Amongst a few peers of mine, it is a well-known fact that for many years, I despised the country music singer Taylor Swift.
Why? How? Doesn’t everyone love her? (Shout out to Kanye West! Just Kidding. He’s annoying too.)
I just couldn’t handle the cheesiness.
If I saw her squint her eyes and look surprised to win one more award, I would threaten to quit watching award shows.
What an incredibly lame threat.
But no one cared that I was complaining about Taylor Swift. I represented a small fraction of haters. I was in the minority. I was laughed at for even thinking that she shouldn’t be allowed to be a famous country music star (that made millions of American tweens, parents and bachelors/bachelorettes sing Shake It Off).
Most of all though, I was a b*tch for thinking that she didn’t deserve to be happy. Shame, shame!
I admit, anyone who complains about an entertainer should look a little closer in the mirror and ask themselves, “what is this distaste really about?”
It wasn’t just Taylor Swift, it was the new country genre. I had disagreements with country music for two reasons:
1. Life is Slow.
“And I go back to watchin summer fade to fall, growin up to fast and I do recall, wishin time would stop right in its tracks.” ~ Kenny Chesney
Country songs often talk about enjoying the slow life of drinking beer, spending time with friends, and getting our “sun daze” on. I resented these slow life anthems. My life isn’t slow at all. In fact when it gets slow, I have to immediately find five things I should be doing to remedy that slow-moving feeling. Slow feeds impatience. Slow makes you see things you don’t want to see. Slow is accepting the moment for what it is.
I do like a good sun tan though. That’s something we can agree on.
2. Life is Simple.
“It’s funny how it’s the little things in life that mean the most. Not where you live or what you drive or the price tag on your clothes. There’s no dollar sign on the peace of mind, this I’ve come to know.” ~ Zac Brown Band
I agree with this. But damn it, 30 seconds later, I start worrying about my to-do list and all the yard preening I must do in order to comply with the neighborhood “Joneses.”
This self-reflection started because a friend of mine admitted to suddenly having an interest in country music. I just couldn’t imagine this individual liking country music. My son loves it, and I found myself asking…what the hell is my problem with country music?
Why am I snubbing it?
The truth is, I miss a slow life. I miss the security of it and the bravery of not caring about who is doing what and the latest and greatest handbag. I’ve never cared about the fast life. I definitely don’t care about price tags. I just finished shopping for my antique locket over the weekend. Simple treasures.
I chose the fast life out of fear. Fear that if I didn’t keep up and try as hard as possible, I would be considered lazy and irrelevant.
So country music, I hope you will forgive me for turning my nose up. I think we have more in common than I ever dared to admit.
Bring on the great lyrics and happy melodies.
Author: Michelle Taylor
Apprentice Editor: Carlene Kurdziel /Editor: Renée Picard
Image: Markus Grossalber/Flickr