Why do people like country music?

I don't want to derail the thread about rock music/parents, so I'll start another thread.

Over and over, people say, "I like all kinds of music...except country!" That thread contains plenty of posts like that.

But there are also comments from people like me who like country.

When I was a teenager (back in the 1970s), I was like most teenagers and HATED country music. My parents insisted on listening to people like Dottie West and Loretta Lynn and Hank Williams Sr. and the Carter Sisters, and I absolutely cringed. The "twang" drove me nuts, and the songs seemed so corny, all about Mama and lovin' that man and tears in your beer.

But then something hapened. During my summers off from college, I got summer jobs in factories. I couldn't work in offices, since I had no office skills. I didn't want to be a waitress and wait on people. Besides, factory work paid a lot more and I didn't have to dress up!

I had to be at work at 6:30 in the morning-yikes! In fact, one summer, I worked 3rd shift in a dog food factory and worked all night.

While driving to work, I would turn on the radio. And somehow, listening to rock music, especially the rock music of the late 1970s, just didn't rev me up for another day at the assembly line. I would envision all those rock musicians and their long hair (which would be hotter than blue blazes in an un-air conditioned factory) and their silly songs about peace and why the government is failing all the people and why we should reject everything--and it just all seemed so fake, so not real-life. It was Hollywood and New York and discos and nightclubs and skyscrapers, not Northern Illinois and farmland and factories.

Then while I was flipping the radio dial, I ran across a little song called, "Take This Job and Shove It," by a guy named, amazingnly, Johnny Paycheck. If you don't know it, find it on YouTube.

Now THIS was more like it! While driving to work at 5:30 in the morning, I could crank up Johnny and caterwaul out these great words that I could truly identify with! Of course I was grateful for my job and the paycheck, but it wasn't exactly fulfilling work, either! The song was fun! I knew that it was just for fun (although I realized that some factory workers with a bad boss really identified with Paycheck's song and wanted to get out of the factory.)

But Johnny's song was on the COUNTRY station. Yech!

At first I would switch as soon as he was done singing. But then I heard a few other songs on that country station.

My favorite was Ronnie Millsap. He had a number of hits out that summer. Probably the best known was "What A Difference You've Made In My Life."

This is a great upbeat song, and it fit my life at that time, when I was dating my boyfriend for the third summer in a row. I was so in love, and Millsap's song (and several of his other songs) were so uplifting. And Millsap sings and plays the piano with soul! In fact, I thought he was black at first.

When I found out he blind from birth, I was hooked. I still like Ronnie Millsap after all these years.

And there were other songs. Dolly Parton was prolific at that time, and was doing songs like "Coat of Many Colours." Now this is a song that you would never, ever hear on a rock station. It's about being poor and having a loving family.

And Kenny Rogers--I didn't really like Rogers that much, but I loved "The Gambler." It was a good story, with a great ending. Story songs were not very common on rock stations. (Gordon Lightfooot was an exception.)

In other words, the "country crossovers" got me hooked.

At first, I hated the old guard country music. But then I started listening, actually LISTENING, to these people. And I realized that it was mean-spirited of me to dislike songs just because the singers had Southern accents. That was just plain prejudice on my part, and it was wrong.

And I realized that the slide guitar, the mandolin, the banjo, the fiddle, etc. were just instruments, and there was no reason that they were "inferior" compared to the electric bass, the Hammond organ (popular back then), and the drums.

I started liking the feel of these pieces, and the flow and the easiness of the country standards. It was so much more enjoyable listening to music like this on those early morning drives to work than listening to jarring, rebellious rock music. I arrived at work (or home from work) in a much more even-tempered frame of mind.

More than anything, though, I started listening to the words to these country pieces, and realizing that these words spoke to me right where I was, in Northern Illinois working in a factory and hoping to get married to my high-school boyfriend. I lived on a farm back then with my parents, and I had to help with farm chores like hay-baling.

My life matched country more than it matched rock or classical.

And so I started liking country.

Fast forward to when my husband and I had our daughters. From the very beginning, we played all kinds of music around them, and they grew up liking country. As teenagers, both of my daughters had more country albums than rock albums in their collections. (Now they have downloads.)

I honestly think that people should give country a chance and not turn it off just because the singers "twang."

Why do YOU like country?

I used to hate country music. But then I moved to a tiny town in the middle of nowhere. I only had an AM radio in my car. I got reception for only three channels - two were country and the third was elevator music. I can’t stand to drive without background music and I couldn’t afford to put in a tape player so I started listening to the country stations. It grew on my. :smiley:

[quote="Cat, post:1, topic:247920"]
I don't want to derail the thread about rock music/parents, so I'll start another thread.

Over and over, people say, "I like all kinds of music...except country!" That thread contains plenty of posts like that.

But there are also comments from people like me who like country.

When I was a teenager (back in the 1970s), I was like most teenagers and HATED country music. My parents insisted on listening to people like Dottie West and Loretta Lynn and Hank Williams Sr. and the Carter Sisters, and I absolutely cringed. The "twang" drove me nuts, and the songs seemed so corny, all about Mama and lovin' that man and tears in your beer.

But then something hapened. During my summers off from college, I got summer jobs in factories. I couldn't work in offices, since I had no office skills. I didn't want to be a waitress and wait on people. Besides, factory work paid a lot more and I didn't have to dress up!

I had to be at work at 6:30 in the morning-yikes! In fact, one summer, I worked 3rd shift in a dog food factory and worked all night.

While driving to work, I would turn on the radio. And somehow, listening to rock music, especially the rock music of the late 1970s, just didn't rev me up for another day at the assembly line. I would envision all those rock musicians and their long hair (which would be hotter than blue blazes in an un-air conditioned factory) and their silly songs about peace and why the government is failing all the people and why we should reject everything--and it just all seemed so fake, so not real-life. It was Hollywood and New York and discos and nightclubs and skyscrapers, not Northern Illinois and farmland and factories.

Then while I was flipping the radio dial, I ran across a little song called, "Take This Job and Shove It," by a guy named, amazingnly, Johnny Paycheck. If you don't know it, find it on YouTube.

Now THIS was more like it! While driving to work at 5:30 in the morning, I could crank up Johnny and caterwaul out these great words that I could truly identify with! Of course I was grateful for my job and the paycheck, but it wasn't exactly fulfilling work, either! The song was fun! I knew that it was just for fun (although I realized that some factory workers with a bad boss really identified with Paycheck's song and wanted to get out of the factory.)

But Johnny's song was on the COUNTRY station. Yech!

At first I would switch as soon as he was done singing. But then I heard a few other songs on that country station.

My favorite was Ronnie Millsap. He had a number of hits out that summer. Probably the best known was "What A Difference You've Made In My Life."

This is a great upbeat song, and it fit my life at that time, when I was dating my boyfriend for the third summer in a row. I was so in love, and Millsap's song (and several of his other songs) were so uplifting. And Millsap sings and plays the piano with soul! In fact, I thought he was black at first.

When I found out he blind from birth, I was hooked. I still like Ronnie Millsap after all these years.

And there were other songs. Dolly Parton was prolific at that time, and was doing songs like "Coat of Many Colours." Now this is a song that you would never, ever hear on a rock station. It's about being poor and having a loving family.

And Kenny Rogers--I didn't really like Rogers that much, but I loved "The Gambler." It was a good story, with a great ending. Story songs were not very common on rock stations. (Gordon Lightfooot was an exception.)

In other words, the "country crossovers" got me hooked.

At first, I hated the old guard country music. But then I started listening, actually LISTENING, to these people. And I realized that it was mean-spirited of me to dislike songs just because the singers had Southern accents. That was just plain prejudice on my part, and it was wrong.

And I realized that the slide guitar, the mandolin, the banjo, the fiddle, etc. were just instruments, and there was no reason that they were "inferior" compared to the electric bass, the Hammond organ (popular back then), and the drums.

I started liking the feel of these pieces, and the flow and the easiness of the country standards. It was so much more enjoyable listening to music like this on those early morning drives to work than listening to jarring, rebellious rock music. I arrived at work (or home from work) in a much more even-tempered frame of mind.

More than anything, though, I started listening to the words to these country pieces, and realizing that these words spoke to me right where I was, in Northern Illinois working in a factory and hoping to get married to my high-school boyfriend. I lived on a farm back then with my parents, and I had to help with farm chores like hay-baling.

My life matched country more than it matched rock or classical.

And so I started liking country.

Fast forward to when my husband and I had our daughters. From the very beginning, we played all kinds of music around them, and they grew up liking country. As teenagers, both of my daughters had more country albums than rock albums in their collections. (Now they have downloads.)

I honestly think that people should give country a chance and not turn it off just because the singers "twang."

Why do YOU like country?

[/quote]

well i like country cause for one i live in a very hillbilly area and two actually i wasn't raised around too much country music instead mostly classic rock, but i ended up listening too stuff like alabama, hank jr, johnny cash, waylon jennings etc i cant stand most of the modern country music(and i use that term lightly)

I think a lot of the country music you are talking about is not what people mean when they say they "hate" it.

Remember that country music had a huge growth in popularity relatively recently. But not so much the classic stuff, but what might be called "pop" country. "Achey Breaky Heart" and that sort of thing.

That is what most people hate, and honestly, I think it is pretty bad. Is it worse than bad pop rock - I'm not sure - I sometimes think so, or maybe it is just that there are really popular good rock stars, but it seems in country the really good bands don't get much popular play.

I know that on the country music stations here, they play nothing I would listen to. But I really like classic stuff, and there is some great modern country, folk and bluegrass stuff. But I only seem to hear that on public radio.

I suspect many have never had much exposure to real country music. And it may be that when they do, they have become so accustomed to the fake, canned stuff that they hear it as what they expect to hear.

I like it because it has a sense of humor, is generally more lighthearted than other popular music. I can't stand the "pop" music of today, but I liked pop music of my adolescence (the 80s). Today, it seems dark, depressing. I guess to some people, country is too hokey and earnest.:shrug:

Country music also tends to celebrate the things that are important to me now, like family. There's plenty of country that I dislike, too...there's a song that's really popular right now "Something to do with your hands" which is like nails on a chalkboard for me.

In addition to popluar country, I also really enjoy some good bluegrass like Alison Krauss.

The reason I like country music... mostly the older stuff since I don't listen to music like I used to, is because country music tells a story.

Most of the pop music doesn't do that like Country does.

But really, I used to be into all music except hard rock... loved it all. Now, I enjoy it but I guess I must be getting old because I really do NOT enjoy today's pop music. I can't judge on today's country music... just don't hear it much anymore.

I like Johny Cash and some Bluegrass…I relocated to WV from NOVA and it seems that most people around here don’t listen to “country”…unless they are from Baltimore and trying too hard…

[quote="Cat, post:1, topic:247920"]
But Johnny's song was on the COUNTRY station. Yech!

At first I would switch as soon as he was done singing. But then I heard a few other songs on that country station.

[/quote]

Sounds like a slippery slope to me. ;-) Seriously, thanks for sharing.

Never been a fan of Country music, but Blue Grass, which sometimes treads the same waters can be amazing with an incredibly high degree of musicianship.

I grew up listening to country gospel and country....my parents didn't like that "devil rock music".....

Now that I'm on the down side of 50...I like instrumental music only....don't really care for music with lyrics...however...I do enjoy some good gospel and CCM

Would like it more if "country artists" would write real country songs like "Last night my mailbox was smashed", or "A trip to the dollar general", " was snowed in for a week and the National Guard had to get me" or the famous "oxycontin shuffle"...lol.

Home - Family - Country - Religion...

I LOVE Young Country :D:D

I believe the very first country song i ever heard was probably “Somebody Like You” by Keith Urban and fell instantly in love with country music.

Country music has its root in celtic music and irish music, hence it always puts me in a good mood, so perhaps thats the reason why i fell for it instantly. Also happen to like Bluegrass. Some of me fave country singers are Reba McEntyre, Keith Urban, Josh Turner and Toby Keith. Me Bluegrass fave band is Nickel Creek. I highly recommend them all.

May Our Lord Bless you all and the country music ;). Cheers

Would diffently listen to a song that explains how my neighbor gets his car in the middle of the creek..3 times or a song about the kids 30 mile commute to school or just for kicks, a song about the nudest colony down the road....:D

[quote="Anna_Gregorach, post:13, topic:247920"]
I believe the very first country song i ever heard was probably "Somebody Like You" by Keith Urban and fell instantly in love with country music.

Country music has its root in celtic music and irish music, hence it always puts me in a good mood, so perhaps thats the reason why i fell for it instantly. Also happen to like Bluegrass. Some of me fave country singers are Reba McEntyre, Keith Urban, Josh Turner and Toby Keith. Me Bluegrass fave band is Nickel Creek. I highly recommend them all.

May Our Lord Bless you all and the country music ;). Cheers

[/quote]

If you like nickel creek check out "Punch Brothers" and anything by Chris Thile (He played mandolin in both bands and sings)

I like country music because it speaks to me. That song "Songs about me" kindof says it all.

That's it...this thread has inspired me to write my own, working man's, country music. My first song is going to be "Fluoride makes me smile"...I can hear it now.

greaseman.org/sounds/carlos/west-virginia01.mp3

I probably started listening to and admiring country music because my age cohort "discovered" it in college. It had been villified for so long it finally became cool. It may have been ironic appreciation at first but who can resist the pensive and somewhat ghostly charms of Patsy Cline's "Walkin' After Midnight," especially when it's played after midnight? That song still establishes a mood immediately and gives me goosebumps every time I hear it and I've heard it plenty of times. It's an almost perfect gem of a song in a lot of respects. And a lot of her other songs are just about equally good.

I've heard it said that country music is white blues and I think that gets to the heart of the matter rather succinctly and why it's appealing to me (i.e. it's soulful and unpretentious). I really love the vintage stuff but find the top 40 stuff unlistenable.

I like outlaw country, some classic country, bluegrass, gospel and folk music. I hate modern pop country.

What I like about it is the honesty, family, God, love of home and wit. Nashville produces pop country with themes of drinking, sleeping around, hyper nationalism and other themes I don't care for. Pop country is singers who have their songs written for them. These artist are selected and promoted mostly because they are good looking.

The music genres I mention have their origins in simple folks writing homey songs and performing for their own entertainment for their family. I would really classify it all as folk music. Johnny Cash really sang like a storyteller.

[quote="exnihilo, post:19, topic:247920"]
I like outlaw country, some classic country, bluegrass, gospel and folk music. I hate modern pop country.

What I like about it is the honesty, family, God, love of home and wit. Nashville produces pop country with themes of drinking, sleeping around, hyper nationalism and other themes I don't care for. Pop country is singers who have their songs written for them. These artist are selected and promoted mostly because they are good looking.

The music genres I mention have their origins in simple folks writing homey songs and performing for their own entertainment for their family. I would really classify it all as folk music. Johnny Cash really sang like a storyteller.

[/quote]

Don't forget ole Willie Nelson.

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