The Official Student Newspaper of Tarleton State University since 1919

the JTAC

The Official Student Newspaper of Tarleton State University since 1919

the JTAC

The Official Student Newspaper of Tarleton State University since 1919

the JTAC

The changing sound of the Stephenville music scene

The Red Dirt Sound series

Music as a whole changes throughout the years. We have seen the rise and fall of multiple genres. As listeners tend to grow tired of a specific style, their taste latches on to new and upcoming styles and artists that are a better match for them as an audience. 

This concept can be described as a pendulum swinging back and forth, when a specific sound is what people are looking for and artists are releasing. You can rest assured that at some point within the next five to seven years, the pendulum will swing back into its previous position leading to a resurgence of a previous style of music. However, this pendulum is not just side to side, it is more of a circle with the pendulum moving throughout it consistently and sometimes erratically. 

In previous years from the start of the Texas Red Dirt scene, it was based in classic western music which focused on storytelling and portraying the emotions of the songwriter. This was a stark contrast from the “bro country,” lifted trucks and beer that Nashville labels are putting out. This is why this genre and scene is flourishing at this moment especially with the inclusion of “ Stone” by Whiskey Myers in the first season of Yellowstone, which allowed people to experience the sound of the genre. 

However, when looking at the Texas and local scenes specifically, we see a further subdivision within it. In the past six to eight years we saw the rise of a “rock-sound” coming from within the genre, with artists like Koe Wetzel and Slade Coulter, this new style took the industry by storm and allowed for the necessary change in the industry. 

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We are now starting to see the pendulum is starting to switch sides again, while the rock sound is personally one of my favorites, you cannot deny that the local scene and the genre is changing as a whole. At this moment, we are seeing a switch back to classic singer-songwriter. We can see this through artists who have blown up in the recent year, such as Zach Bryan and Tyler Childers. However, we are going too see more and more  Appalachian influence with artists such as Noah Kahan becoming more and more mainstream, while Kahan does not fit the Texas Country genre, his music will cause an influence in all genres including our own. 

Changes in the scene are to be expected, each one allows for artists to experiment with what sticks and what their audience want to listen to. 

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Jason Yelvington
Jason Yelvington, Multimedia Editor

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