My Friday Five: Little Bit Of Sports, Little Bit Of Music

Photo: Chris White
What's up?!? Hope everyone has had a good week! It's Friday, so that means it's time for another "My Friday Five." Enjoy!

1) Chris Stapleton is the Man!

I used to be a huge fan of country music several years ago but, my, how things have changed. The genre, more specifically, the mainstream form of the genre, has gone downhill quite a bit over the years. There has been this paradigm shift in what type of songs are played on mainstream country radio and I'm not liking it at all. Couple that with this weird fascination with "bro country" that started back in 2013 and I'm out! I can recall the days when I'd listen to just about anything country. Now, I only listen to a handful of country artists and some of the oldie but goodies - Garth Brooks, etc.

Enter the 2015 CMA Awards. Now, I'll preface this by saying that I did not watch for numerous reasons, including those stated above. However, I was stoked to learn that Chris Stapleton took home three awards Wednesday night. Stapleton is one of a handful of country artists I actually listen to. He's a talented songwriter that has written numerous hits, but is also involved with producing his own material. Stapleton's latest album Traveller is the best you'll hear in 2015. No doubt. Each and every song tells a story, just like the good 'ol days of country music - and not about having a house party and getting drunk with your girl or guy sitting shotgun in your pickup truck.

I'm not an old fogie. I don't mind a bit of a new sound for country music. What I do mind, however, is the content of the song itself. Mainstream country is just not doing it for me. If there is hope for a lost genre, it's Stapleton. Social media was filled with pissed off fans when Stapleton won New Artist of the Year over apparent favorite, Sam Hunt, and others but I'm so freaking happy he did - along with his other two awards of course. To top it off, Stapleton performed with the incomparable Justin Timberlake and brought the dang house down.

Check it out!

2) Battle for the Bell

North Carolina and Duke Football meet for the 102nd time in Chapel Hill on Saturday. But this latest installment of the "Battle of the Blues" is one of the most significant in recent memory. Both teams are sitting near or atop the ACC Coastal Division - Carolina in first place at 7-1 (4-0 ACC) and Duke in third place at 6-2 (3-1 ACC) - with the winner of this game having an inside track to the Coastal Division crown and a berth in the ACC Championship game in Charlotte. In addition, it's Homecoming in Chapel Hill and the six Lady Tar Heels on the recent FIFA World Cup Champion U.S. Women's Soccer Team will be honored in front of a sold out Kenan Stadium crowd at halftime. I'll be at the game and I'm sure I'll lose my voice - and my religion - before its all said and done. GTHD!

3) Idol Farewell Begins Soon

Well, I guess you can say the American Idol farewell has begun. Profile pictures have been changed on social media and a look back promo for the farewell season was released Oct. 30. You know, I'm really going to miss Idol, after all it's been a part of my life for going on 15 years. Wow! Hard to believe I was 8 when the show first aired.

Needless to say I'm not happy with the decision to end the show and, in my opinion, The Voice should be next. I know Idol has gone downhill over the years but The Voice hasn't produced a bonafide star in its nine seasons on air. I mean, can you name any of the people who won the show? Meanwhile, Idol produced two in its first four seasons - Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood - as well as several other successful artists. I don't care what you say, but The Voice has always been a competition between the "coaches" as opposed to the contestants. I haven't watched a single episode of The Voice but all I hear is "which coach will win" and the like. The contestants win on Idol and not the judges which has always been a sticking point with me. I'll more than likely never watch an episode of The Voice for the reasons above and the fact that I can't stand the host, Carson Daly, nor the "coaches" - except for Pharrell.

It's just ridiculous to me that Idol is being let go instead of other "reality" shows - Dancing with the Stars and The Bachelor/Bachelorette to name a few. I've already decided that I will no longer watch FOX programming once Idol is over. The network has cancelled so many shows I've liked over the years and Idol is the last straw for me. Oh well, at least I still have America's Got Talent.

4) Brian Kelly

I was disturbed to learn that Brian Kelly, head football coach at Notre Dame, got into a bit of an altercation on the sideline with assistant coach, David Grimes, during the game against Temple last Saturday. According to Bleacher Report, Kelly pushed Grimes away from a referee as he was discussing a call on the field. Kelly later said that he regretted the incident happened, but these moments of Kelly losing his cool on the sideline are apparently apart of a trend. Bleacher Report's Bryan Fischer said in the article: "The concerning thing is that's always been the case, and he has lost his cool on the sidelines repeatedly. At some point, we need to realize these aren't isolated incidents, but a trend." I get that coaches are human too and do get emotional during games - but you cannot put your hands on other coaches or players. Period. 

5) The Truth About TOMS

I love this new show called Adam Ruins Everything. If you haven't seen it, you should. The show, hosted by Adam Conover, provides viewers several, factual tidbits about the week's given them. One of the latest episodes I watched was about giving. One segment of the show called out TOMS Shoes and its "buy one, give one" model. I would try to explain it in words but the video is just too good not to share.


Thanks for Reading