I really hate country music.
Now, I live in Nashville, Tennessee, so I don’t admit this fact about my distaste for the genre all that often. But now my secret is out; I hate it.
But here’s the thing: I know plenty of people who hate indie, alternative, folk, electronic, rap, hip hop, r&b, microhouse, kpop, etc.–all the music I live by. And while I can’t wrap my head around why they wouldn’t like some of the music I love, I respect their opinions, and they respect mine, for the most part.
Something I just cannot understand nor excuse is the elitist opinion on music. We all know that one guy who thinks that “real” music died after 1978, or the guy who believes that if a song’s not complete with a “dope” beat, it’s not worth anyone’s attention. Is music not a personal journey? To produce ANY type of music takes an enormous amount of work, so why would you rip on a music genre as a whole?
The Modern Ape explains that whether or not an individual likes a certain type of music depends on the amount of dopamine his or her brain produces when listening to a song. This is how we judge our like or dislike of a song within its first 30 seconds; some people will immediately skip a song that someone else will put on repeat for five days straight, simply because the responses in their brains differed from one another.
Extended exposure to a certain genre of music and those who enjoy it will create a “musical template” in the mind for that general sound. In other words, if I were to spend a lot of time listening to country music with people who greatly enjoyed country music, I theoretically should develop a deeper understanding and a greater tolerance for the genre at the very least.
I’m very cautious when I say I hate things because my opinion changes nine times out of ten. When I do venture to say that I hate something, I always add a disclaimer. So yeah, I hate country music, BUT: I might love it next year. And I love Brett Dennen. So.
Some people like indie, and that’s okay. Some people like prog, and that’s okay. Some people like thrash, and that’s okay.
Some people like to voice their opinion on the music they don’t like, and that’s okay.
But some people think that because a genre isn’t their favorite, it’s automatically trash and the people who find an escape and joy in that music are tasteless. And that is not okay.
Music is everything to so many people, so why hate on any aspect of it? Liking hip hop instead of classic rock doesn’t make someone a tool. Liking classic rock instead of jazz doesn’t make someone a druggie. Liking jazz instead of dubstep doesn’t make someone outdated, and liking dubstep instead of folk doesn’t make someone shallow. (I have literally heard people make these exact generalizations, so I’m not making up crap. This stuff happens.)
It’s perfectly okay to love the music you love. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. But at the same time, don’t you dare make someone else feel ashamed for loving the music they love. Be unapologetic in your presence and judicial in your opinions. Respect ALL music, because that’s the least it deserves.