In 2013, Tyler Farr broke through the country music scene with “Redneck Crazy”– released as the third single from his debut album of the same name.
It peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs while No. 3 on Billboard Country Airplay. It also reached No. 29 on Billboard Hot 100. The song achieved the same chart success in Canada, peaking at No. 7 on the Canada Country chart while only No. 57 on the Canadian Hot 100 chart.
However, Farr’s “Redneck Crazy” received mixed reviews from different music critics due to its overall message. Some claim it promotes violence towards women.
“I’m gonna aim my headlights into your bedroom windows, throw empty beer cans at both of your shadows,” Farr sings in the song. “I didn’t come here to start a fight, but I’m up for anything tonight. You know you broke the wrong heart, baby, and drove me redneck crazy.”
The Washington Post noted that people loved the song but also called it “disturbing,” “ominous,” and “creepy,” and said it offered a “step-by-step guide to stalking.” Even country superstar Martina McBride said the song depicted a “bully who is exhibiting a stalking-type behavior.” The “Concrete Angel” singer specifically added, “I can’t imagine any of us would want our sons acting this way.”
It Was Intended To Be Fun
Written by Josh Kear, Mark Irwin, and Chris Tompkins, “Redneck Crazy” is a heartbreak song that tells the tale of a man who went after his girlfriend after seeing her with another man.
Tompkins said that their main intention was to make the song fun and edgy. It does not tolerate what experts refer to as stalker-like behavior.
“Part of me thinks the listener would kind of like for the guy to do that like it makes them feel special,” Tompkins said. “Maybe I’m wrong. (The scenario in the song) feels kind of harmless to me. I don’t know that the song shows what’s going on in my mind, but the way that I feel is he just shows up and does this thing (and leaves). We were going for something fun and tongue-in-cheek, but it sounds dark.”
Tyler Farr has also once admitted that he thought the song wasn’t for him the first time he heard its title, but the lady who pitched her “Redneck Crazy” urged him to listen to the song’s deeper meaning, to which Farr agreed.
Farr – who was then fresh from a bad break up – quickly shared the experience of the song’s central theme and found the song to be “haunting and edgy. I never heard a song put that way,” he said. “I know people have felt this way; they just never said it.”
He also compared “Redneck Crazy” to Carrie Underwood’s “Before He Cheats,” only that it’s coming from a man’s perspective.
“You know, we’ve heard Carrie Underwood’s song about keyin’ the guy’s truck and stuff, but never a guy singin’ about, you know, the opposite end of the spectrum, which is the fact that guys go through the same thing, and they get mad, too,” Farr said. “This song definitely does that for guys and also crosses over even into the girls’ redneck crazy universe over there and preaches it for the ladies, too.”
Despite the backlash “Redneck Crazy” went through, listeners loved the song and even responded by sharing their own such experiences. You can listen to it in the video below.