By Molly Hayden, U.S. Army Garrison Grafenwoehr Public Affairs July 9, 2013
VILSECK, Germany -- There was a rare moment in Bavaria a few weeks ago when the weather dipped high into the 90s. It was the kind of weather that makes you want to throw on a pair of daisy dukes and scream an Alan Jackson song because it was, in fact, "hotter than a hoochie coochie."
So it seemed almost perfect that it happened to be country karaoke night at The Zone sports bar on Rose Barracks.
Numerous Soldiers and family members packed into the bar, here, June 21, to find their inner twang and sip on some liquid courage before taking to the mic.
And while the bar hosts an array of themed karaoke nights on Friday nights, there was something different about country night.
Arguably, country music is one of those genres you either love or hate, and when you love it -- you love it. And Spc. Michael Scriver, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, the only person at the bar sporting a cowboy hat and boots, loves it.
"Country music is all about what people go through," said Scriver, who refused to sing karaoke himself, but sat just outside the perimeter of the octagon stage lip-syncing to every song that played, accentuating his solitary performance with some impressive air guitar moves. "It's my anthem."
For many, like Scriver and fellow unit Soldier Spc. Neil Lockman, country music hits a chord.
"It's honest. It cuts home, deep, and tells a story that everyone can understand," said Lockman.
Lockman often listens to country music on his daily commute, belting out each song to punctuate the story, but admits singing in front of a bar full of people is decidedly more difficult.
"I've only done it once, and I sang a song that mattered," he said.
The song -- Toby Keith's "American Soldier."
"That song tells our story," said Lockman, looking around the room full of Soldiers.
For family member Shanna Rames, however, country music carries the perfect pitch that is easily adapted by her voice. Simply put, she likes singing it.
And when she took to the stage crooning "She's in the love with the boy" by Trisha Yearwood, the crowd found out why. She nailed it -- word for word, pitch for pitch.
"It's my kind of music," said Rames.
Rames' friend, family member Marie Crites, accompanied her that night for moral support, and had her own ideas of why country music is so popular.
"It's about the good, the bad and the ugly," said Crites. "You want a good break up song, a song that makes you happy, a song that tells your story; it's all in country music."
And while most of the audience came for the music that night, Jeff Carson, a recreation specialist for Outdoor Recreation, not to be confused with the famed country singer of the same name, had a very different agenda: "I'm here for the girls in tight jeans and cowboy boots."
The Zone Sports Bar holds themed night karaoke twice a month. Join in on the fun July 19 and Sept. 13 for hip hop; Aug. 16 and Sept. 27 for old school music; and Aug. 29 for Latin night.
Country karaoke will be back in the fall, so there is plenty of time to shine your boots in preparation.