In a time where the political climate heats up on the daily, peace seems like a myth. The music world is no less tumultuous for listeners. More and more, people who listen to certain genres of music are shamed for doing so.
“What the HECK is this TRASH?” said one of my friends as I put on some ‘60s music in the car. I could only respond with a quick change of music and an expression of embarrassment. To my dismay, I had received the same reaction to this song as I had to my Stevie Wonder music. “Ugh, why are we listening to COUNTRY MUSIC?” said the passenger.
This is what music shaming looks like. Music Shaming is the act of embarrassing someone because of the type of music that person listens to. Although music shaming seems childish, it occurs more often than one might expect. The most common targets of music shamers are listeners of pop music, country music, or classical music, but there are no genres that are safe from shaming.
“I think people can just be close-minded, and like to get into the habit of listening to a certain type of music and then listening to something else just isn’t in their range,” senior Mary Elizabeth Needham said.
This lack of open-mindedness is similar to the political and religious tolerance of modern day.
“I have been music shamed because I like Kanye,” senior William Langford said. “And the person really didn’t like Kanye, and his political beliefs and stuff, so they hated on me.”
The actions and beliefs of an artist may not be reflected in the listeners and fans, but sometimes music shamers may believe the artist’s actions are appreciated by the listeners. In recent times as well, Colin Kapernick kneeled for the national anthem. This caused many people to boycott his corporate sponsor, Nike. This level of intolerance continues to rise and music shaming is one symptom.
“Because of the type of music someone listens to,” Langford said. “Some people think it can say a lot about the type of person. Certain stigmas are attached to certain genres of music or a certain artist so then one can try to assume something about someone because of the music they listen to.”