Blake Shelton has released "Minimum Wage" as his new single. He first performed the show on NBC's New Year's Eve special where the song was met with some controversy. With lyrics like, “Girl, lookin’ at you lookin’ at me that way / Can make a man feel rich on minimum wage,” some called the song “tone deaf” as it comes during a time of high unemployment and financial struggle for so many during the current pandemic.
But Blake doesn't agree with that assessment. He told CMT.com, "These days, there are people out there who don’t want to know the truth. They just want to hear what they want to hear, and they want to pick a fight. No matter what your intention is, no matter what the truth is, they want it to be something that they can be upset about so that they can get on social media and try to grab a headline. With ‘Minimum Wage,’ at first I thought, ‘Wow, I guess I just I’ve missed something here.’ And the more I read into this, I realized this was really not real. Whatever this backlash is is just four or five people that probably don’t know anything about country music.”
Blake added that if people continue to be so adversarial when it comes to country music then he'll leave it behind. He said, “I have to say, if we have to start thinking like this, then I guess that’ll be where I have to bow out. Because that’s one of the longest-standing traditions in country music is lyrics about love. And if you’ve got love, then that’s all that matters. There won’t be much left to play or write about on country radio if this is something that we have to think twice about. So I’m going to put out the records that resonate with me and my life and not look back. As country artists and as an industry, we have to stay focused here and know that what’s right is right. And I believe this song is a great message and I’m proud of it.”
“Minimum Wage” follows back-to-back love songs with his fiance and fellow The Voice coach, Gwen Stefani. “Nobody But You” and most recently “Happy Anywhere” both reached No. 1 on the country airplay charts, giving them consecutive No. 1 singles together and bringing Blake his 28th career chart-topper.