So I got to wondering why this disparity of product availability exists. And my ‘political correctness chip’ sparked into life and told me that I was seeing evidence of racism – we in Australia prefer white over black artists it told me. Disquieting. But then I started asking if there were other distinctions between the artists named. Was genre the key factor here? The artists with all the posters and patches perform rock (and rock-derived music) while those of scant paraphernalia perform soul (and soul-derived music).
One test of this explanation was to consider a larger number of artists (while still confining things to ‘classics’). Lo-and-behold one can find consumer items relating to Jimi Hendrix (a black rocker) much moreso than Joe Cocker (a white soulter). I relaxed then – there is nothing the matter with preferring some genres over others. But then I started asking another question – why do we as a society show such a preference for some genres over others (particularly since they share a common musical heritage)? Possibly my original suspicions would play a part in the answer. I wonder…
I may be indulging in gross generalizations here. The extended family of popular music is much more complex than I suggest here. And humanity cannot be understood in terms of the dichotomy I use except in some specific contexts. Still...
Labels: Music Related Stuff