Posted in Blogs

On “Dress Blues” And Why We Should Praise Zac Brown

So I’m sure you’ve heard by now that the Zac Brown Band went ahead and performed “Dress Blues” on ESPN last night. For some country music purists, this was sacrilege. Many of Isbell’s fans took to Twitter bashing Zac for touching a song of such depth.

Recently, I reviewed the ZBB single “Homegrown,” and while it was melodically complex and sounded great, it was clearly one of the band’s made-for-radio cuts. “Dress Blues” would be a fantastic song for the ZBB catalogue and could possibly bring something emotional to the radio as well. Isbell’s fans had failed to see what a huge opportunity this could be for the songwriter and country music in general. Luckily, Isbell, a great musician with an equally great Twitter personality, did see it.

He is so right. Zac and friends deserve credit for picking this song over a girls and drinking song that probably could have made them more money. Heck, they’ve always deserved more credit than that. They’ve always been down-home but they’ve rarely done anything ‘bro-ish.’ My take on the whole situation is best explained by this tweet:

Thank you, Shelley, for adding the same measured thought and complexity to your tweet that you demand in your songwriting.

Singles Tuesday will come later in the day. I thought this needed to be said sooner.



I host Country Pocket on WUSB Stony Brook 90.1 FM. Content from the show will appear on

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