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Music helps define culture

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1 Music helps define culture on 1/8/2017, 6:22 pm

For about two years as a kid I got into Country music. I loved Roger Miller, Johnnie Cash, Merle Haggard, Glen Cambell, and Kenny Rogers. I never was an Elvis fan. Just did not get it. However, when the English invasion came, I became a rock and roll fan and continue to be the same. I think all country music with the same lyrics and stories is not as good as the sixties and frankly I turn off any station which is playing the same. On the way down I was forced to listen to some pretty bad country. I finally hit a station out of Mobile called Rocket radio which plays classic rock. With all the culture shock of folks not doing work themselves and expecting somebody else to do it. With the sports coverage on tv not covering major league baseball, football, basketball, and hockey at times it feels like I am back in Mexico watching coverage of soccer and nothing else on TV. It used to be when I was in Birmingham there was always rock and roll, and my aunt called me a hippie for listening to those stations. My cousins thought Jethro Tull and Led Z sucked and Rod steward floated their boat along with Paul and wings. It was a culture shock then, but Country was not part of the equation among the young.

The whole paradigm has switched. Young people are listening to country music. My neighborhood bar only played rock for twenty years, but the last three years it is country with somebody singing about owning a truck and would you go out with me.......Music is politics. To deny the reality that Hollywood now is only followed in urban areas, that country music now is everywhere in the nation, and that pro sports are being abandoned across rural America, and there is one obvious common denominator.

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2 Re: Music helps define culture on 1/8/2017, 6:48 pm

Funny thing is, our leaders had nothing but scorn for them after John's comment about Jesus but the kids were alright. 

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3 Re: Music helps define culture on 1/8/2017, 8:50 pm

Music does change culture and politics. Maybe country music expresses the hopeless state many in poverty experience. I mean I never could approach a women who I had an interest and tell her I own my truck. I went to my neighbor's wake and his family was playing God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy......lyrics dealing with being broke, divorce, no work, and generally pretty F'd up. He served in the military having no options because he drank his way through high school, but the military did give him some stability. He was released and got married and had a child where he quit working, and was a total alcoholic. He worked seldom and the wife divorced him, and he moved in with his mother who lives next door. He had a son who was seven years old when we first met him. He set a hell of a role model as he drank a case of beer a day, and lost his license and could not drive to work as his mother supported him and his son as the mother took off with a daughter from another man and moved to Arizona. He died of pancratic cancer, and his son is now 19, dropped out of school, is even more F'd up than his father who at least could get into the military, and like his father is living off his mother and grandmother all the while listening to country music and hunting and fishing. I have NO use for people who do not work and take care of themselves when they had opportunity. We hear from the grandmother about how this kid has had a tough break losing his father, and both my wife and I lost our fathers at 10 and that did not make us lazy or feel sorry for ourselves. It seems like this culture is reinforced by this music which is depressing and superficial. Rock was uplifting and optimistic. Country has become depressing and limiting on the human spirit. So I am not surprised it is taking over rural America where rock once ruled. It is a sad commentary, but people just do not play the cards they were dealt and feel sorry for themselves making excuses and having music which glorifies that loser culture.

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4 Re: Music helps define culture on 1/9/2017, 4:41 am

Interesting social commentary, and seems to have some merit; I'm not a sociologist so guess I can't really comment on all that.

I, too, liked Country for a while in my younger years, but now can't stand it simply because it all sounds alike to me, and  -- agreed -- almost all sounds so very whine-y.

On the other hand, thanks to influence from my husband I do now like a lot of Bluegrass, which I used to look down my nose at.  Fave group is the Gibson Brothers.  Great music, eminently listenable, minimal "twang."    Smile

That said, the eclectic blend of 60's and later Folk I play and sing as a retirement hobby is still my greatest personal comfort and joy, musically speaking.

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5 Re: Music helps define culture on 1/9/2017, 6:01 am

Country or pop, it doesn't get any better than this.

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6 Re: Music helps define culture on 1/12/2017, 11:43 am


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