Editor’s note: This is an example of Blog Post 5.
Before I started Rhetoric of Country music, the only experience I had with country music was me actively seeking it through listening to it either on the radio or during a show. After going some of the assignments, I realized that country music is all around us!
To start, I went to the Texas Music Museum. Unfortunately, when I went the country music exhibit was not in display at this moment, but I did learn about Tejano music in Texas. I wish the country music display would have been available though, because I’m sure there would have been lists of the different artists and their backgrounds. I then went and had lunch at Threadgills on a typical Friday afternoon, and although it wasn’t brunch it was still great walking around the restaurant and seeing the pictures of the different artists (there was a section with a lot of Willie Nelson pictures there) and the southern vibe that the whole restaurant had.
Since those experiences kind of failed, I made sure I had other experiences and encounters with country music. Some of the ones I had throughout the semester are:
I remember going to see Cars in theatres when I was young. The only thing I ever remember from the movie was the long scene when Lightning McQueen is driving and “Life is a Highway” was playing in the background. I decided to rewatch the movie, and I realized that there were country songs in the movie. I think at the time when I was little, I was taken back by the story line more than the actual music, even though I did love Rascal Flatt’s version of “Life is a Highway”. I think country music being involved in mainstream movies like this is good for the genre because it gives people the opportunity to listen to the songs without really realizing it’s country and judging it solely for it being country and quickly turn it off. And for kids, songs like “Find Yourself” and “Life is a Highway” are catchy tunes to introduce them to the genre and hopefully grow up to really like it!
Reading Texas Music Magazine
I read February 2015’s edition of Texas Music Extra. I had never heard of this magazine, let alone read it, but I did enjoy it. Even though it was informative, the information was clear and easy to read. I enjoyed that they had a good blend of well known artists like Miranda Lambert and Willie Nelson, but then they also mentioned local artists like Kasey Lansdale. Even though the magazine discussed different genres of Texas music, there was some about different country artists.
I also decided to pay a little visit to the bronze version of Willie Nelson. I also may or may not have attempted to face swap with Willie and got in trouble with the APD… I think it makes sense that Austin decided to rename it’s street to Willie Nelson Boulevard considering he has made a huge contribution to the city and has lived in Austin for a long time. I think the statue is in the perfect location because it sits outside of the Moody Theatre (which some people like to say he ‘christened’ the theatre because he performed on opening day) where ACL Live tends to tape!
After all of these different experiences, I noticed that country music is around us. It’s either in movies we watch, in our streets, at the restaurants we eat, or even aspiring or established artists among us, country music is there and makes a presence in every day life!