OFFSTAGE: Luke Bryan Cites Beastie Boys as an Influence

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

You cannot put country in a nice, neat little box anymore. There is genre-blending and crossing-over happening everywhere, whether you like it or not. Luke Bryan knows that, and he thinks he knows why.

“I think there’s been somewhat of a change with our generation. You know, nobody grew up more countrier than me, but I mean, I had Beastie Boys playing on little boom boxes and Run D.M.C. and all forms of music, so through the years, I just think it’s all constantly blending together,” Bryan told the Huffington Post.

(Ironic that he’d bring up that ’80s band when it was Hoobastank that made it into the lyrics of Bryan’s “Country Man” : “Your little iPod’s loaded down with Hoobastank/Don’t be a tape player hater girl were cruising to Hank.”)

Bryan goes on to say that hard-core country songs will always shine through and that he’ll always have those on his albums. And when the site asked him about Taylor Swift, he just says, “I wouldn’t necessarily say she is a country artist. I mean, obviously Taylor Swift started in country, but she morphed into somewhat of a cultural icon, so, who am I to judge what she is?”