Wednesday, May 16, 2007


I find the comments about country music quite interesting yesterday. I sensed people jumped into defense mode about what I would say. I don't hate country music. I don't particularly like country music either. I am a tolerant person. I can listen to it. You just won't find me tuning it in by choice. Let's get to the story shall we?

When I woke up on Saturday and stumbled over to the main campsite, only K was awake at the time. I ambled up, grabbed and chair and sat down to enjoy a can of Coke. The radio was set to a country station. After a moment, I noticed what it was and said to K "Country music, eh?". He replied that he liked to listen to something easy in the morning. No problem there. K does a lot of work when we are camping and I wasn't going to rag on the music he had on. In fact, he was up first and had the right of choice. Besides, I don't mind country music. I can listen to it. Some of it is good. But most of it just isn't for me.

I sat there watching the fire as the songs came out. I noticed a constant theme in the songs. As well as the fiddle. The lyrics seemed to be quite simple. Not that music needs to be complicated. As time went on, there wasn't any song that really jumped out that I found to be very good. In fact, I would say that most of what I heard was some poorly written songs. Bad poetry set to music. I guess that is what happens when your ear isn't tuned to that type of music. I am not saying it was bad. It just wasn't the kind of music that gets me going.

I have had been told to listen to various songs over the past couple of years. Back at PJs, Kim would play a tune here and there that she thought I would like. If the lyrics could tell a good story (which I though most at camping simply didn't do) and the music was rocked up, I could get it. Hell, people, I knew all the words to David Allen Coe's "You never even call me by my name" from my teenage days, way before it made it on the jukebox. Probably could give you most of Long Haired Redneck (exact title?) as well.

I thought about the different kinds of music I had listened to over the years. Growing up, it was whatever was playing on my dad's 8 track player in the car. It could be anything from 50s music (American Graffiti soundtrack was big), the 60s (Simon and Garfunkel), the 70s (Wings), disco (Donna Summers), all kinds of stuff. In the 80s, I listened to a lot of pop music. Top 40 music was the thing and I listened to a lot of it. Yes, I own Duran Duran albums. Along with Huey Lewis and the News, Mr. Mister, the Human League, and of course, Michael Jackson's Thriller.

It wasn't until college that I fine tuned my musical tastes to what I mainly listen to today. During my freshman year, I got into Motley Crue. That would lead to the rest of the 80 metal scene. Bon Jovi, Ratt, Quiet Riot. I had already owned Night Ranger before then so it was a natural transition. The people I would hang out with- still good friends today- would take me along that road. Among them were Cheap Trick fans, Kiss fans, Rainbow fans, and Iron Maiden.

I was a slave to that hard rock scene throughout the 90s as well. I detested grunge music because it was the beast that slayed the music scene I so loved. Still think Cobain and Nirvana are the most overrated songwriter and group of all time. Hell, the 90s was a music wasteland. I don't' believe much good came out of it. Just my opinion.

But it would be that decade, the 90s, that would teach me to not be snob about music. I learned music tolerance. I got by the nonsense of "If it isn't rock, it isn't shit!" and opened my ears to different sounds. I flirted for a while with classical music, building a small collection. Listened to some of the blues collection a friend had accumulated. I learned to give all kinds of music a chance. Not only did it broaden my horizons but I made new friends by doing so.

Over the past couple of years, I find myself sticking to the sounds I learned to love in the 80s. I have listened to more thrash in the past couple of years. The sounds of a band like Slayer are much different (I recall rejecting the music back then because of the devil lyrics. Now I enjoy the music itself more than the words). Newer bands like In Flames can be heard loudly in my car. Even older bands that most people have never heard of like Helloween are enjoyed.

Unlike the impression that most people have of me, I can listen to just about any kind of music. Just about. Rap, hip hop, techno, dance, whatever you care to tag it just doesn't do anything for me. Others can enjoy it all day and night. It just isn't for me. But I do give some of it a listen now and then. Whether it be at a bar or whatever a friend has playing, it makes no sense to ignore it. I just might find something I like.

I was hoping more people would have left comments about what they listen to. I was interested in seeing what else was out there. Thank you to those who did.

Time to fire up Pandora and get to work. Rock on with your bad selfs!

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