don't need a bible to tell me so
I can tell you the exact moment I opened my heart to liking country music. Because, for years, through middle school and high school, I vehemently denied country music any playing time in my life. I declared it sappy, slow and boring. I rocked out to the Smashing Pumpkins, Pearl Jam, Third Eye Blind, and of course all the classic rock that I've mentioned before. Part of this had to do with not wanting to conform. And part of it had to do with the fact that any boy I had a crush on in high school was definitely not into country.
One Christmas, however, my mom went out on a limb and bought me the CD that featured Tim McGraw's "I Like It, I Love It" song. And as cheesy as that song is to me now, back then it enabled country music to get a foot in the door. I gradually listened to more artists, more songs, and many years later I can say that I'm a fan. I can't take it in extremely large doses or listen to it all day long, and there are only a few groups that I can say are favorites of mine (Sara Evans, Sugarland, Rascal Flatts, Clint Black, and a few others), but I like it. Some days, I absolutely love it, and because it's one of the few music genres virtually free of association with other aspects of my life (i.e., it's not connected with any particular people or dramatic moments in my life), it's "safer" to listen to than other music, and it often brings a smile to my face.
One artist, in particular, appeals to me. I first heard Emmylou Harris's voice crooning from the stereo of one of my college roommates, and it didn't take terribly long for me to appreciate the poetry in her lyrics and the haunting melodies that infuse her songs.
So if you're over on Grooveshark one day (which is free, and a completely awesome place to listen to music), try this playlist. Just click on the "Play All" tab under Emmy Lou Harris. Or if you're unwilling to do that, here's a link, at least, to the song that this title is from, via You Tube.
And this image... this image was taken in Eastern Oregon, in the heart of the Zumwalt Prairie, with a Holga camera. It seemed to embody the concept of "country".