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’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!

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