December 28, 2014

"How do you feel about country music?"

That's question #17 on the "What is your social class?" test we were talking about yesterday. There are 2 options: "I don't care for the twang" and "I like it!" Maybe I'm over-precise, but I always take the form of the options seriously. What are you supposed to do if you don't like country music enough to buy anything or but you do listen occasionally as you pop around on the satellite radio as you drive all day? What if what you "don't care" about is what "the twang" is supposed to mean?

I drove from Austin, Texas to Emporia, Kansas yesterday, and I mostly listened to talk channels (like PRX and NPR Now), but I sampled the music channels part of the time, and I usually don't listen to a whole song, but I stuck with Trisha Yearwood's "Walkaway Joe" until the end. I didn't notice any "twang" not to "care for." So I picked "I like it!" on the quiz. Was that why I missed out on being "upper middle class"?

The gospel music question had answers with the opposite problem. Instead of making me want to say "neither," it made me want to say "both." The answers for gospel music are: "It can be wonderful" and "I'm not a fan." It's easy to concede that it "can be wonderful," even you think it's mostly overdone and too histrionically religious. And you can enjoy it a fair amount without seeing yourself as "a fan."

What do you think of Althouse's analysis of multiple choice questions?




pollcode.com free polls

ADDED: If you can't see the buttons to vote, go here.

53 comments:

Meade said...

Queen of the polls made me LOL.

Now put down that blog, get on the road and get home, woman.

Kristian Holvoet said...

Lol. None of the above. If you think AA's analysis of poll questions is over thought, you should hear my wife (a statistician). The form of the question and the answers can lead to so much bias. And she is also so literal (similar to 'I don't it' and 'It CAN be wonderful'. She'd instantly get annoyed. It's almost like the survey questions were intended to give certain answers, like the questioners had an agenda. Hmm....

Laslo Spatula said...

'All of the Above' is missing.

I am Laslo.

Laslo Spatula said...

'Queen of the poles' made me think of strippers. I like country music better when there are strippers.

Same with gospel.

I am Laslo.

Mark said...

I voted for 'Poll doesn't work on Android phone' but it failed to register.

JSD said...

Country music comes in good, bad, funny and sad. Sometime its country and you don’t know it. Wilco did whole albums in the genre, but they’re never classified as such. I used to hate it, but I heard “Sunday Morning Coming Down” after one of those 1980’s 48 hour where-the-fuck-am-I weekends, I was hooked.

F said...

Those Facebook games that tell you what social class you belong to or what movie character you are (!?) interest me not in the slightest. Perhaps if I tried one one day I'd find them amusing, but they really look to me to be click bait, nothing more. A little like the notifications that one friend or another is playing some detective game or something, they all strike me as a sad waste of time. I can't help but think "get a life."

Meade said...

Gospel Country is the best.

traditionalguy said...

Trisha Yearwood is from one of the oldest settled parts of middle Georgia. That culture is from comparatively civilized and educated English settlers rather than an over the mountains Appalachian Scots-Irish that speaks with a twang.

She sings good.

Phil 3:14 said...

Well I took the linked poll and in the description of who I am these caught my eye:
"Your people..."

I thought we weren't supposed to say that. I've been "other'd"

"You're probably a decent judge of others' emotions, and either a non-evangelical Christian, an atheist, or an agnostic"

Even though when asked explicitly I answered evangelical protestant.

(and why was the choice "muslim or evangelical christian"; are we really lumped in the same pile)

As for the AA polls, I usually skip them because I get claustrophic (i.e. I don't like cubby holes)

LarsPorsena said...

"Queen of the polls made me LOL"

If AA likes country she's the queen of proles.

jr565 said...

I generally like it better when rock/pop stars do countryish songs.

rwnutjob said...

Polls are always simplifying.
There's a difference between George Jones and today's over-produced arena rock with a twang.

Ralph Hyatt said...

Personally, I love classic country, the stuff that my parents and grandparents would listen to: Patsy Cline, The Carter Family, Johnny Cash. Music that I couldn't stand when I was growing up.

I don't like the newer stuff. Most of it sounds like pop, with a twang.

I don't mind twang, but it has to be authentic twang.

Ralph Hyatt said...

I see rwnutjob agrees.

Ralph Hyatt said...

As for Gospel, a lot of classic country music is gospel. Ever heard "Were You There" by Johnny Cash?

Modern gospel? I have heard someone who is in a gospel band call it 7/11 music, 7 verses repeated 11 times.

Ralph Hyatt said...

A lot of modern gospel music sounds, to me, to be in the "Jesus is my boyfriend" genre.

Abdul Abulbul Amir said...

There is no point in overanalyzing stupid surveys like the one you took. It says much more about the way the survey maker thinks than anything else.

Wilbur said...

I despise what passes for country music today.

But when you say that to people, you sound like an old mossbacked curmudgeon, mostly because they've never experienced the real thing.

And what happened to the "western" in country-western music?

Laslo Spatula said...

Wilbur said...
"And what happened to the "western" in country-western music?"

It went to the same place that the 'roll' of 'rock-and-roll' went.

I am Laslo.

Mrs. X said...

I want to vote in Ann's poll, but there are no 'vote' or 'view' buttons visible on my iPhone. Are you messing with us, Althouse?

Drive safe!

dbp said...

"She oughta know, she's the queen of polls with options other than the one I want."

Though in this case, Althouse does provide exactly the answer I was looking for.

rhhardin said...

Travis and Jones "Country Boys" was good; and Wynette and Jones "One."

Dixie Chicks "Cowboy take me away."

Imus lists some nice titles now and then, like "You're not tbe best but you're the best that I can do"

"If I'd killed you when I wanted to I'd be out by now."

Danno said...

Ditto on the "Vote" button issue, and I am on a windoze PC.

Thank goodness you have satellite radio for such a trip. I remember my weekly back and forth commutes between Saint Paul and Roselle Illinois back in the mid'90s. The stations (being mostly in Wisconsin) drifted out quickly and the choices tended to be between the local farm report stations, bad oldies rock channels, country channels, and the Green Bay Packers radio network (on Sundays in the fall). Usually made for a long drive.

This summer I drove to Colorado and back to pick up my youngest daughter at an Economics camp at UC-Boulder. I was able to listen to my alternative rock/indie channels the whole way because of SiriusXM satellite. Made for a short drive.

Joseph Blieu said...

More great c and w songs. If your feelin I don't love you, feel again. Get your young out of my mouth, I'm kissing you goodby. I could cool a six pack on the shelf of yor heart.

Michael K said...

""If I'd killed you when I wanted to I'd be out by now."


Love it.

Ann Althouse said...

The poll isn't working on my laptop. Don't know what the trouble is. Consider it a poll that doesn't need to be taken. It's its own joke. Okay?

Ann Althouse said...

If you can't see the buttons to vote, go here.

That will work, I think.

LYNNDH said...

NPR??? Ah yes, your are really a liberal aren't you.

Conserve Liberty said...

Middle Class values, upper-middle-class income - pretty close, but (based upon the machine-intelligence textual response) challenging to correctly categorize.

Good.

BTW - there is no upper class in the USA. 'Upper Class' is a social designation properly limited to societies with a history of rule by a monarchy.

RigelDog said...

I took the same test and that is EXACTLY what went through my head re the music questions. Trisha Yearwood is seriously talented. I also disagreed with the question that scored responsible driving at pedestrian crosswalks as indicating LOW class behavior.

donald said...

If you don't like Hank Williams you can kiss my ass.

Also Jason and The Scorchers

Babaluigi said...

I do not care much for what I identify as "Grand Old Opry approved" "country music", and separate it from Bluegrass, which I greatly enjoy. Growing up, I was stuck in the desert with almost nothing but nothing country music broadcast from KELP in El Paso, and had quite my fill after 5 years of that...(although I do make an exception for Johnny Cash- I guess I appreciated the humor in "A Boy Named Sue")...

donald said...

Trisha Yearwood is from Senoia, GA. She's a neighbor, goes to Crooks Grocery and Crooks Auto shop and everything. She is seriously nice.

St. George said...

Check out Elvis doing "Blue Christmas" on his 1968 special. Raunchy filthy leather-wearin' profusely sweatin' country sneerin' gospel.

"You'll be doin' all right with your Christmas of white,
but I'll have a blue, blue, blue, blue, blue Christmas..."

Lord a'mercy!

Dr Weevil said...

Why bother with Elvis? The classic performance of 'Blue Christmas' can be found here.

Ralph Hyatt said...

@Wilbur

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cSZfUnCK5qk

Ralph Hyatt said...

and since it Christmas time:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mER2fGuSqF8

eddie willers said...

Trisha Yearwood is from Senoia, GA.

How's Senoia been since the zombie invasion?

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

How do I feel about Country music?

"It don't matter who's in Austin, Bob Wills is still the king."

I think the premise of the question is silly. What is country music, anyway? I love Western Swing such as Asleep at the Wheel and Bob Wills. I love a lot of Merle Haggard's stuff. Roy Clarke, Jerry Reed, Marty Stuart. Willie Nelson

I also like some, not a lot, of the old timey stuff from the 50s and 60s.

Lots of others. Most modern country is pretty foregttable, IMHO.

Country music covers so much ground that to ask if one likes it is a stupid question.

It's like asking "Do you like rock and roll?" without being any more specific.

John Henry

The Cracker Emcee said...

Economics camp?

Agree about Jason and the Scorchers.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

I agree that Sirius is nice and a great change from the past. I remember spending most of my time trying to find radio stations that didn't suck. Then, when I found one, losing it in 45 minutes.

OTOH, listening to Sirious, you still have to listen to what they want you to listen to. I pretty much never even turn on the radio anymore. I rely on my MP3 (NOT and I-Pod) player. I listen to what I want when I want to.

Ditto cable TV. If it weren't for my wife watching the local channels, I'd kill my cable. Useless bunch of crap that they want me to watch on their schedule, not mine.

John Henry

donald said...

Did you ever see it before Eddie?

It's unbelievable. There are two night clubs (One owned by Zac Brown, where you can get a $22.00 martini and deal with asshole bouncers with head sets, the only bad part). A fine dining place. A world class chocolate shop, all kinds of TWD type stuff and of course the great Senoia Coffee shop.

Also looks like I can get another $25-40k for my house, which will hurt (To sell), but I can't live there anymore so you know.

Guided tours. Geeks from all over the world.

Freeman Hunt said...

Ralph Hyatt wrote:
A lot of modern gospel music sounds, to me, to be in the "Jesus is my boyfriend" genre.

When we listened to it for about forty-five minutes recently, that's what we found.

Shouldn't old country music and old gospel music be counted separately from new country music and new gospel music?

Birches said...

I felt the same way as Althouse did about the gospel music question.

I always say I hate country music, but I really like The Eagles, so I think I probably do like country music, I just don't know it.

Is a preference for heavy metal considered lower class? And what counts as heavy metal these days? I love Metallica and AC/DC, but could probably do without slipknot.

Anonymous said...

I didn't get to that question, but again, I wouldn't have been able to answer.


I can like stuff that has country influence, wouldn't necessarily be considered country by real country folks, but would likely be considered suspect by downtown types. Maybe "off-country"?: e.g. The Civil Wars, Barton Hallow; Hank Williams III, Straight to Hell (via Wonderful Whites of WV); Rising Appalachia (R.I.S.E.), Scale Down and Across the Blue Ridge Mountains. Back in the day I liked "Rank and File" which old, rural types at the time said was closer to the real thing than what wss on country radio at the time.

Gospel depends entirely on my mood. I went through an Abyssinian Baptist Gospel Choir phase, but it's not currently my thing.

Anonymous said...

I don't spontaneously think about or listen to country music very much. But I can strongly recommend Outlaw Country on Sirius. Its my favorite channel and I've talked to others (who are not country fans) who say the same thing.

Pete From Baltimore said...

Almost all of my cultural tastes would probably classify me as "Upper middle class".Despite the fact that im a construction laborer.And have been one for over 25 years

I have nothing against country music or NASCAr.But fail to see why im supposed to like both , just because I dig dirt for a living.

RecChief said...

Old Country (Hank Sr, Ralph Stanley, and others of that era)? or New Country (what's coming out of Nashville today)?

A world of difference.

FleetUSA said...

As I said yesterday, she outmanouvered the questions to be just middling when in reality she is appropriately upper.

Ralph Hyatt said...

"It's like asking "Do you like rock and roll?" without being any more specific."

Yep, probably not a lot of Beach Boy fans who are also into heavy metal. There could be a few, but the overlap is going to be pretty small.

And since these days you can hear Bluegrass on college radio stations and paeans to Hank Williams Sr on NPR, being a fan of some country music is no longer a lower class marker.

Titus said...

I hate country music.

Except, Tammy Wynette's stand by your man.

And Patsy, natch.

Rockeye said...

I went to a school in Emporia back in the early 90's, courtesy of the US Army. I remember then thinking that Emporia only existed because sometimes it takes a long time to get from where you are to where you want to be,and its better than sleeping in your car. Horrible town. A truly huge meat packing plant and a Dolly Madison factory on opposite sides of town made for a very, uh, unique aroma of incinerated blood and sugar-cinnamon.