‘There’s a little Drunken Martina in all of us’ @DrunkenMartina, aka Martina McBride’s Twitter alter ego, reveals her(him?)self

Since March 2010, Twitter enigma and Martina McBride alter ego @DrunkenMartina has entertained country music fans across the Twitterverse with her wit and cynicism, often in conjunction with the real @MartinaMcBride’s tweets.

August 12, 2014

Martina herself follows @DrunkenMartina, and speculation has run rampant across Nashville about who is behind the account. The Highway Producer J. (@joycerizer) managed to score the first known interview with @DrunkenMartina, where nothing – and no one – was off limits.

I just uncorked a bottle of Miranda Lambert’s “Platinum” wine. What’s in your glass right now?
Miranda Lambert’s “Platinum” wine. I just stole your glass.

I have been accused — on more than one occasion — of being the person behind @DrunkenMartina, which I consider a compliment. But the world will have to take my word that I’m not, or this would just be weird. I have, however, drank with Martina in real life. Have you?
First, let’s clarify that you, Blake Shelton, Gerry House, Amy in Atlanta, Joe Galante, Kenny Loggins, and everyone else who has been accused of being Drunken Martina IS, in fact, Drunken Martina. It’s a collaborative effort and an international conspiracy. In fact, anyone who claims to definitely NOT be Drunken Martina is not to be trusted. There’s a little Drunken Martina in all of us. I have not imbibed with Martina. Thanks for rubbing it in.

Who IS Amy in Atlanta anyway? You used to only follow Martina… now you follow five random people none of whom are me.
Martina has a very active network of fans on Twitter, most of whom are no longer calling for my head. Amy in Atlanta is someone many of those people thought might be behind the parody. At some point, I decided to confuse matters as much as possible by following everyone I heard tell might be Drunken Martina. There, I just followed you. You owe me 20 bucks.

So how do we know that you aren’t Martina herself? Or maybe her husband John…?
They’re both very classy people. So classy that they probably won’t even admit to being offended by your insinuation. But I don’t mind telling you that I am offended on their behalf and will probably punch you as soon as this interview is over. Martina would never do that.

I think I first “met” Drunken Martina in a satirical blog column. What led you to Twitter?
Before the blog you’re referencing, Blake Shelton was already making some drunk Martina jokes. Gerry House might have been too. For all I know, there were drunk Martina jokes going around within Martina’s own camp. For whatever reason, people found the idea of a lady with a sweet, wholesome image actually being a violent lush irresistible. People can be strange.

There were other country parody acts starting up on Twitter about that time, like the Jake Owen and Kenny Rogers accounts. It seemed like a natural place to take it. To my knowledge, Drunken Martina was the first drunk country parody account. Others started popping up pretty quickly, but it can be a hard conceit to sustain. I don’t know that the joke generalizes very well. It’s not as inconceivable that most other singers would be drunkenly misbehaving, so it’s not as funny to pretend they are.
No need to create a Drunken Dallas Davidson account, you know? Real Dallas Davidson is bad enough.

Favorite parody Twitter account?
Whoever runs that @ChaseRiceMusic account is hilarious. I don’t know how they got the blue checkmark next to the name, but they sure do make him seem like a misogynistic bonehead. I’m surprised he hasn’t complained about it yet.

First tweet?
Probably terrible. Don’t look it up.

It’s a tough time for females in country music right now – even Taylor Swift is leaving us. Yet the format is wildly popular. How would Drunken Martina fix the bro-country epidemic of tailgates, dirt roads, and moonshine and get a little more equality for the women?
Some of the most egregious music is being made by frustrated former athletes. Some injury sidelines them and they start channeling their aggression into rural braggadocio that almost suggests date rape.

Get enough of these guys going at the same time and pretty soon the backstage area at every country festival is like a men’s locker room. As soon as the car radio comes on, the smell of Axe is like to suffocate you. I think a lot of this goes away if we castrate guys as soon as it’s clear their athletic careers are over.

OK then. That’s a solution I haven’t seen suggested yet. Have you ever tweeted and thought “woah, took that too far?”
Happened often in the beginning, and about half the time the concern was probably justified. Now that I have a better idea of where the line is – not in terms of censorship, which isn’t anything I deal with, but just in terms of what I’m comfortable joking about – it happens less.

Is any person / topic off limits?
No person, since there’s something funny about everyone if you can find it. But I do try to focus jokes on choices/behaviors/pretensions rather than who people are or things they can’t change, if that makes any sense. To me, calling someone fat or ugly or stupid isn’t much of a joke: it’s just mean. When Drunken Martina makes a joke about Justin Moore being short, half the joke is just the ridiculousness of it supposedly being Martina who’s making the comment. It’s a little more meta than just “Let’s all laugh at Justin Moore because he’s short.” So what? Lots of people are short.

The main thing is not getting lulled into using relative anonymity as license to be an asshole where it’s not warranted. Even if I’m not putting my name to my words, I try to be fair and make jokes that even the subjects of the jokes could enjoy if they had a sense of humor about themselves. Which, by the way, you can’t take for granted. Sometimes artists at a certain level spend their time surrounded by people fawning over them and don’t know how to take other kinds of reactions. Sometimes they’re pretty well insulated from what people who aren’t on their staffs or in their fan clubs are thinking. Part of my role is putting those alternative truths out there in an entertaining way so that people who agree can retweet them… and people who don’t can try to get the account shut down. All in good fun, I’m sure.

Have you been asked by artist reps to take things down or to ease up on someone? And does that just make you want to poke harder?
Nashville is a small town, so most artist reps know about my jiu-jitsu skills and are too afraid to give me any guff. Every once in a while an artist will try to poke back at me personally and I use my extensive underground connections to make sure he is immediately blacklisted. So that’s why you haven’t heard much from Jack Ingram lately.

The real Martina is hosting a weekly show on SiriusXM Y2Kountry. If Drunken Martina got her own radio show, what kind of music would she play?
It would just be an hour of me spewing racial epithets and threatening to punch people… so kind of like a radio version of Chelsea Handler’s show, except funny. Maybe I’d play a Lee Ann Womack or Chris Stapleton song once in a while if I needed to sneak off and refill my glass.

I’m referring to you as a “her.” That’s kind of an assumption on my part.
Right. Based on my ability to hold liquor, there’s a better chance I’m a 400lb man.

Can we talk hair? Because I covet Martina’s. Like, from the Eleven era and beyond. Favorite Martina album based on hairstyle alone?
Obviously, you’d want to go with something like that Way That I Am cover shot, where it looks like they just clipped something at random out of a Supercuts hair catalog. God love the ‘90s.

What’s your drink of choice?
I have one called the Dirty Martina Firebomb. It’s just straight absinthe mixed with rage.

Have you ever been to Kansas?
So far, The Wizard of Oz and Jerrod Niemann have been enough to keep me away. I’m sure it’s lovely.

What Martina song would you karaoke to best?
“In My Daughter’s Size,” “I Just Call You Wine,” or “Incontinence Day.”

The real Martina McBride (@martinamcbride) hosts a weekly show on SiriusXM Y2Kountry. It premieres Saturdays at Noon ET / 9 am PT and encores throughout the week on SiriusXM 57.

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