By Madison Springer
I live in Austin, Texas. Let me rephrase this. I live in Pretentious, Texas. Another way to say it, perhaps: I live in a city where everyone and their cool hippie parents thinks they have better taste in music than me. And let me tell you, they are probably right.
I have bad taste in music. This isn’t a secret. I listened to “Call Me Maybe” so many times that I grew tired of it and moved on to remixes of “Call Me Maybe”, which I love. My go-to jam is Beyonce’s “Love on Top” followed closely by Miley Cyrus’s “Party in the USA.” My favorite band of the moment is Hanson. Yes, that Hanson. They are catchy and adorable, and I am unashamed.
Additionally, I’m ridiculously late on trends. I liked Mumford & Sons WAY after they were cool. I got into the band fun. after hearing “We Are Young” blasted from a party bus on 6th Street during a spring break mission trip. I still find Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know” very unique and refreshing. I literally just started listening to the Beastie Boys. Indeed, as a sixth grader, I once ran into the living room and told my mom that I had discovered a great new band called ELO. (Note: ELO was founded in 1970.They are awesome). My latest newly discovered love is Phil Collins.
All this to say, while I can not pretend to be a cool Austin indie music lover, I do have a thesis concerning pop music, and get ready for this big reveal: it’s fun. Pop music is fun. While “Party in the USA” will probably not stir up your creative soul the way that practically any Mumford song will, I challenge you to try to hype yourself up for a long day of work by listening to “Dust Bowl Dance.” Not gonna happen. Try throwing on a little Regina Spektor while you get ready for a date. Nope. God gave us Justin Timberlake and Beyonce for a purpose and that purpose is background music for when you are attempting a smokey eye. There’s a place for fun, catchy music, and we need to stop being afraid of it. Sure, I’ll throw on The Lumineers when I’m trying to impress my cool friends, but I’d rather be dorky car-dancing to “You Make My Dreams Come True” by Hall and Oates any day of the week.
I’d also like to address the so-called “overplayed” effect. A lot of times, people will love a song (ex: fun.’s “Some Nights”) until they deem it “overplayed.” To this I say, we must all get over ourselves. The feeling that should accompany a song or band you like getting popular is joy! Now all your friends can enjoy the same music you do! You can talk about it with them! You can go to concerts with them! You can Christmas shop and and hear it over the loudspeakers, in bars, in commercials, or in the car! Music is made to be shared and we are lucky to live in a time where music sharing is at its most ubiquitous. If I find a song that speaks to me I can send it to a friend with just a click. So I propose that we stop hoarding cool bands, it’s your job as a fan to make them famous and to get them lots of money so they can keep making good music. I also propose that we stop being ashamed of popular or “overplayed” music. If you enjoy a random one-man banjo band that records next to a graveyard in Holland with wooden shoes as drums and the only person that knows about them is the groundskeeper and you, you can love them just as much as I love One Direction and neither of us need to be ashamed of our preferences.
So keep telling me about cool new bands and I’ll keep reminding you that One Direction’s “Story of My Life’ s” is hauntingly beautiful and that “22” by Taylor Swift is the song of my generation.
Madison is an almost-done graduate student studying speech-language pathology. When she isn’t helping people find their voices, she’s probably watching old “ER” episodes or re-reading “Harry Potter.” What she lacks in cooking abilities, she makes up for in killer Bop-It skills. She cares a little too much about grammar and is definitely going to start exercising…tomorrow. Although she’s currently living in Austin, Texas, she hails from the Dallas suburbs and harbors a secret wish to drop everything and move to New Orleans. Madison likes to write about girl power, science, medicine, faith, and her current efforts to pass as a grown-up.[divider] [/divider]