Jon Pardi Shares His Thoughts on the ’90s Country Revival’

by Clayton Edwards

In recent years, we’ve seen a resurgence in traditional country music. We’ve seen 90s hitmakers like Brooks & Dunn, Craig Morgan, and Clint Black coming back into the limelight. Additionally, many newer artists like Jon Pardi, Joshua Hedley, and Luke Combs are turning to 90s country for inspiration. His recent album Mr. Saturday Night sounds like it could have dropped in 1996. The fact that the lead single from that album, “Last Night Lonely” hit the top of the charts says something about the resurgence of traditional-leaning country music.

In a recent interview with Holler Country, Jon Pardi shared his thoughts about the current state of country music and the resurgence of the 90s sound.

Pardi said, “The 90s country revival is great, because it just showcases how good country music was back then, and I think that’ll never disappear. ‘Chattahoochee’ all day!”

Jon Pardi on the Current State of Country Music

Holler wanted to know, “Is traditional country coming back – or did it ever really leave?”

“I think it’s coming back in a way where it’s not all based around the big charts, You’ve got guys like Zach Bryan, Tyler Childers, Brent Cobb, and Cody Jinks that are selling lots of tickets across the US,” John Pardi said. “I love Nikki Lane too, she’s a really cool artist that’s always been really good at combining classing country and rock and roll. There are a lot of traditional-leaning artists that mainstream listeners might not know about.”

Jon Pardi hit the nail on the head, there. Recently, we’ve witnessed the power of both Tyler Childers and Zach Bryan. Childers sat the internet ablaze last week with a cryptic post that led to the release of a new single and music video. At of the time of writing, that music video is about ten hours old and has over 100k views. Bryan’s label debut American Heartbreak broke streaming records.

Jon Pardi feels a kinship with other artists who are performing traditional-leaning country. “Whether you’re on the radio, in the charts, or just touring around doing more of an indie country thing, we’re all working together to build a wider audience for this traditional style of country music,” he said.

Pardi on Mainstream Traditionalists

John Pardi took a moment to shout out a few traditional artists who get mainstream exposure. Specifically, Pardi shouted out Midland and Justin Moore. He added, “In the long run, you will always get the likes of Morgan Wallen, who has a little bit of a traditional side to him, but it’s all packaged up in Post Malone production.”

Jon Pardi, the artists he mentioned, and countless others are doing a lot to bring traditional-sounding country back into the mainstream. Who knows, we’ll see more artists looking to the 90s and beyond for inspiration in the near future.