Discussion: Re-Evaluating the Music of Your Youth

The following quote caught my eye recently in an online blog:

It’s a funny thing I’ve noticed lately, listening to the “classic rock” stations that are now — unbelievably — broadcasting the soundtrack of my life: bad music sounds so good once it becomes the music of your youth. All the songs you hated, all the bands you mocked, all the pop clichés you spurned because you were so much cooler than all that now sound so soulful, so very real.

It’s so true, isn’t it? Any songs or artists that you have re-evaluated now that time has passed?  I’ll admit to having a little nostalgic love for Ms. Twain. :)


  1. I’m only 15, and I feel the same way about songs of a certain era or year. For me it’s anything before my Dad died, maybe it was because I was just about to become a teen and that was the last of my childhood years but anything from 2005 and back I can’t help but think of some past time.

    I also agree that Shania brings some sort of nostalgic feeling of the 90’s.

  2. Well I’m only 18 but there are some artists who I go back to now and remember listening to them when I was like 5. The song I remember best from my childhood is Alan Jackson’s “Little Bitty” which I acutally hated back then because they called me Little Bitty after that, because I was the smallest in the family. However it brings back memories of my family working on our house, it was a big hit during that time.

  3. I’ve gone in both directions with artists that I either liked or didn’t like early on. One that I went from like to dislike was Toby Keith. Much preferred what he was doing in the 90s. I really have an appreciation for older artists that I didn’t care for as a kid, though, such as George Jones and Elvis Presley.

  4. I’m only 19 and as a kid, I really wasn’t a fan of male country artists since the women of the 90’s were miles better than the men! But now, I find myself going back in time to listen to certain albums male artists have released. Some of those artists include Brad Paisley, Tracy Lawrence, and Kenny Chesney (who I dispise now but his earlier stuff is great!).

    I also find myself going way back in time to the stuff my parents listened to. Artists like Tammy Wynette, George Jones, Patsy Cline, Merle Haggard, and the list goes on and on, but they all released amazing stuff! It’s cool to go back…it make me think of my childhood! haha

  5. It’s really the music of my parents, but since it was always blaring in the car on road trips as a child, I’d say it counts. I’m now a huge fan of those John Conlee and Neil Diamond songs that were in heavy rotation in my parents’ tape deck back in the eighties.

    I liked actual eighties music back then anyway, so I haven’t grown fonder with time. Quite a bit of it I now like less. But I get hooked on the XM 90’s Station very easily, which is really the decade that I associate myself with. Harvey Danger, anyone?

  6. Great topic!

    Yeah, xm90 is easy to get hooked on. I used to like eighties music too, but I lost almost all tolerance for it. Like Kevin, the 90s is really more the music of my youth anyway.

    Like was said above I’ve gained a ton of appreciation for the legends that I certainly didn’t have as a kid. I was also a lot more “open” to music within the country genre as a kid too. Most cliches went right past me and I could be taken very easily by sappy love songs. I don’t know why I’m more cynical about love songs these days, since I actually have a great marriage and all. I suppose its the songs themselves that have become the problem for me. I like my country to be more traditional nowadays as well, even though I’m open to much more music outside of country than I was as a kid.

    I guess the best indicator of my music tastes changing is the amount of music that I have in my collection that I wouldn’t mind giving away.

    Oh yeah, Shania is definitely great nestalgia for me.

  7. I also look back at the music of my youth quite often. But I like to see what else is/was out there. Seeing what my parents listened to, and forming my own opinions on them. I actually found that listening to music from the 90’s, you can really tell what music has stood up against time.

    I loved Garth Brooks when he was in his hayday, however, I listen to him now and begin to question…What did I see in him that put him in a league of his own? Don’t get me wrong, I still like Garth Brooks, but I now look back and feel he was a bit overrated. However, I also look back and find songs that at the time I didn’t like, but now find them fun and refreshing. The one that comes to mind is Kathy Mattea’s 455 Rocket, and a lot of Mary Chapin Carpenter songs.

    It’s also fun to listen to older songs by artists, and then their new songs out now. George Strait and Reba both come to mind, for different reasons. George Strait is still consistent, and most of his music then could pass for the music he released now. Whereas Reba’s music has changed dramatically to what she produced in the 80’s, 90’s and present. Arguably, the only two artists able to stay in mainstream country for almost 30 years, and both had different takes on it. Reba evolved and adapted to the current changes in the industry, and George; who stayed with the tried and true.

    Ok I think my message may have gotten a bit off topic, but that’s what I love about these open discussions…they get you thinking.

  8. Rock mentioned Toby Keith – and I really loved his early 90s output, especially the ballads like ‘He Ain’t Worth Missin’, ‘Who’s That Man’ and others. But I feel he really fell off his mark at some point at the turn of the century. But those old Toby songs take me back.

    There are others, like some of the songs of George Strait, Reba, Tanya Tucker, etc …

  9. Looks like many people can relate. Another thing that I have noticed in my family is that my sister likes more of my Dad’s music, which was 50’s and 60’s pop and rock, and 70’s soft rock, but I can’t stand most of his cd’s. Meanwhile I like more of what my Mom listened to(she was the parent that liked country the most.) So while I like some music that my Dad liked(Mostly just Fleetwood Mac), I like more of what my Mom grew up with. Another good topic might be which parent’s music you like more? Or maybe I’m just being really annoying posting twice :?

    And now I really want to get XM just for that 90’s station lol.

  10. Although it’s much maligned, I enjoy the “Nashville Sound” and “Countrypolitan” recordings of the late 1960s and early 1970s. These were country music gussied up vocal choruses and strings as produced by Chet Atkins, Billy Sherrill and Owen Bradley. While I would have preferred the vocal choruses be banished, I find myself wishing for that form of production over today’s overly loud rock guitars that often drown out the lead vocals

  11. Speaking of ’90s (and tangentially, country music), “Justified and Ancient” popped up on my iPod this morning as I was getting ready for work. The KLF and Tammy Wynette. It must be the nineties.

  12. KEVIN! Oh no you di’n’t bring up “Justified and Ancient”!!
    I love that song. It is SO “out there” but yet so fabulous. God bless Tammy Wynette for doing that with KLF. It’s brilliant!

  13. I was already shedding tears before I hit this board and I drilled into this thread and from the first post from Jake. This thread has been an emotional rollercoaster.

    I was shedding tears because I went back even further than you all can imagine. I went back to youtube with the search string Wildwood Flower – The Carter Family (sure I have a June Carter/Maybelle Carter- Mrs. Robinson-type fantasy, but drill on the lyrics! YOU JUST DON’T SEE LYRICS LIKE THIS IN MODERN COUNTRY. It’s like Bob Dylan said I am going this way and Country Music went that away. She is beautiful and ALL the Carter Family Girls are hot! Anyway… I then went to the one YouTube: Wildwood Flower – June Carter Cash, which started the tears a flowin’. I dove for tissue. I wished I could have paid the one dude with the long beard to sit it out and let me substitute on the gig. What I would have paid for that opportunity! And what’s with the one lady that is there fanning June Carter Cash? Maybe she knew how much time she had left?

    Jake, it will lift your spirits to check these two videos out. First the black-and-white Carter Family one and then the video/documentary.

    And to the Pearl Jam fan: ‘If Eddie Vedder decided to take over country music, his only legitimate contenders would be Brad Paisley and Gary Allan. I think that there are three songs that would make a good Pearl Jam/Country covers: ‘There He Goes’, ‘Given to Fly’ and ‘Garden of Stone’.

    And to the Shania Twain fan: If she colaborated with Eddie Vedder it could actually create a rip in the time fabric continuum thereby causing a path into the fifth dimension which we could then all escape into, and so too, escape from global warming, hatred, and cynicism and Sarah Palin. I would stand in line to buy the CD.

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