Oldies, but Goodies: Why Old Music Doesn’t Suck

Let me start out by saying that most of my music is older than my parents. My friends don’t know my favorite songs or artists. In fact, they’re scared to let me handle the aux most of the time because who knows about what’s going to play? It’s not that I don’t enjoy modern music; my current favorites just happen to be older. What other 20-year old girl prefers the late Otis Redding to the beautiful Shawn Mendes?

I get made fun of a lot for it. I mean, even my grandparents call me an old soul. I didn’t really care much about it until recently. It was just a typical Saturday night and my friends were hanging out in my room. The speaker was connected to my phone and I honestly had no idea what to play. I kept switching from Beyoncé to Lady Gaga to Post Malone and my friends could tell I was seriously struggling. One of them took my phone to look at my playlists and said “Well, this sucks. All of this is old.” I understand having different tastes in music. However, I don’t think old music “sucks” simply because it’s old. 

The other day, I found myself diving deep into classic jazz. I somehow went from listening to John Coltrane to Duke Ellington to Billy Holiday to Etta James. All of this began from a simple YouTube search for “A Love Supreme.” For me, this is new. These are things I haven’t heard before or anywhere else. Sure, the same goes for music being produced today. Maybe some of it has to do with nostalgia, but most of the things I listen to, I just happen to come across somehow. I’m sure the same can be said for people with tastes in more modern music. I don’t know exactly what it is, but a part of me feels the need to defend what’s old and good. 

You don’t typically come across us old souls much anymore. Radio shows that used to advertise hits from the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s seem to be changing their tune to advertise hits from the 90’s, 00’s, and today. Maybe it’s because we can now make sounds that we could never produce before. But in the process, we are losing some of the best, most fundamental music ever made. 

Music is amazing. It’s an entirely different world, really. Nobody can explain what we feel emotionally as individuals in response to what we hear. Basically, what I’m trying to get at is that it’s okay to love the music you do, no matter what generation it belongs to. But in the process, don’t lose its meaning. Music is a language of its own and it shouldn’t get lost in translation between generations. You can always surprise yourself with what you hear, no matter how young or old.