Switching it up: Genre changes in student life and artistry

in Entertainment by

In a field as vast as the entertainment industry is today, it’s hard to restrict creators to one specific genre of music or artistry. Examples such as Olivia Rodrigo, who’s combining pop and rock to make her unique sound; Snoop Dogg, who falls in-between the rap and reggae category; and Lil Nas X, who combines country, rap and alternative music to “create” his own genre, have all broken the genre barrier in music. 

One of the most common genre switches is between country music and pop. This genre switch, mainly popularized by pop megastar Taylor Swift, is a path commonly taken due to the correlation between the two genres. Country music is mainly associated with strong songwriting skills, while pop is more instrumental and production-based. Artists such as Beyoncé, Darius Rucker and Miley Cyrus have all embraced this genre change, as these songwriting and production qualities are often considered necessary to skyrocket into fame. Embracing both aspects of the county and then pop side of the music industry can help an artist flourish, as Beach Cities Rock Club stated. 

Another reason as to why artists switch genres is to keep creating unique music, as Audio Services Studio states. With streaming services preserving recorded music from as early as the 1910’s to today, it’s growing increasingly difficult for artists to have a unique sound. This leads to combinations in music and evolution in genres. One clear example of this is rock music, which has transformed from heavy metal to alternative to now EDM (Electronic Dance Music). While all these genres fall under the “rock” category in the Grammys, they are each distinct sounds created through the mesh of genres. 

Due to this ever-changing nature of music, students on campus have decided to form a Contemporary Music Club (CMC). This club covers songs from pop classics to R&B music. All pieces performed are played and sung by students, with students on the drums, guitar and mic. Annually, the club hosts the Battle of the Bands competition, as well as other events such as an Open Mic night and a CMC Funk/Soul night to honor graduating seniors. 

Rising senior Zoe Obanu stated, “I love participating in the CMC club because it gives me a place to play music I really love and enjoy.” Obanu performed “Dreams” by The Cranberries for the CMC Open Mic night. “I love how I can perform anything from alternative indie music to hard rock, especially since a lot of classes at Heritage are classical and we don’t play modern music. It really shows diversity in student life and in music overall.”  

With this continuous blend of genres, the evolution of music has definitely changed over time and will continue to. 

Taylor Swift has cited artists such as Shania Twain and Joni Mitchell as inspiration and courage to switch into pop, where she then dominated the charts due to the songwriting skills she acquired from country, making her stand out from her pop peers. (Photo/Flickr – Becky Sullivan)

As a rising senior, this is Emma’s third year in the Patriot Post and she’s excited to be the Online Editor this year. Outside of newspaper, she’s Co-President of the journalism honor society, Quill and Scroll, and also the Editor-in-Chief of the Sigma Xi Honor Society magazine. She is also involved in and has officer positions in Science Research, Sigma Xi, FBLA, Model UN, SNHS, and other clubs, including honor societies and her own nonprofit. In her free time, she enjoys reading, watching dramas on Netflix, listening to Taylor Swift, and hanging out with friends and family. She’s very excited to work on the Patriot Post this year!