Jason Aldean wondered if Dolly Parton belonged in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, then he shared his opinion on whether one of rock’s most influential bands belonged in the Country Music Hall of Fame. Should the Eagles be inducted alongside legends like Johnny Cash, Garth Brooks and (more recently) Hank Williams Jr.?
Towards the end of his visit with Taste of country nights, Aldean was asked about Parton’s inclusion in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. You may recall that she was nominated but asked voters not to vote for her, believing she was unqualified. Watch his full response and find the full interview at the bottom.
“I think Dolly Parton belongs in every Hall of Fame,” said Aldean – whose new Macon, Geogie, the album is now available in its entirety — tells ToC evenings host Evan Paul. “She’s obviously one of the biggest icons in our format, she wrote songs like ‘I Will Always Love You’ and that kind of stuff that became huge hits. I absolutely think if they want her in there and think she deserves it, I absolutely think she is.”
There is a history of country artists at Rock Hall (Cash, Linda Ronstadt, Hank Williams), but the reverse is not true. Elvis Presley is an exception, but he had considerable success on country radio early in his career. Influential southern rock bands like The Allman Brothers Group, Lynyrd Skynyrd and the Eagles are never really mentioned in the debate.
“I wouldn’t be against that,” Aldean shares. “I feel like the Eagles have been very influential to a lot of artists in our genre, me being one of them. My dad was a huge Eagles fan, growing up with songs like ‘Lyin’ Eyes’ and some of that stuff. It’s country. I don’t care what they say, it’s country music.”
“Lyin’ Eyes” is the group’s only Top 10 country radio hit. By Billboard, they have six songs on the Hot Country Songs chart, including “Seven Bridges Road”. “How Long” is their most recent album, from 2007 Long road out of Eden. This song benefited from a promotional partnership with Mercury Nashville.
Yet their influence is overwhelming. Tim McGraw, Brad Paisley and Toby Keith are just three future Country Music Hall of Famers who have given the band a shout-out in the past. Hall of Famer Vince Gill literally became an eagle after the death of Glenn Frey. Aldean is on their side.
“A lot of that (music) was really country,” he says. “I just think at the time it was probably a little heavier than what country was then, but looking back at it now, what country music is now, I think back to these songs and I’m like, ‘Man, this is traditional country music.'”
Top 50 Jason Aldean Songs: His Greatest Hits + Best Deep Cuts
Taste of Country asked readers for their input and dove into Aldeans’ extensive catalog of songs to identify which ones deserve to be on this top songs list and which ones just don’t. Spoiler alert: a few radio singles are missing and several album tracks are Top 20. Sales and chart success helped us round out the Top 50. Do you agree with #1?