January 30, 2016
Admittedly, I began my journey into music with the mantra "All popular music sucks." Rock music was my thing, and my spine cringed when someone made me listen to anything else. Why do I say this? Because I have come to discover that in reality, whoever grasps onto one genre and calls everything else "garbage," in fact, "sucks." Music is diverse, with a wide range of emotions, stories, and sounds. To label an entire genre as, "garbage," is one of the least "hipster," things a music lover could ever do, their pursuit of being "different," turns into a close-minded wall. For example, take Taylor Swift, I used to immediately turn my ears when I heard her music because I thought it was the epitome of industry-centered teenage girl music with no real meaning or depth. This video immediately stuck my foot in my mouth.
There you have it, yes she is a pop star singing pop music, but look at the depth and the intricacies of what went into this song. She very deliberately writes her music with open-ended questions, she redefines herself as well as the template for successful pop songs. Rather than what I thought when I first heard her, that she just writes a few beats and talks about breakups, she really does write her songs very creatively and deliberately to make a statement.
Taylor Swift and pop music are one thing, but what about all the other genres of music in the world? "According to the engineer and “data alchemist” Glenn McDonald, there are now 1,264 genres of popular music." Even IF we stick to the main genres like rock, pop, alternative, hip hop, country, classical, jazz ect..., that is a LOT of music you forego when you dismiss a whole genre because you "don't like it." Musicians are artists, they put countless hours into making something personal, elegant, and meaningful. Many of them forego their careers to pursue what they love. They all deserve a chance before they disappear from the radar because they are in a genre you don't prefer.
In an attempt to not sound hypocritical when I write this, here is a list of 10 genres with one song each that I love. Personally I absolutely love alternative rock, but that does not keep me from enjoying and learning from all kinds of artists.
Ten Genres-Ten Songs
- Pop-"Out of the Woods" -Taylor Swift-Live/Unplugged at Grammy Museum
- Rock-"Careful" -Paramore
- Country- "Goodbye in Her Eyes"-Zach Brown Band
- Classical-"Where is My Mind"-Maxence Cyrin
- Folk- "You Don't Know What's Going On"-Nickel Creek
- Jazz-"Whiplash"-Hank Levy (this was a GREAT movie)
- Alternative-"Blood"-The Middle East
- Hip Hop-"The End"-Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
- Metal-"Alpha Seed"-Erra
The irony of the "Music Hipster," is the fact that most of the time they are more closed off the the enormous, exciting world of music than anyone else. If anyone ever makes fun of you for liking a certain genre or certain artist, then they really don't know much about music. If you really want to be "different," then broaden your horizons and never close yourself off from amazing artists who put their heart and soul into what they love.