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当代乡村 Contemporary Country

Contemporary Country出现于70年代末期,以George Strait和Randy Travis为首的乡村歌手们回归根源乡村音乐,但加入了电吉他和鼓,使此类型乡村音乐更接近摇滚、流行乐化。

当代乡村是具有美国民族特色的流行音乐。早期,不同于流行摇滚乐那样有属于自己的俱乐部、录音公司、电视节目,乡村音乐多传播于电台,电台播音也是他们唯一可以扬名的媒介。到了后期,随着信息媒介的日益发达,当代乡村音乐也越来越多的被广大群众所熟知,而不仅限于南部地区,从95年恢复的格莱美最佳乡村专辑,到独立的乡村音乐学院奖,在美国主流的Billboard榜单也可以看到乡村歌曲取得好成绩。

田纳西州Nashville是美国乡村音乐的发源地,在美国有很大影响,现在已经成为乡村音乐的代名词,像其他特有风格的厂牌一样,你会见到例如Mercury Nashville、Capitol Nashville、 Sony Nashville、Arista Nashville等,可以说看到Nashville的字样就应该想到这张专辑的大风格了~

当代乡村音乐和流行乐、摇滚乐在歌曲主题还是小有不同,前者有八大主题:一、爱情;二、失恋;三、牛仔幽默;四、找乐;五、乡村生活方式;六、地区的骄傲;七、家庭;八、上帝与国家。前两个主题绝不是乡村音乐所独有,但是后六大主题则把当代乡村与其他音乐流派区分开来。简而言之,乡村的人们有他们自己的幽默感;喜欢牛仔风格的疯玩;以一种与城市人很不同的方式生活;以自己所在的乡镇、州、地区为荣;极为重视家庭;不羞于表达宗教情感与爱国情感。

Following the rise of the pop-oriented Urban Cowboy style in the late '70s and early '80s, singers like George Strait and Randy Travis set their sights on bringing country music back to its roots, beginning a movement known as the New Traditionalists. While their sound drew primarily on classic honky tonk, it also boasted all the advantages of updated production techniques and equipment, proving that pure country music could sound authentic yet modern. At its outset, Contemporary Country built upon this revelation, taking the foundation laid by new traditionalist country and infusing it with pop/rock sensibilities — without sounding wimpy. During the late '80s and early '90s, contemporary country was still essentially country at its core, even though it was reaching a wider audience than ever, thanks in no small part to Garth Brooks and his latent rock influences. Although pop-crossover hit singles were still a rare occurrence at this point, contemporary country albums began to sell in unprecedented numbers in the wake of Brooks' success, and while contemporary country was by no means restricted to male singers, they — with a few notable exceptions — were the main early beneficiaries of the music's greater visibility. This wave of male artists dominated the early to mid-'90s, mixing country grit and simple, line-dance-ready songcraft in varying proportions, with the new traditionalist movement continuing to hold a strong influence over many; some of the less substantive in the bunch were dubbed "hat acts," after what cynics described as their most appealing attribute. All of the increased exposure eventually pulled contemporary country farther and farther into mainstream pop music, and a number of (mostly) female artists began to actively pursue crossover success; in the most pronounced cases, their music differentiated itself from full-fledged pop/rock only by a certain twang in the vocals. While shifting contemporary country away from its roots, this willingness to play to an even wider audience resulted in massive, genre-dominating popularity for acts like Shania Twain, LeAnn Rimes, the Dixie Chicks, and Faith Hill in the late '90s. Whether the songs were closer to neo-honky tonk or pop/rock, though, contemporary country was always marked by its shiny, radio-ready production, which occasionally incorporated synthesizers, but above all kept the music smooth and polished, helping make it more accessible to country, rock, and pop fans alike.



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