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’s||mid to late 1970’s||late 1970’s to early 1980’s||early 1990’s||2001 -2003|
|Economic Problem||The Great Depression||Stagflation||Hyper-Inflation, Recession||S&L Crisis, Recession||Tech Bubble Burst, Enron, 9/11|
|New Musical Movement||Delta Blues||Punk||Hip Hop||Grunge||Garage|
|Artists We Got||Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Memphis Slim, Leadbelly, Son House||The Ramones, The Clash, The Sex Pistols||Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash, Afrika Bambaataa, Sugarhill Gang||Nirvana, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Temple of the Dog, Alice in Chains||The Hives, White Stripes, The Vines, The Strokes|
|Nail in the Coffin For||Jazz Orchestra||Corporate Rock||Disco||Hair Metal||Boy Bands|
|Say Goodbye To||Al Jolson, Jelly Roll Morton, Cole Porter||Foreigner, Styx, Boston, Kansas||KC and the Sunshine Band, The Bee Gees, The Trammps||Cinderella, Def Leppard, Warrant, Skid Row, Whitesnake||N’ 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!