(I might lose friendships for this... or at least, weaken a few.)
In my life, I've spent quite a bit of time making fun of country music... and I've spent an equal or greater amount of time singing it.
It's the genre I grew up on, but it was incredibly uncool during my adolescent years (and, arguably, now). While, in some ways, it can't compare at all to my other, superior, more intelligent music - indie rock, experimental, prog rock, whatever - country music has something going for it. It has a huge following, and an exceptionally large closet-fan base. I'm among them - don't often broadcast my love of country music. I'd rather be seen as a girl who likes the Dropkick Murphys, or Feist, or something. Truthfully, I would choose a Garth Brooks concert over ANY of those artists. Hands down.
I always thought country music was supposed to be only for southerners and Western New York tried to steal it. The truth is, as I wrote below, that simple way of life talked about in this genre doesn't only apply to the south. It exists anywhere there are wide open spaces, hard working people, and an appreciation for the more genuine things in life.
The first video goes along with what I just said extremely well. It's about enjoying the good things in life: a little bit of chicken fried, cold beer on a friday night. The second one, if you actually enjoyed the first any, is an incredible video of my man, Garth Brooks, performing one of my favorite songs EVER, Callin' Baton Rouge.