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How to Judge a Country Song?

January 31, 2009

I was looking over some of my past reviews the other day and something came to mind about my blog that I think needs to be addressed. For starters, this blog contains both technical and personal opinions from me, however some of the grades I give are not based so much off of personal taste rather than quality or the artist’s capabilities or timing etc, technical stuff. So how can this be? The answer is simple, my grading policy on this blog is done through a combination of personal opinion and “professional” observation. While the song may not be perfected enough to constitute a good grade, that does not mean I hate it.

I may grade some songs as A’s while others do as C’s or D’s and vice verse. This does not necessarily reflect how I would react to the song if I heard it on the radio driving down the road. My point here is that everyone has their own opinions concerning what makes a good song, but sometimes technical quality and personal opinions can clash.

So here’s a new discussion for you guys, generally open ended questions that I hope will receive some interesting results:

How do you judge a country song?

and/or

Should this reflect what you really think or is it OK to take into consideration unbiased methods with no personal interference to judge a song?

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 31, 2009 11:55 pm

    ‘Music is art’ … and having said that, our perception and appreciation is going to differ from mind to mind (or in this case, ear to ear) and is going to remain very subjective. I think you do a great job in your reviews; you are fair, explain your opinions and are consistent.

    I have always maintained that there’s a difference, for example, in “The Top 10 BEST Female Vocalists” versus “The Top 10 MOST IMPORTANT Female Vocalists” … “Best” relies more so on personal influence, individual song success and noteworthy material while “Most Important” relies on these plus industry impact, historic value and industry contribution. Patsy Cline might make both lists, she was a great singer AND an important force in country music – becoming the standard to which all others in her genre were compared to. Sammi Smith, who had fewer top charters, might qualify as one of the best due to her smokey, torch singer vocals, but not one of the most important.

    At any rate – I think you’re doing a great job, using just enough subjectivity as well as objectivity. Whew!

    At my personal blog, I’m in the process of addressing “The Saddest Country Songs of All Time” (I think I’m up to #7 [out of 10]) – and I tried to be as objective as possible. Your review style was, with appreciation, an inspiration to my compiling of the list. Keep up the good work!

  2. Kent permalink
    February 1, 2009 1:04 am

    I personally like to let my bias get the best of me. I really don’t care how great everyone thinks George Strait is, he puts me to sleep! So don’t be afraid to be harsh with your own opinions, because this is your blog.

    But I’m also extremely shallow. Lyrics don’t really make a difference to me if I don’t like the sound of the song. You don’t need to sink as low as me, if you don’t want to.

  3. cowboybleau permalink*
    February 1, 2009 1:54 am

    Thanks Kent, but this wasn’t for me to look for rightousness of my reviews, just to see if anyone else finds themselves thinking the way I do etc.

    Sometimes I can be arsh on a song because it does have issues etc., but that doesn’t mean i don’t like it. I could still be a fan, route for it, sing it in the car, etc. Sometimes I get accusations of being contradictory towards my own personal belief in these reviews, but that’s the way i do it. Sometimes personal taste does matter, and sometimes even that doesn’t help a song recover from its negativities.

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