Jason Aldean is facing significant backlash after the music video for his song “Try That In A Small Town” was released last Friday — and now the production company behind the project is defending its controversial filming location.
Critics of the 46-year-old country star have slammed the song’s lyrics, which some have seen as promoting racial prejudice and a “pro-lynching” message, but the singer has vehemently denied the claims. Critics have also criticized Aldean over the music video, much of which was filmed in a Tennessee courthouse that was the site of a 1927 lynching and a 1946 race riot.
However, music video production company TackleBox told Fox News Digital that the courthouse is a “popular filming location outside of Nashville” that has been featured in numerous music videos and movies. In addition, TackleBox noted that the five-time Grammy Award nominee “didn’t choose a location.”
“Any alternative narrative that suggests the location decision for the music video is incorrect,” TackleBox wrote in a statement to Fox News Digital.
Scenes from the music video were shot outside the Maury County Courthouse in Columbia, Tennessee, where an 18-year-old black man named Henry Chute was murdered in 1927. The courthouse was also an important location during the Columbia Race riots in 1946.
Country singer Jason Aldean angers liberal activists with anti-crime, pro-gun song about 2020 riots
News footage of looting and fires taken during the 2020 riots was also shown at the courthouse during the music video.
In its statement, TackleBox cited several music videos and movies that have been filmed at the courthouse, including most recently the 2022 Lifetime original television movie “Steppin’ into the Holiday” starring Mario Lopez and Jana Kramer.
TackleBox also noted that the location was featured in the Runway June music video for their 2019 song “We Were Rich”, the 2022 Paramount holiday film “A Nashville Country Christmas” with Tanya Tucker, and Miley Cyrus’ 2009 film “Hannah Montana: The Movie.”
On Tuesday, a spokesperson for Country Music Television (CMT) confirmed to Fox News Digital that the network has pulled the “Try It In A Small Town” music video from circulation.
A representative for the network did not provide further context for the decision.
In the video, Aldean’s lyrics are sung while news of the 2020 riots reflect his message.
“Spit in a cop’s face / Spit on the flag and light it up,” Aldean sings alongside footage of the narrated events.
Aldean’s song has skyrocketed to success despite all the controversy, sitting as iTunes’ No. 1 song at the time of publication.
on Tuesday, Aldean responded. to his song.
“In the last 24 hours I’ve been accused of releasing a pro-lynching song (a song that’s been out since May) and compared it to saying I wasn’t too happy with (direct quote) nationwide BLM protests. These references are not only baseless, but dangerous,” he told his social media followers.
“There’s not a single lyric in the song that references or alludes to race — and there’s not a single video clip that isn’t real news footage — and while I can try and respect others for their own interpretation of the song with the music — that goes a long way.”
Aldean then referenced his direct connection to mass violence, reminding his followers that he was performing during a time of horrific violence. Route 91 Harvest Music Festival In Las Vegas in 2017, where a man opened fire and killed 61 people, the lives of thousands were affected.
“As many have mentioned, I was there on Route 91 – where so many people lost their lives – and our community recently suffered another heartbreaking tragedy,” he said. Nashville school shooting Six people, including three children, were killed in March.
“Nobody, including me, wants to see sleazy headlines or families torn apart. To me, ‘Try That In A Small Town’ represents the sense of community that I grew up in, where we cared for our neighbors, regardless of background or creed. Because they were our neighbors, and that transcended any differences.”
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“Mine,” Aldean emphasized. Political views There’s never been anything I’ve hid from, and I know many of us in this country disagree about how we return to a sense of normalcy where we get at least one day without a headline that keeps us up at night. But her desire — that’s what this song is about.”
When the tune was released in May, Aldean said, “To me, this song sums up the way a lot of people feel about the world right now. It seems like bad things are happening on a daily basis, and it feels unfamiliar to a lot of us. This song sheds some light on that.”
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Fox News Digital’s Carolyn Thayer and Tracy Wright contributed to this report.