God and Country Music: The Musical Stylings of the Film Mud

Earlier this month, my wife and I got the chance to see Mud, a film by one of my favorite directors, Jeff Nichols. Mud is a Huckleberry Finn-like narrative set on the banks of the Mississippi in small town Arkansas. Told through the lens of fourteen-year-old Ellis (Tye Sheridan), who, along with his buddy ‘Neckbone’, finds a boat in a tree on an island in the middle of the Mississippi. Living in that boat is a man named Mud (Matthew McConaughey) with crosses in his boots to ward off evil spirits … [Read more...]

God and Country Music: The Anatomy of a Country Song

Each week in God and Country Music, Nick Rynerson gives country music a chance and examines the world of Americana, folk, alt-country, and popular country music.  Country music is all about formula. It fits a mold that makes it stand out from any other genre. It’s got a certain sound that represents a certain group of people in a certain place. Ever since mountain people got their hands on a banjo and Roy Acuff had a twang in his voice it’s been like that. Structure makes a country song “good” or … [Read more...]