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Country Music Broke My Brain: A Behind-the-Microphone Peek at Nashville's Famous and Fabulous Stars

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Nashville is filled with stars and lovers and writers and dreamers. Nashville is also teeming with lunatics and grifters and dip wads and moochers. Gerry House fits easily into at least half of those categories. Someone would probably have to be brain-damaged or really damn talented to try to entertain professional entertainers over a decades-long radio show in Music City, Nashville is filled with stars and lovers and writers and dreamers. Nashville is also teeming with lunatics and grifters and dip wads and moochers. Gerry House fits easily into at least half of those categories. Someone would probably have to be brain-damaged or really damn talented to try to entertain professional entertainers over a decades-long radio show in Music City, USA. Fortunately, House is little of both. Host of the nationally syndicated, top-rated morning show, “Gerry House & The Foundation” for 25 years, he has won virtually every broadcasting award there is including a place in the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame. Gerry also spent that time deep inside the songwriting and recording world in Nashville. In Country Music Broke My Brain, Gerry tells his stories from the other side of the microphone. He reveals never-aired, never-before published conversations with country music’s biggest names—Johnny Cash, Brad Paisley, and Reba McEntire to name a few—and leaves you with his own crazy antics that will either have you laughing or shaking your head in disbelief. With exclusive celebrity stories, humorous trivia and anecdotes, and broadcasting wisdom, this book is a treat for country music fans or for anyone who wants a good laugh.


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Nashville is filled with stars and lovers and writers and dreamers. Nashville is also teeming with lunatics and grifters and dip wads and moochers. Gerry House fits easily into at least half of those categories. Someone would probably have to be brain-damaged or really damn talented to try to entertain professional entertainers over a decades-long radio show in Music City, Nashville is filled with stars and lovers and writers and dreamers. Nashville is also teeming with lunatics and grifters and dip wads and moochers. Gerry House fits easily into at least half of those categories. Someone would probably have to be brain-damaged or really damn talented to try to entertain professional entertainers over a decades-long radio show in Music City, USA. Fortunately, House is little of both. Host of the nationally syndicated, top-rated morning show, “Gerry House & The Foundation” for 25 years, he has won virtually every broadcasting award there is including a place in the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame. Gerry also spent that time deep inside the songwriting and recording world in Nashville. In Country Music Broke My Brain, Gerry tells his stories from the other side of the microphone. He reveals never-aired, never-before published conversations with country music’s biggest names—Johnny Cash, Brad Paisley, and Reba McEntire to name a few—and leaves you with his own crazy antics that will either have you laughing or shaking your head in disbelief. With exclusive celebrity stories, humorous trivia and anecdotes, and broadcasting wisdom, this book is a treat for country music fans or for anyone who wants a good laugh.

30 review for Country Music Broke My Brain: A Behind-the-Microphone Peek at Nashville's Famous and Fabulous Stars

  1. 5 out of 5

    Angie

    Gerry House may be a success but he doesn't come off as a very likable guy in this memoir-esque piece. I'm sure he's a nice guy but that's lost in the pages. It's a lot of "I know (name drop here)" and "here's an anecdote about (country star here) that has no real meaning other than to prove that I know him/her." It fell flat. I'm sure he has great stories that he didn't include to respect the privacy of those stars. I fully understand why he would want to do that and I'm glad that did. The worl Gerry House may be a success but he doesn't come off as a very likable guy in this memoir-esque piece. I'm sure he's a nice guy but that's lost in the pages. It's a lot of "I know (name drop here)" and "here's an anecdote about (country star here) that has no real meaning other than to prove that I know him/her." It fell flat. I'm sure he has great stories that he didn't include to respect the privacy of those stars. I fully understand why he would want to do that and I'm glad that did. The world does not need more celebrity gossip tossed out like chum to waiting sharks. But... The issue is that he only holds those stories back for people he seems to like or those that haven't wronged him in some way. Miss a song writing session with him? Looks like you'll NEVER EVER make it in the biz, or so he claims about Jamey Johnson. You may know Jamey Johnson as the award-winning writer and performer of "In Color" (in my top ten songs of all time and that's saying a lot) or his many appearances at the Opry or his other songwriting hits or his sold out tour dates or...well, you get the idea. Johnson didn't make a scheduled song writing session (uncool, for sure) so Gerry House trashes his look - say he looks like he needs a flea dip - his personality, and his career. No worries, Gerry. That doesn't make you look small and petty at all. Nope. You're fine. House was in the country radio game for a long time and seems to have aged out. This isn't an ageism thing here, I simply mean that he seems to really love country music and its world from when he started in the business. Like many aging folks, he dislikes the "noise" and persona of many of today's hitmakers. New Nashville: Get Off His Lawn. I'll be the first to say that "BroCountry" has gotten out of hand in the past couple of years. House, however, trashes huge portions of today's artists because they wear baseball caps or sunglasses. He doesn't talk about their music, songwriting, or careers. He writes them off as useless because of backwards hats and screaming female fans. He tells a nice story about Taylor Swift being this sweet kid who deserves all her success, who sent him a nice painting as a thank you, routinely called into his show, and all these other things she didn't have to do but did anyway. He then goes on to tell the story of the one time, years later that she didn't greet him with great fanfare. What's the point in telling the second part? To try to knock her down a peg? He sat down at her table at an awards show in a chair between her and her father. She said "hey" and returned to the conversation she was already having. Why try to paint in her a bad light because of that? Was anything lost if this tidbit wasn't thrown in? I don't get it. He did this several times throughout the book then thanks the artists he's tattled on for recording his songs. Really, guy? If you want to hear stories that he thinks are funny but are actually just sad (George Jones doing coke, Tanya Tucker partying too hard) then this may be a book you'll really enjoy. I don't think private stories about people at the height of their addiction issues are entertaining. Maybe spending less time trying to prove he's somebody would make House feel more real or personable. Unfortunately, he opted for the path of "look at all my celebrity friends" while trying way too hard to be witty. 2 out of 5 for me. I received a copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley for review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Stoolfire

    This is not what I was expecting and it wasn't what I was looking for either. This is not what I was expecting and it wasn't what I was looking for either.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Barbm1020

    This book is so much fun! If you are even marginally aware of country music, even if (like me) you've never been to Nashville and listened to Gerry House on the radio, it's a good read. Funniest bit: Chapter 44, "Available Names Left" for country musicians and bands. My favorite: The Weasel Squeezers. But it's all good. I recommend it. This book is so much fun! If you are even marginally aware of country music, even if (like me) you've never been to Nashville and listened to Gerry House on the radio, it's a good read. Funniest bit: Chapter 44, "Available Names Left" for country musicians and bands. My favorite: The Weasel Squeezers. But it's all good. I recommend it.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Whitney O'Halek

    Love this book! I grew up listening to Gerry House and the House foundation every day, and even after I moved away from TN I would listen online. Gerry made me laugh so hard I cried while reading this book, and I loved all the anecdotes and stories. As I was reading, I could hear his many voices in my head, which made it all the funnier. Some seriousness and heartfelt moments were sprinkled throughout, which endeared him even more to me. Still miss you, Gerry, but I'm glad you're spending more t Love this book! I grew up listening to Gerry House and the House foundation every day, and even after I moved away from TN I would listen online. Gerry made me laugh so hard I cried while reading this book, and I loved all the anecdotes and stories. As I was reading, I could hear his many voices in my head, which made it all the funnier. Some seriousness and heartfelt moments were sprinkled throughout, which endeared him even more to me. Still miss you, Gerry, but I'm glad you're spending more time with Al!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Annika

    What saved this for me is the hilarious writing. I didn't know most of the people name dropped and the ones I did know, theywere okay. Brad Paisley is like a cat? Still didn't make that connection but sure, I don't know him. So these are just amusing little stories from a radio and songwriting and joke writing personality with decades in Nashville experience. I don't doubt, just was all okay. What saved this for me is the hilarious writing. I didn't know most of the people name dropped and the ones I did know, theywere okay. Brad Paisley is like a cat? Still didn't make that connection but sure, I don't know him. So these are just amusing little stories from a radio and songwriting and joke writing personality with decades in Nashville experience. I don't doubt, just was all okay.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Carly

    A somewhat funny inside look into the movers and shakers of country music. It did get a little National Enquirer in some parts for my taste. Overall, an entertaining look into the life of a long time country music radio host.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Paige

    I loved this book!! Gerry is hilarious and very descriptive with his writing! I love that Keith Urban is mentioned in the book 6 times! 10/10 would recommend.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Amy Beth

    I loved it. Every minute of it. But wait, I should be honest and tell you that I've been a Gerry House fan since, I don't know, forever. Also, I grew up in small town Middle Tennessee AND I work in Nashville in the music industry. So, yeah, I might be slightly biased. This book is comfortable. And by comfortable, I guess I really mean familiar. I understand completely when he talks about growing up "in the sticks" and the small town way of life. I also understand references to places and events I loved it. Every minute of it. But wait, I should be honest and tell you that I've been a Gerry House fan since, I don't know, forever. Also, I grew up in small town Middle Tennessee AND I work in Nashville in the music industry. So, yeah, I might be slightly biased. This book is comfortable. And by comfortable, I guess I really mean familiar. I understand completely when he talks about growing up "in the sticks" and the small town way of life. I also understand references to places and events like Maude's and the BMI Awards and the people in the stories. If you are a fan of country music, especially the country music of the 80s and 90s, or if you work in the Nashville music industry, I think you'll like this book. If you are a Gerry House fan, you'll love this book because he's been gone from our daily lives for so long and these stories are typical Gerry House. It's funny! The book made me miss Waylon, Minnie Pearl, and Marty Robbins especially. I will never understand that Taylor Swift story but, then again, I have no one in Taylor's camp to tell me the other side. I've only heard one side and it's presented here exactly the way I heard it. I loved (LOVED!) the Narvel Blackstock story. People in the industry should take notes after reading that one! Oh, and Marty Robbins singing a Gene Autry song (on-air live) after Gerry House said he looked like Gene Autry's limo driver? Classic! How many country stars could (or would) do that these days? No, Ranger Doug does not count. I also enjoyed hearing his travel stories. The bits about China were especially interesting to me. So, there you go. I don't think that's a good review but this book seems difficult to review. I loved it. I thought it was funny. Will you love it? Will you think it's funny? I have no idea but I think you should give it a shot.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Yaaresse

    I've never heard of Gerry House and knew nothing about him although I am familiar with just about every other name he drops in this book. When he's telling tall tales about his own life, he is very funny. (Although his father seems to have been the real comedian in the family.) When he's telling tales about other people, it started out OK, but quickly took a downward turn into The National Enquirer territory. Then we got to the part about Randy Travis, and he completely lost what little respect I've never heard of Gerry House and knew nothing about him although I am familiar with just about every other name he drops in this book. When he's telling tall tales about his own life, he is very funny. (Although his father seems to have been the real comedian in the family.) When he's telling tales about other people, it started out OK, but quickly took a downward turn into The National Enquirer territory. Then we got to the part about Randy Travis, and he completely lost what little respect I had for his storytelling judgement. I can take or leave Randy Travis, and, yes, some of the things Travis did back in 2012-2013 went deep into WTF-Land. But at the time House wrote this book, he knew damn well -- as evidenced by his postscript notes at the end of the chapter -- that Travis was in ICO, having suffered a viral infection and a massive stroke. Travis was on life support for a while and was not expected to live, much less walk, talk or sing again. The decent thing would have been for House to pull the chapter on Travis from the book. He clearly had time since he had time to write an addition to it. House chose to go for a cheap laugh. At that point, I stopped reading and deleted the book from my tablet. Any writer or comic worth their paycheck knows that was in bad taste.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kris Marasca

    Gerry House has seen it all. He tells all in Country Music Broke My Brain with great humor. The forward, written by many of his country music friends, sets the tone for the book. House goes way back in country music history; it's not just the current crop of stars that he speaks of. Whether or not you are a fan of the country music of yesterday or the newer version of country music, this is a must read. You'll learn the definition of "country & western" and also "dipshit". You'll read an amusing Gerry House has seen it all. He tells all in Country Music Broke My Brain with great humor. The forward, written by many of his country music friends, sets the tone for the book. House goes way back in country music history; it's not just the current crop of stars that he speaks of. Whether or not you are a fan of the country music of yesterday or the newer version of country music, this is a must read. You'll learn the definition of "country & western" and also "dipshit". You'll read an amusing story about Johnny Paycheck's teeth and also the definition of a "jewel case". The Judds? They're in there as are Johnny Cash and Merle Haggard. Rascal Flatts, Brad Paisley, Reba, Kenny Chesney & Taylor Swift are also mentioned

  11. 4 out of 5

    Dusty

    The author, Gerry House, is a Nashville radio personality and a successful writer of jokes and country songs. The book is harder to describe. On the one hand, it is something of a memoir and insider's guide to the music industry. On the other, it's an outlet for House's sometimes rambling thoughts on songwriting, artists he's interviewed, etc. I think the chapters could be better developed and organized, but even so, I found the book an enjoyable and educational read. I especially appreciated th The author, Gerry House, is a Nashville radio personality and a successful writer of jokes and country songs. The book is harder to describe. On the one hand, it is something of a memoir and insider's guide to the music industry. On the other, it's an outlet for House's sometimes rambling thoughts on songwriting, artists he's interviewed, etc. I think the chapters could be better developed and organized, but even so, I found the book an enjoyable and educational read. I especially appreciated the anecdotes about country stars like Johnny Paycheck, Tanya Tucker, and Taylor Swift.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rick McGee

    This book surprised me greatly. It was a fun and easy read full of good humor, sly wit, and genuine stories. The personalities of top stars and near stars, are revealed by Gerry in a straight forward way with no punches held back. The author shares his views about people, places, and things in a heartfelt manner that ropes you into his crazy way of looking at life. The reader learns why country music people have such pride in their industry and how Nashville is so resilient as the hub. Well done This book surprised me greatly. It was a fun and easy read full of good humor, sly wit, and genuine stories. The personalities of top stars and near stars, are revealed by Gerry in a straight forward way with no punches held back. The author shares his views about people, places, and things in a heartfelt manner that ropes you into his crazy way of looking at life. The reader learns why country music people have such pride in their industry and how Nashville is so resilient as the hub. Well done.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    I'm from Nashville, and listened to Gerry House for years. There are lots of funny anecdotes included about country music greats. I hate that the only really negative story was about Taylor Swift, who has helped bring a lot of new fans to the genre, and donated millions to The Country Music Hall of Fame and the Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville. Worth a read if you are a country music fan. I'm from Nashville, and listened to Gerry House for years. There are lots of funny anecdotes included about country music greats. I hate that the only really negative story was about Taylor Swift, who has helped bring a lot of new fans to the genre, and donated millions to The Country Music Hall of Fame and the Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville. Worth a read if you are a country music fan.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I devoured this book in a day and a half. It is every bit as fabulous and completely hilarious as Gerry House himself. I adored the behind-the-scenes stories about country stars of today and yesterday. I highly recommend it to anyone who has ever gotten a laugh listening to Gerry House or anyone who's simply a fan of country music. A+ I devoured this book in a day and a half. It is every bit as fabulous and completely hilarious as Gerry House himself. I adored the behind-the-scenes stories about country stars of today and yesterday. I highly recommend it to anyone who has ever gotten a laugh listening to Gerry House or anyone who's simply a fan of country music. A+

  15. 5 out of 5

    J.D.

    Wasn't aware of Gerry House going in, even though I probably saw or heard him at some point on TNN or radio growing up. Interesting mix of his life and industry anecdotes. Brought up names of performers I hadn't thought of in years, which will likely end up costing me a few nostalgia dollars on Amazon Music. Wasn't aware of Gerry House going in, even though I probably saw or heard him at some point on TNN or radio growing up. Interesting mix of his life and industry anecdotes. Brought up names of performers I hadn't thought of in years, which will likely end up costing me a few nostalgia dollars on Amazon Music.

  16. 4 out of 5

    victor harris

    A moderately funny commentary on some the major stars in Country Music over the last four decades from House, who held his own radio interview and call-in talk show. Some good one-liners but he tries to be too clever by a half and some of the attempts at humor come off flat.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Donita

    Excellent book about Nashville (the real and crazy Nashville). Loved every page. Laughed out loud while reading the book and wish it would have never ended. I quit listening to radio when Gerry House retired. So glad he wrote this book. If you are a fan if his, this read it a must.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Amber

    I really enjoyed this book. I listed to Gerry House while I lived in Nashville and some of the stories he has to tell were fabulous. I especially enjoyed hearing funny stories the stars tell about themselves. Overall, it was a really good read.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jeramy Stephens

    I really wanted to like this book. But it is a spew of name dropping and hard to follow stories. I loved listening to his radio show and still consider him one of the funniest people ever but I found this book painful to read.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie Boyd

    I loved this book & have been a fan of Gerry House for decades. Reading this was like listening to the House Foundation in the mornings - I could hear Mike Bohan giggling in the background in my head. I hope he write more. This book for sure left me wanting more.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ashley Altendorf

    Worth the read for any country music fan! I wish there had been even more ancedotes about the singers but even his stories about growing up, etc seemed to fit right in. And MAJOR props to him for finally calling Taylor Swift out for NOT being a perfect little angel.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Christy

    Reminded me how much I miss Gerry on the radio.

  23. 4 out of 5

    George Miles

    Enjoyable, but scattered. Not really a memoir, but rather a collection of anecdotes. I'm not a huge country music fan, but knew most of the names dropped. Fun read. Enjoyable, but scattered. Not really a memoir, but rather a collection of anecdotes. I'm not a huge country music fan, but knew most of the names dropped. Fun read.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Katie

  25. 4 out of 5

    Leah

  26. 4 out of 5

    Marie Merritt

  27. 4 out of 5

    Autumn

  28. 5 out of 5

    Maureen

  29. 5 out of 5

    Karen

  30. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Hall

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