If you're one of those country fans who spends a lot of time railing about so-called "bro-country," Jake Owen thinks you're a ... well, we'll let him tell you.

"It's so annoying," the star tells Rolling Stone Country. "I get so tired of hearing these people ask, 'So what do you think of bro-country?' I don't care."

Owen has taken a turn for the more serious with recent releases, first with "What We Ain't Got" and now with "Real Life," the first single from a new album that he says will be a career-defining collection. But he's also been known for some lighthearted fare like "Beachin'," and the singer says he doesn't have much use for the debate about what labels apply to certain styles of songs. He cites a recent festival gig as a melting pot of classic and modern country, pointing out that the fans responded well to all of it.

"People are there for the experience and for the music, and they're there for the way it feels to relate to a song that you just like. There's not much more thought to it than that, and if you try to put more thought into it than that, you're a d---," he asserts. "I get so tired of people who try to put everything into a box."

Owen argues that there's plenty of room for everybody, regardless of style. "On the same radio station you can hear 'What We Ain't Got,' which was a slow, broke-down country song, or Jamey Johnson's 'In Color' or Kacey Musgraves, it's the same station that will play Sam Hunt's songs that sound more pop-oriented," the singer says. "I love Sam Hunt’s stuff, I think it's awesome, but I also love Sturgill Simpson, and I'm comfortable saying that."

Owen will hit another festival stage next month when he arrives at WE Fest in Minnesota. The event — which runs Aug. 6-8 — is a melting pot of country sounds, including headlining sets from Rascal Flatts, Miranda Lambert, Owen and Hank Williams Jr.

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