Little Big Town’s ‘Girl Crush’, And The Close-Minded Complaints That Have Forced It Into Low Rotation

girl crush


Written by TexMex

As a Music Director for a current Country music radio station in Texas, it always baffles me when people take the time to complain about a song on the radio… even here in conservative Texas. Don’t get me wrong, you certainly have a right to complain, but I have yet to run into a valid argument for any song that is currently playing on our station. Take for example the new song by Little Big Town called “Girl Crush”. First off, if you haven’t heard it, I highly recommend you listen to the full song, yes lyrics and all, and then you will fully understand my frustration with some “music” fans.

When I first came in contact with the song, LBT’s record label sent me a hard copy to listen to. There it was in BIG letters on the front “GIRL CRUSH”… I am not going to lie, at first I thought, probably no chance this makes the air and chuckled to myself. I listened to the first couple lines and again thought to myself, “Wow!! How does LBT think this makes the air?” And then, when you are least expecting it… BAM!! They hit you with the hook. It is a jealousy song, lyrically crafted by an obvious wordsmith and something of a genius. I think LBT knew this would be the reaction of many. What they couldn’t have predicted, and neither did I, was that people would still complain about the song’s “obvious” lesbian meaning. What? Did you listen to the song all the way through? Do you not like songs about women being jealous of a mistress? This is the foundation of female country music subjects most of the time.

To my surprise, after explaining the song to more than a handful of people, every one of them responded with basically the same thing (paraphrased): “You are just promoting the gay agenda on your station and I am changing the channel and never listening to you ever again!!”

So my response after hearing this? Of course I stayed calm and courteous and told them all I hated to hear that, but understood their position. I asked if they could just change the station for a bit and come back to us?? Nope! It was never my intent after fielding several complaints to take the song off the air. However, my boss thought we should move it back to a light rotation and out of medium, which for our station means 14 less spins per week. I fought for the song to stay put, but in the end he has the absolute final say, even though he agrees with me in principle.

I can understand the conservative viewpoint. I can understand the feeling of “Oh no they didn’t!!” for the first couple lines of the song. What I don’t understand is not listening to the whole song and making a valid argument for your disapproval. I also don’t understand taking the time to call a radio station to complain, listening to my response, and still refusing to believe the song is not a “lesbian” song. This basic formula is how we communicate in America.

Country music fans, please try to have an open mind about songs you are hearing on the radio today and if you don’t like them, that’s fine, but don’t not like them for the wrong close-minded reasons.

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70 Responses to Little Big Town’s ‘Girl Crush’, And The Close-Minded Complaints That Have Forced It Into Low Rotation

  1. Very well written. People just assume things without “listening” first. It’s a sad reality today.

  2. First of all, I love LBT~~~Second, I am like some of the complainers I thought the song was about a gay relationship, but BOY WAS I WRONG WHEN SOMEONE TOLD ME WHAT THE SONG WAS REALLY ABOUT. NOT WHAT EVERYONE THOUGHT!!!! When LBT finishes with this song in the end it will probably be 1 of their biggest HITS to date. When dummys like me realize what the song is really about. I love the Song!!!Don’t be surprised where it is going~~~~~


  4. JDDean says:

    Station manager agrees with you “on principle”. Sounds like he has none.What principle allows you to disregard what’s right, out of fear of reprisal from conservatives?

    • tcindc says:

      A commercial radio station is meant to be a profit-making entity, not a force for social change. He may disagree with his listeners, but it’s not his job to try to get them to think bigger. It’s his job to entertain them, and if they’re not entertained for whatever reason, he has switch things up for them. There’s nothing disingenuous about that.

      • Vickye says:

        But the reason people don’t like the song is not for the actual content of the song… just what people are stupid enough to believe it’s about.

        • tcindc says:

          Yes, but it doesn’t really matter what the reason is. If they don’t like it, they don’t like it; if they don’t like it so much they call to complain and threaten to never listen again, then it’s worth pulling, for business reasons. The idea that a commercial radio station has some obligation to be a movement for social change is a little absurd; almost as absurd as the idea that the constitution guaranteed the Dixie Chicks the right to be in heavy rotation (since they kept complaining they were being “censored”).

        • Vickye says:

          This is everything that is wrong with country radio right now 😐

  5. Kathy B. says:

    For every one person complaining about LBT “Girl Crush” there are ten others turning on the radio hoping they hear those genius lyrics and that hauntingly beautiful voice!!

  6. Deanna says:

    Why do you have to modify your behavior because they don’t approve, why can’t they turn the volume down or switch to off if something is being played they don’t like. I certainly do that every time a certain artist is played that I don’t like – I don’t call the radio station and demand they stop playing her music. Just remember if you give in and reduce or stop the rotation that you don’t feel is right, then you represent the people who are demanding it to be removed and your ignoring those of us who want to hear and can appreciate the song and the genius writing behind it. That song is amazing and anyone who doesn’t take the time to really listen to the music and the message should have no valid voice in this decision. Let them change the station, they’ll be back when the new radio station plays something they don’t agree with. P.s. – Garth brooks – thunder rolls really suffered all the way to the bank when he was banned too. LOL.

  7. lee says:

    Stop listening to the LOUD few! Look on iTunes and tell your boss that the song is selling well with fans. I also agree if complaining worked so well bro-country would be getting fewer spins. Goodness everyone has been complaining for Years about that but “it sold”, well Girl Crush is selling so what is the excuse now?

  8. Mike says:

    This highlights a bigger problem of country music losing it’s lyrical weight. Once upon a time many songs were about stories and deep subject matters that people could relate to. More recently, those real life songs are few and far between. Listeners have grown accustomed to hearing light-weight songs about partying, drinking, and good times. Bringing depth (life) back into the equation is critical, but that means listeners will have to LISTEN again and not be pacified by non-offending, lowest common denominator testing wallpaper.

  9. Krystal says:

    I loved this song from the first time I heard it. Not once did I think it was a “lesbian” song. I have however had to explain the song to a few friends but once I did and they heard it again they understood. Keep up the good music LBT!!!

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  11. jacquieshomebiz says:

    I just listened to this song for the first time because of your well written article. The song, lyrics are really GREAT. Impressive & Ingenious song writing. I love how the lyrics, a little bit in, basically ‘flip you on your ass’ when you realize what the song is REALLY about. I hope your boss changes their mind & puts the song back in full rotation.

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  13. kncitom says:

    Great explanation, great piece.

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  20. tcindc says:

    On the surface it sounds like a straight-ahead 6/8-time country tune, with a lyric about, basically, “your cheatin’ heart.” I guess I came into the song already knowing the controversy so I didn’t get suckered in thinking it was about something else. But I don’t think that matters, because I don’t think the “is this about girl-on-girl?” fake-out was meant to be a cheap trick.

    I mean, here’s a song about a woman who has been wronged. But rather than vowing revenge on her unfaithful man or deciding she’s better off without him, she is clearly still in love him. And instead of wanting to punish “the other woman,” she wonders what her makes her desirable that she doesn’t have, and concludes, “if only I was her.” By the end of the song, she comes off as obsessed, even stalkerish. There’s a darkness to it all just below the surface. For example, the lyric about “I want to drown in her perfume” is rather chilling…since it could almost be taken literally as wanting to drown and die.

    This is great stuff. I gotta thank the people who hated it for generating the controversial so I could be made aware of it, since I’m not normally tuned to country FM.

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  22. cc333 says:

    The VERY vocal minority is just that… a MINORITY.

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  24. ChynnaBlue says:

    So… if it were a ‘lesbian song’, would you still stand up for it being taken out of medium rotation or would that have been more acceptable?

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  26. Brian says:

    Let me get this straight; people are complaining about a song title in which they believe it is about “gay” without listening to the song, or reading the lyrics? IDIOTS!!!!
    Once again, we have more Tipper Gores’ of the world pushing censorship. Completely Dumb. I love country music, this well-written song. I hope ‘Girl Crush’ goes #1 and makes little Big Town a pile of cash in concert sales.

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  30. Selia says:

    So sad, when people start getting their dander up over something before knowing the whole story. Typical. I love this song. I knew exactly what the lyrics meant, because I’m smart enough to listen to the song before I form an opinion. And yes, if you don’t get ALL the facts, or story before you you voice your opinion, I agree…you are an IDIOT!!!

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  35. Hellborn says:

    Hey TexMex, calling people “close minded” because they don’t agree with YOU and what YOU believe, guess what? Makes you the close minded one. What makes you think that you’re right and they are wrong? Why couldn’t it be that they are right and you’re wrong and the close minded one? You pretentious asshat.

    • Vickye says:

      LOL!!! Wow. He knows he’s right and you’re wrong because you’re the one interpreting the lyrics incorrectly… moron.

  36. Linda says:

    I don’t think this song promotes being gay. What about Katie Perry’s “I kissed a girl and I liked it”? What about Glee where two guys got married? What about Will and Grace? What about Ellen? What about all that $hitty rap music? What about “Blurred LInes”? What about “Two and a Half Men” that promotes drug, sex, and homosexuality? What about Sean Saves the World? What Madonna kissing Brittany Spears/Christina Aguilera WITH tongue on stage? What about Mike and Molly – Susan Sarandon was on her show as an alcoholic writer and kissed Molly and wanted to take a shower with her?

    • Vickye says:

      Um… rap music does not promote homosexuality. In fact, often the exact opposite. And Blurred Lines is promoting heterosexual rape.
      The way you’ve listed this does point to homophobia…

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  50. kaz says:

    I love LBT but I’m not keen on the song. But as a lesbian I totally had to buy the record just to stick it to the people boycotting the song. Some people are just dumb, at least listen to it properly before you boycott the bloody song

    • Vickye says:

      Ahh, see this was my stance as a bisexual woman myself. Did you feel like the titillation was exploiting a bit? Sort of felt like a deliberate marketing ploy by initially pretending this was a “lesbian” song.

  51. kaz says:

    I will admit to having spat my drink out when the song started. I didn’t really feel particularly exploited, I just rolled my eyes.
    I’m kinda hoping they sing it at MusicFest though, I’d love to see what 60000 people would do with those lyrics 🙂

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  61. Michelle says:

    You people that think this is about gay’s is absolutely absurd… because she wants to taste her lips that taste like his.. unreal, she wants to be her cause she has what she wants.. where in god’s name do you idiot’s get a lesbian relationship out of this,?????? I’ve heard everything now..

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