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Bret Michaels sings about fried chicken!

 

BRET MICHAELS SINGS ABOUT FRIED CHICKEN!

What is the world of hard rock and metal coming to? First we have Vince Neil doing the chicken dance, and now we have Bret Michaels singing songs about chicken. Fried chicken at that!

What’s this all about?

It seems that Bret, in his never-ending pursuit to cross over into country music, has been working with a country band of upstarts from Jackson, Tennessee called Forty5 South. Bret appears on their album and is directing the band’s video for their song called "We’re Country So We Can." Apparently, Bret not only appears in the band’s video, but he sings a few bars of the chorus, complete with lyrics about 4-wheelin’, NASCAR, trailers, green tomatoes and, yes, fried chicken.

Here’s an article that appeared today in the News & Observer, a newspaper in North Carolina.

Hair-metal guy can survive
Looking for a country breakthrough, Poison frontman directs young band’s video

By MATT EHLERS, Staff Writer

The song lyrics provided one story line, of cowboy boots and beer, fried chicken, NASCAR and collard greens. It’s why the kids kept driving the ATVs through the mud and the crew tried to coax the horses into behaving for the cameras.

But it was the not-so-obvious themes that really spun the day toward interesting — the young country band hoping to rustle up attention for its music career; the singer’s uncle spending $400,000 trying to make that happen; and the leader of a late-’80s hard-rock hit machine, looking to reinvent himself as a country star.

If those sound like stories out of Nashville or Hollywood, they are, for the most part. It’s just that the latest chapter, The One Where They Filmed The Video, took place this week on a Chatham County farm.


Bret down on the farm telling people what to do
(Photo by Lisa Lauck)

Bret Michaels, the singer who led Poison to the top of the hair-metal universe, took charge of the activity. Michaels goes way back with Christie Cook, whose family owns the property. And Cook, along with her husband, James, runs Media One Studios, a company that specializes in videography work.

So when Michaels needed a place to shoot a video for country music up-and-comers Forty5 South, he ended up in this spot about nine miles west of Pittsboro.


Bret singing about chicken at Forty5 South’s video shoot
(Photo by Lisa Lauck)

The scenery fit the words for a song called "We’re Country So We Can."

Most days, the focus of the Clark place is on prize Arabian horses. On Wednesday, Michaels directed a Chapel Hill-based film crew and the band through a series of scenes — of the band lip-syncing in the horse ring, of them lip-syncing in front of a truck filled with hay bales and pretty ladies and Thor, the redbone coonhound.

Made up of five guys in their 20s, Forty5 South hails from Jackson, Tenn. Their first album, "Too Much, Too Fast," made a dent on Texas radio and sold about 10,000 copies, said the band’s manager, Tim Barham. "We’re Country So We Can" is set to be the first single from a new album to be released in April.

This is their big chance.


Bret and Forty5 South

Barham hopes that Michaels’ star appeal will make a difference when the album is released, helping to persuade skeptical DJs to play the CD. Michaels produced the album, sings a few lines of "We’re Country So We Can" and appears in the video.

For Michaels, the project is another step in the effort to reposition himself as a player on the country scene. He hopes to release a country album, "Freedom of Sound," this fall.

Fried Chicken! Yum!Michaels, who once embodied the Los Angeles glam-rock lifestyle of sex and excess and took Poison to No. 1 in 1988 with "Every Rose Has Its Thorn," handles these lines from "We’re Country So We Can:"

We like Southern livin’, we like Southern lovin’

Got double-wide trailers and double-first cousins

ATVs and four-wheel drives

Green tomatoes and chicken deep-fried.

It’s a change, but Michaels isn’t worried about being accepted by Nashville and its fans. He’s been influenced by KISS and Aerosmith, but likes Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Allman Brothers Band and George Strait, too.

"The reason I don’t fear it is that I’m comfortable in my skin. I’m not trying to trick anybody," he said.


Bret barking orders on the set
(Photo by Lisa Lauck)

Forty5 SouthBarham, the uncle of Forty5 South lead singer, Ashley Bowers, has the most on the line. Unlike other bands slugging it out in the clubs hoping to grab the attention of a record label that will pay to put together an album, Forty5 South has Barham, who has fronted the entire cost so far.

He made his first money on eBay, selling antiques. He parlayed that into a series of stock-market successes, leaving him with a comfortable sum.

Then he decided to get into the music business. By the time the new record is released, he figures he’ll have spent $400,000, with as much as $50,000 going toward the video.

Now he hopes to get "We’re Country So We Can" on the radio.

"We’re praying Raleigh will play it," he said, standing out of the shot as the band whipped through another take. The single and video are set to be released in February.

Barham figures that if this record doesn’t take off, he may end up shopping the band to the major labels. If it does, he’ll never have to check eBay again, and he won’t have to wait long to find out.

(The original article can be found here.)

We’re not sure how the hard rock community will take this news, but Bret seems driven to jump-start his country career in any way he can. Bret might want to look up Ron Keel or Zakk Wylde and ask them how their forays into country and western went before he bets the farm, the tractor, the cow and the trailer (not floyd’s) on his new endeavor. But Bret singing country can’t be any worse than Tommy Lee doing rap and hip hop, so you never know.

As for Forty5 South (which sounds more like a state road in Kentucky or a sexual position than it does a a name for band), they seem to be getting quite a bit of attention all of a sudden. Perhaps those guys knew that if we found out about Bret singing their chicken song, we’d make a big deal about it and they’d get all kinds of press. Well, that’s exactly what we’re doing. They can thank us later.

If you care and want to find out more about Forty5 South, and perhaps hear their songs about bird dogs, shotgun racks, moonshine stills and whatever the hell else they sing about, be sure to check out their Web site at www.forty5south.com.

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