In a week where an album of hymns and gospel songs tops the Billboard Countrys Album chart, the polar opposite sits only a few notches below at Number Nine: Wheeler Walker Jr.'s debut album Redneck Shit.
The demon brainchild of comedian Ben Hoffman, Redneck Shit leaves no group unoffended, as Hoffman's outlaw-country alter-ego sings about all manners of deviance. It's twisted stuff — but also piss-your-pants funny to many fans, as its Number One debut on the Comedy Albums chart suggests.
Walker boasts that it's a wake-up call for the country music industry. "Hopefully this has Nashville shitting in their cowboy boots," he says.
For the video for the title track, the singer took his cowboy hat and hairy chest into the California mountains to strut and preen, taunt horses and mime masturbation. All the while singing about "being American by birth and Southern by the grace of God," which according to Walker "means that everything I do, I do it right."
Produced by Dave Cobb, Redneck Shit features some of Nashville's most seasoned players. As such, Hoffman (speaking out of character) thinks it deserves to be heard by fans of traditional country music — despite its undeniably obscene lyrics.
"The goal was I wanted to make a really funny record that is as good as any country album that you're going to hear this year," Hoffman says. "I know I'm not as good as Sturgill [Simpson] or Waylon [Jennings], so I'd never compare myself. But as far as the contemporary country I hear, I think this stands up."