Monday, May 23, 2011

Is rock music dead?

The astounding longevity of Keith Richards aside, I'm starting to wonder if rock music is dead, or maybe just hibernating. Let me explain. . .

Last night, I watched the first couple of hours of the Billboard Music Awards. I love award shows, and I love to see live music performances, so this should have been a win-win situation. Rhianna opened the show, in some kind of white bondage suit and a pink grapefruit wig, gyrating on a floor where hands popped up and didn't grope her. All right. There was a performance by Beyonce that was pretty amazing from a dance perspective, but the song isn't much. There was urban music galore, including Keith Urban, and hip hop, and sort of pop. Bieber won some awards. Taylor Swift had on the same beige nude dress she always wears. No Gaga unfortunately.

Then, I noticed that I didn't see one single performance that could be considered rock and roll. Not one. Nada.

Now, I am a rock and roll based girl. I can appreciate good dance music, good R&B--I even kinda liked Keith Urban, and I'm not a modern country music lover. I think he spends a great deal of time on his hair, too.

No rock music.

Does this mean that rock music has become irrelevant in terms of the Billboard Charts? Has urban music taken over? Or is it pop music that's dominating? Pop music always charts better, because it appeals to pre-teens and teens, and they're the people most likely to buy music. But none of those same kids are listening to rock and roll today, huh? I couldn't have gotten through high school without rock and roll. How about you?

It's enough to make Keith Richards cry pirate tears.

Also, if "Hey, Soul Sister" by Train is considered rock music, maybe it's time to put the genre out of its misery.


  1. I think it's hibernating!

    But it's true what you say...I never hear it anywhere!

    Pop is definitely the most popular but I think it is also because people/teens 'relate' to the singer...

    ..I think if Rock is to become 'mainstream', it will need a 'mainstream' looking person doing it, if that makes sense!

    Have you heard 'Army of Me' by Bjork and Skunk Anansie, is that Rock to you? I mean, they're definitely not 'rock' people but I definitely see it as Rock and I love it but everyone interprets it so differently!

  2. I think they all just retired or are busy remarrying (He! He!) T. :)

  3. I like Bjork, and some of her stuff I would consider rock, but a lot of it is in a league of its own. I was a big alternative rock person, and there doesn't even seem to be much of that--"college music." Or else, I'm out of the loop now, and just not exposed to it.

  4. I personally think it's just in a downswing. Music always goes in cycles. Sometimes rock is on top, sometimes hip hop, sometimes pop... right now we're in a very dance and pop heavy cycle in terms of what gets the highest marks in terms of sales. Give it a few years and it will be something entirely else.