Country music has been stepping away from its roots for the last decade, with artists like Carrie Underwood and Taylor Swift giving country a pop twang. Though country purists haven’t necessarily complained — a lot of country songs have reached No. 1 on the charts since 2000, making country one of the most popular genres in the United States — there’s no denying that the down ’n’ dirty music is changing. But who thought Luke Bryan would be a part of that?
Bryan, who hosted the 2017 CMT Music Awards on Wednesday, has been covering some of pop star Jason Derulo’s songs on tour, and the two have been BFFs since Derulo found out. Derulo told People, “I was like ‘holy shit, Luke is covering my songs.’ We became great friends after that, and the rest is history.”
Besides performing one of Derulo’s songs, “Want to Want Me,” at the awards show, the buds bro’d down just the day before. “He threw me into the country living… huntin’ and fishin’,” said Derulo. And when asked who Bryan would want to collaborate with for CMT Crossroads, a TV show where country music stars sing with musicians from other genres, Bryan’s choice was super obvious.
So, what does this mean for Bryan’s music? Will he genuinely work on an album with Derulo? What would that music even sound like? Will it be like Kendrick Lamar randomly showing up in Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood” music video, where the two just didn’t make sense together, musically or politically? (Swift did allegedly vote for Trump, after all.) Or will it really actually work because of the friendship Bryan and Derulo have?
Who knows. Maybe this is really just a bromance to fall in love with from the outside. Or perhaps there’s some new music brewing that you’ll hear on every radio station and it’ll be the summer song of 2017. Whatever it all means, it’s definitely something exciting in the country music scene.