Have the Roots of Country Music Run Dry?


The sound of country music has made clear evolutions since the turn of the 21st century PHOTO//Chloe Spradlin

Chloe Spradlin, Staff Writer

There’s no in-between about country music- you either love it or hate it. For over 20 years, the general theme of country has been trucks, beer, loving God and the red, white and blue. The overall sound and ideas of country music have polarized the opinions of the people. Allow me to answer the following question: Is country music good music? Short answer, kind of. Let’s dig deeper.

Before 9/11, we heard country music very differently than we do today. These aren’t just the days of Dolly Parton and Johnny Cash, but The Chicks and George Strait too. When the Twin Towers fell, Americans immediately felt sorrow, which would be followed by immense patriotism. It’s understandable why we saw artists like Alan Jackson and Toby Keith respond with music for hurting Americans at this time. The lasting effect of it was unexpected, but that’s not a reason to call it bad.

This isn’t to say the genre has strayed completely away from its roots. There are still plenty of artists today that don’t talk about hyper-American girls drinking beer on the bed of a Ford F-150. Tyler Childers, Kacey Musgraves and Zac Byran are popular options. Similar, lesser-known artists like Cole Chaney, Charles Wesley Godwin and Lily-Rose also fit that mold.

A big complaint of today’s country is the repetitiveness, but isn’t that the same with every genre? Sex, love, heartbreak, money, drugs and alcohol dominate the music of every genre. Why does country get the hard end of the stick? 

Like all genres, country music has evolved, and it’s okay to admit it’s not for everyone. There are options for every listener, but if you want to hear the beer-drinkin’, God-fearin’ and tractor ridin’ song, that’s okay. I’ll listen to it with you.