Some of the most colorful, spirited and controversial figures in music history were active during the 1960′s, and most of them hailed from the United States. The 60’s was a decade of social unrest; the young adults of the baby boomer generation had entered their 20’s, and an unpopular war was raging halfway across the world. Young men and women joined together like never before, and the revolutions that followed were unlike any others mankind has ever seen, for they centered on music, art, literature and so on. Music, in particular, played a very important role in rallying the generation towards a common goal, and artists like Bob Dylan chronicled this age with skill and delicacy. Continue reading Opinion: Chroniclers of our Age »
Have you ever wondered why most people are inclined to listen to music? Just think about it…who isn’t into music? Whatever type of person you are, regardless of your origin, music will reach you. There’s just something in music that captures our imaginations and makes us feel good.
Based on recent research at McGill University in Canada, music is just like anything that has an impact to the brain, particularly on its pleasure-reward system. Studies suggest that dopamine, a neurotransmitter, is released every time people like the music they are listening to. This explains why it feels pleasurable to hear one of your favorite songs come on. Continue reading I’m on a High, on a High! »
I admit: I am not a staunch Taylor Swift fan. To be frank, I have very little respect for her music in general. Numbers, however, are numbers and Taylor Swift swept 2010 like a tornado. An article I read today stated that her album ‘Speak Now’ sold more than 4.4 million albums and her songs were spotted by SoundScan a record 1.128 million times. As if this wasn’t enough, Taylor Swift also holds the distinction of being the most sold artist ever in the digital music world. Although I personally cannot see the reason her music is so popular, the fact that there are so many people out there that are willing to spend money to listen to her music says something about her work and about the industry in general.
Taylor Swift is an integral part of what I like to call the marketplace music movement. I am sure she puts a lot of work into her music and I respect the fact that she writes her own songs; but the fact remains that from the inception of the song to its production to its deployment as albums and digital downloads, the underlying motivation for everything is profit-making. That does not go to say that her music is not well-written or well-produced. It does, however, stay within the boundaries of what music corporate executives feel will sell the most. Going by the numbers alone, I’d say that they’re spot on.
I think music, however, has the potential to do more. It is a canvas on which artists can experiment, push the envelope and excite us. And I think that part of the reason that music like Taylor Swift’s sells so much is because we as consumers demand it. It’s basic economics. My only hope is that some of the break out artists from the world of Indie music and alternative rock whet the public’s appetite for more progressive music. I wish Taylor Swift success, but deeply hope for a day where the best selling hits are of deeper substance.
Country music has been around for a long time; it began at the dawn of the 20th century and since its inception has been on an upward spiral; continuously evolving and changing for the better.
If asked why they love country music, fans and followers of the genre may give you several reasons. What we have compiled below are some of the attributes that characterize country music and that country’s fans have come to love. Continue reading 3 Things We Love About Country Music »
Country music started gaining popularity and making its mark during the start of the century. From humble roots in the United States, country has gained recognition all over the world and evolved to the point where have two basic “sub-genres” of country: classic country and mainstream country music.
The two styles differ dramatically from each other, yet share some basic similarities. The way the music is composed, the rhythm is structured and chords are used are all entirely different. So which one is better—classic country or mainstream country? Continue reading Classic Country Music vs. Mainstream Country Music »
Rusty McNeil succumbed to death due to complications of stroke on December 15, 2010. The folk-music historian was 81.
Born Joan Betty Wilmsmeier, Rusty (a name everyone tagged her with because of her red hair) and her husband Keith McNeil made news when they started touring the country on a converted school bus. Dubbed ‘Amazing Grace’, the bus became their ‘house on wheels’ for Keith and Rusty along with their children and dogs for a span of 15 years.
Continue reading Rusty McNeil, the Other Half of Famed Folk-Singing Duo Dead at 81 »
The former Dancing with the Stars pro dancer’s second album has a tentative release date of 2011. The video for the first single “Is That So Wrong” is already creating a big buzz in the music and pop world.
The video has been banned by CMT for being too steamy. Too sensual. It starts out simple enough; Julianne is walking around in appropriate daisy dukes, cowboy boots. But soon enough, her article of clothing gets a littler looser, she starts dancing a little dirtier, and soon enough she does the splits in a bra and skirt.
For someone like Julianne, given her dancing background, she obviously does not see anything wrong with the video. During a performance, Hough reportedly said “This next song—funny story, I shot a music video for it, and Country Music Television kind of banned it.”