The Good News: Bad Economy = Great Music

In times of economic stress, great new styles and movements emerge in American popular music. Below is a chart I’ve put together to illustrate my point. Interestingly, frivolous pop excess gets swept away as well when we get serious about the artists we want to listen to in tough times.

Below is The Reformed Broker’s Bad Economy = Great Music

Era 1930’smid to late 1970’slate 1970’s to early 1980’s early 1990’s2001 -2003
Economic ProblemThe Great DepressionStagflationHyper-Inflation, RecessionS&L Crisis, RecessionTech Bubble Burst, Enron, 9/11
New Musical MovementDelta BluesPunkHip HopGrungeGarage
Artists We GotRobert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Memphis Slim, Leadbelly, Son HouseThe Ramones, The Clash, The Sex PistolsKool Herc, Grandmaster Flash, Afrika Bambaataa, Sugarhill GangNirvana, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Temple of the Dog, Alice in ChainsThe Hives, White Stripes, The Vines, The Strokes
Nail in the Coffin ForJazz OrchestraCorporate RockDiscoHair MetalBoy Bands
Say Goodbye ToAl Jolson, Jelly Roll Morton, Cole PorterForeigner, Styx, Boston, KansasKC and the Sunshine Band, The Bee Gees, The TrammpsCinderella, Def Leppard, Warrant, Skid Row, WhitesnakeN’ Sync, Backstreet Boys, 98 Degrees, O Town

So the lesson here is that yes, everything economically sucks right now, from jobs to taxpayer abuse to stocks to real estate.  That said, every negative data point brings us closer to the death of a Backstreet Boys and closer to the emergence of a Kurt Cobain.

So chin up and keep the ipod playlist current, we’ll get through this!

What's been said:

Discussions found on the web
  1. ian in hamburg commented on Mar 05

    Good way to illustrate the fact there hasn’t been any new musical genre worth listening to since punk. 🙂

  2. ian in hamburg commented on Mar 05

    Good way to illustrate the fact there hasn’t been any new musical genre worth listening to since punk. 🙂

  3. ian in hamburg commented on Mar 05

    Good way to illustrate the fact there hasn’t been any new musical genre worth listening to since punk. 🙂

  4. Dinosaur Trader commented on Mar 05

    This is amazing. I’ve always wondered how “MMMBop” by Hanson became an international sensation… but I guess 1997 was a pretty good year economically.

    -DT

  5. Dinosaur Trader commented on Mar 05

    This is amazing. I’ve always wondered how “MMMBop” by Hanson became an international sensation… but I guess 1997 was a pretty good year economically.

    -DT

  6. Dinosaur Trader commented on Mar 05

    This is amazing. I’ve always wondered how “MMMBop” by Hanson became an international sensation… but I guess 1997 was a pretty good year economically.

    -DT

  7. Joshua M Brown commented on Mar 05

    thanks guys,
    the question is, what comes next?

    my bet is on a big World Music boom… like M.I.A., Santogold and the Slumdog Millionaire Soundtrack…

  8. Joshua M Brown commented on Mar 05

    thanks guys,
    the question is, what comes next?

    my bet is on a big World Music boom… like M.I.A., Santogold and the Slumdog Millionaire Soundtrack…

  9. Joshua M Brown commented on Mar 05

    thanks guys,
    the question is, what comes next?

    my bet is on a big World Music boom… like M.I.A., Santogold and the Slumdog Millionaire Soundtrack…