Explained season 3 episode 13 looks at the roots of country music and how it has transformed over the ages. Vox’s Explained tracks its way down to the historic birth of country music to today’s TikTok music that too is in some way under the genre of country music at times. The episode is narrated by Connie Britton, who we might know from the American Horror Story and has a runtime of about 25 minutes.
– Netflix’s Explained Season 3 Episode 13 Recap contains spoilers –
Explained Season 3 Episode 13: Is Country Music Dead?
There has been an ongoing debate about the popularity of country music and whether or not, it is declining as time passes. Country music which accounts for its beautiful feature of storytelling seems to be lost in the world of modern pop and electronic. It talks about identity, family and hard times through the melody of music. There is a strong sense of history running in the veins of Country Music. But is that really so? Is it still the same? And, does it still have a market to stand tall? We see the charts saying that country music is actually the most listened to genre by the audience in the United States.
Vox’s new episode of Explained shows us how the tradition of country music goes way back. It takes us to European immigrants who brought ballads with them and the fiddle. The shaping of this genre of music also happened due to folk music of different countries where the Germans lent the Waltz, the French lent the Cotillion and the black musicians brought the blues. But, country music soon branched out to form country and western music and race records. In today’s world, we know race records rebranded as “Rythm & Blues.”
This distinction ran far and wide until the entry of Elvis Presley. A big contributor to the world of music, Elvis sang country songs but, with a beat borrowed from the rhythm and blues, mixing both the branches, thus known so far. This style was later dubbed as “Roackabilly”, which eventually became “Rock n’ Roll”. With the involvement of Johnny Cash to mix country and rock, the world got its first platinum country record ever! However, it was Garth Brooks who consummated the marriage between rock music and country music.
But, is evolution always progressive? Well, the mixing of music and evolving country music came with certain backlashes of its own. For instance, Shania Twain’s Any Man of Mine which the traditionalists hated but, a new set of the audience was all the more attracted to what country-pop had to offer.
But the musical progress couldn’t overlook the real-life issues, such as the patriarchal approach to keep female musicians out of the industry by say, not giving them even to perform through a radio format. In fact, Keith Hill said around 2015: “If you want to make ratings in Country radio, take females out.[….] they’re just not the lettuce in our salad. The tomatoes of our salad are the females.” Which is what gave rise to the uproar in the industry called “Tomatogate.” Yet, the numbers haven’t still been in favour of women yet.
Another issue that this episode highlight is the problem of racism that came as a reckoning to the public when Billboard removed Lil Nas X’s Old Town Road from its charts.
Explained Season 3 Episode 13: Final Thoughts
Music is a way of communicating and telling one’s story, especially country music. In today’s age, it might seem to have lost the shine, but we can definitely find new ways to renovate it to suit in with the audience because what is life if not the constant art of moving forward and discovering new things with a touch of old memories?Instagram & Facebook to keep yourself updated with the latest news and reviews.