas. Besides being passionate about writing, his hobbies include drawing and digital design. You can read more of his daily articles at and on the Relevant Radio® app.