Mudcat Café message #4020879 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #166661   Message #4020879
Posted By: Gibb Sahib
22-Nov-19 - 11:02 PM
Thread Name: PBS - Ken Burns Country Music
Subject: RE: PBS - Ken Burns Country Music
Jerome Clark,

"Actually, the notion that country was once better (and more "authentic") than it is now is hardly confined to liberal listeners."
I agree 100%. And yet, different audiences have different reasons for asserting things of the past are better.

"I don't know what the correspondent above is talking about."
I am talking about what I was talking about: An observation of a certain audience, which I believe is well represented among those who identify with Folk genre and who don't really identify with Country -- though they'll say they like some Country item -- VS. those people who strongly identify with Country in all its rage and variety. The observation, once again, is of a listener type that I've often encountered that tends to valorize Country-labelled artists before a certain time (perhaps along with a few exceptions in the later time). Among these valorized artists, Hank Williams Senior, again as I've observed, holds a special place. He seems to represent values that are more congruent with their values, and serves as a representation of Country "as it was before..." it became something that is incongruent with their values. Again, I contrast that with the devoted, strongly identifying Country audiences who are more inclined to take in the entire range of Country.

"Rather than bash liberals as the root of all evil..."
Dunno who is doing that. I am a liberal. It's possible to reflect on the society of which one is a part, to self-analyze, etc. Nor do I identify as a Country fan. I do identify as an anthropologist, and I am an observer and critic of culture, warts and all.

"By the way, Hank Jr. is a talentless jerk." I certainly disagree about the talentless part, but I tend to doubt that is the main reason for the phenomenon which I've flagged. A jerk, hmm, OK -- but I don't care about that.

"your correspondent would more productively spend his time"
What's this "correspondent" business, and why addressing in the third person?

"people, who may disagree about everything else, are of one mind on this particular question."
They most certainly are not of one mind. If they appear to be of one mind in this conversation, then that substantiates my "theory" about the Folk audience. Since obviously a ton of people do like Junior, I suppose you dismiss their opinion? You choose to ignore the people who equally embrace Senior and Junior? I don't follow that logic of dismissing people. Indeed, my original point was this: Junior is an important part of Country music history whether you personally like him or not, and therefore must be part of any comprehensive and accurate/representative historical telling of the genre. People -- as I allege, especially people who are rather distant from the center of Country's audience -- may complain that they had to be subjected to Junior when they watched a film, but that doesn't justify leaving Junior's important impact out of the Country story.