By: Marlee Billiter
It’s important to know it’s okay to have your own music taste and that people aren’t always going to like it. It’s you, so it shouldn’t matter to anyone but you. I agree with this concept, mostly. The one exception being pop country.
Pop country includes artists like Morgan Wallen, Cody Johnson, Luke Combs, Bailey Zimmerman… all no different than the last and each with no particular greatness. The beats are some of the most unoriginal sounds to be heard, combining monotonous strums of the same guitar chords and a southern voice. That shouldn’t be so captivating, yet for some, it’s all they listen to.
Not only is the sound underwhelming, pop country music has similar themes in about every song. These range from girls to boys, trucks to America, beer to guns… some of the most boring, surface-level topics in my opinion. Maybe it’d be better with more constructive lyricism, something more inconspicuous rather than an obvious truth. But it’s simple and easy with no genuine musical aspect to make up for it. It’s genuinely some of the worst forms of poetic writing to ever be made. Rap is a genre of music that also faces a lot of backlash for its lyricism, but not because it’s boring, people just find a majority of it inappropriate. Many people like to diss rap, but Pop country lovers can’t even begin to talk. Rap generally covers the same topics country does, but includes harder, faster, and more interesting lines. Pop country artists don’t have the skill to accomplish anything as complicated as what rappers make.
People who listen to pop country artists tend to dress in a cowhand-chic manner, thinking short shorts and cowboy boots truly meet the criteria of pop country music. It doesn’t. It’s only labeled as country because of the singers’ southern voices. The funniest part of it all is that natural singing will lower an accent, so artists who sound extremely country when singing are really faking it for the effect. Otherwise, it would just be another horrible genre of music the upcoming generation brought above ground just for us to make a few jokes at.
In hindsight, I find that pop country listeners and artists are immature because of the lack of individualism, topic importance, and repelling sound. I seriously wonder why people listen to it? Those who indulge in the genre and find it amazing are typically people who haven’t been introduced to all the music our world has to offer. They haven’t heard the potential of multi-instrumentalism. If they have and continue to listen to their pop country, it only proves their immaturity. Either that or they just really don’t have a care for music.
Not only are people immature, but this generation has let pop country take over the idea of true country music. True country or, as it should be called in order to differentiate from pop, folk/blues is actually a very immersive type of music. It includes singers like Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, and Merle Haggard. These artists have original sound with lyricism quite riveting to explore–characteristics pop country lacks. Johnny Cash would write about his mental health struggles, social issues, relationship troubles, and so much more. While it sounds much older, it’s still more enjoyable to hear. There’s nothing wrong with older music. These artists truly cared about music, and it was obvious through their craftsmanship of it. Even though it’s not one of my favorite genres, I’ve shared a few good moments listening to it. It’s definitely a better experience. It’s genuine and real.Pop country artists have never once been striking to me. I cannot wrap my head around the run-of-the-mill sounds and cringe worthy lyrics. I find it surprising that some people can, but at the same time it’s their preference–a preference I just find personally immature. Why would someone willingly listen to something as boring and unoriginal as pop country? Even when you ask pop country fans what older country artists they listen to, they lose excitement about it and claim they’ve never really listened to it much. Ugh. All music genres should be taken into account, and the fact that so much music exists, it’s simply baffling that people still only listen to pop country.