How to write a country song.
There are certain fundamentals to the country song, as in Country & Western (C&W). They often deal with love; the loss of, celebration of, longing for, unrequited or disappointment concurrent with; the passion and violence. But by far it is the loss of love that is the “mal amour” of the country ballad, with some notable exceptions. Love can be lost in many ways in "Country", but often it is violence or abandonment, violent because of acts of or sudden brutal death, essentially stories of domestic and matrimonial disharmony. The story of the "wronged" woman is predominantly abandonment and those of the men the act of abandoning because of numerous factors, often jailing or authoritarian conflict whilst trying to "Do the right thing". Providing for the family, protecting the innocent, extracting revenge; or defence, of oneself, the family and the object of love. It is in essence a lament of despair, but of despair passed, of progress and remembrance. They could be regarded as pleas of justification, of cries of innocence and justifiable reasoning, for the living, for continued life and possible new found love, made to the departed. Equally as often a memorial to the love lost that could never be replaced, a lament of questioning confusion. Proof of veracity of love held, longing and loss. Not always for the wife/lover/child, commonly for the maternal figure, sibling or way of life, a longing to return to happier times, a celebration of suffering. Always personal, biographical, lived and experienced the hard way, usually from childhood, resonating over the years, terminal bad luck and hardship. Almost by definition C&W classics cannot be uplifting in the usual sense, thou hopeful in their yearning and positive in their message, but only because of the beauty of grief, in all it's aspects and causes, it is managed and dealt with, reasoned and accepted, grudgingly and with difficulty, but ultimately revelled and glorified, in celebration and to do justice to the memory of those departed or left behind. Safe in the knowledge that one day, somehow, reconciliation awaits.