No, Luke Bryan Didn’t Ask CMT to Pull His Videos in Support of Jason Aldean
On Tuesday (July 18), CMT removed Aldean's "Try That in a Small Town" music video from circulation. The network didn't specify why they made the decision to do so, but it seems likely that it was linked to the controversy surrounding the song and video, which have both been criticized as racist dogwhistling and a glorification of gun-based vigilante justice. Portions of the music video were filmed in front of Columbia, Tenn.'s Maury County courthouse, where, in 1927, a mob hung the body of a Black man named Henry Choate after lynching and murdering him.
The rumors about Bryan's involvement stem from a story shared on satire site Uplifting Today, which includes small print saying that its contents include "new satire and parody" and should be considered "satire, parody, surrealism and humor."
Though the story advertises itself as parody -- not news -- some readers didn't get that far into the fine print, and shared the headline as real news on social media.
"Good for Luke Bryan! [CMT] is darn sTupid because the majority of country music fans are Patriots who loves [sic] this country and can definitively relate to Jason Aldean's 'Try That in a Small Town,'" one Twitter user wrote.
"Love when Patriots stick together !!!" another added.
The fake Luke Bryan story follows another similar story about Blake Shelton, who was said to have withdrawn from a $30 million project with CMT in order to stand in solidarity with Aldean. That story, originating from a website called the Dunning-Kruger Times, is also false.
Speaking of the Dunning-Kruger Times, they also published a story saying that Hank Williams, Jr. resigned from his seat on CMT's Board of Directors in protest of the network's decision to pull Aldean's music video. You guessed it -- that report is fake, too. In fact, everything published at the Dunning-Kroger times should be viewed as satire: The "About Us" section of their website states that "Everything on this website is fiction. It is not a lie and it is not fake news because it is not real. If you believe that it is real, you should have your head examined."
Bryan hasn't pulled down any of his videos from CMT; however, Nashville restaurant E3 Chophouse -- which Bryan and Aldean are both investors in, along with former professional baseball player Adam LaRoche -- has decided not to play CMT in solidarity with Aldean.
"We stand with Jason! E3 supports the small town because that is who we are!" a tweet from the steakhouse reads. "We will not air CMT at any of our restaurants until a formal apology is made and Jason''s music video is reinstated."