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Name: Adam Bernard
Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States
About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome.
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New Subgenres of Music
Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Categorization is an evil deemed necessary by most of the music buying public. A lot of artists can’t stand it. They vehemently dislike being put into boxes, but there isn’t a section in the music store for “good stuff” yet, and since that in and of itself is subjective we have categories like Rock, Rap, Pop, Classical, etc. For 2008 I’d like to introduce a few new categories that I feel are subgenres that have been created, although not all of them purposefully, over the past few years. So here are the official Adam’s World music subgenres to recognize and know for 2008.

H-Pop – Japan has their extensive J-Pop scene, which is short for Japanese Pop, but here in America we have our H-Pop scene. H-Pop is short for Heroin Pop. This is the type of music that for one reason or another, be it a catchy hook or a funky beat, grabs on to a listener and refuses to let go. Sometimes these songs are actually great pieces of music, at other times they are pure crap. It really doesn’t matter the quality of the song, in fact sometimes the more awful the song the more addicting it can be. What makes for a great H-Pop song is something that sticks in your head even if you don’t want it to. These are the types of songs where if you hear one lyric from them the entire song gets stuck in your head for days. There was a great scene that illustrates this in the original Wayne’s World movie where Mike Myers is explaining why he’s singing Toni Basil’s “Mickey” in his car. The reason? He had heard it before leaving his house in the morning and it was still running through his head. That is the definition of an H-Pop song. Once you’ve heard it you can’t get rid of it no matter how hard you try. Some songs that qualify as H-Pop for me include Bon Jovi’s “Livin on a Prayer,” No Doubt’s “Just a Girl” and Ashlee Simpson’s “Boyfriend.”

Heisman Music – Heisman Music is a category no artist wants to fall into. Heisman Music refers to artists who have a great deal of hype before they release an album, but then fall flat on their faces when they finally make it to the big time. The Heisman part of the category comes from the fact that so many Heisman trophy winners come out of college with tons of hype and everyone lauding them with praise saying how they’re going to be the next big thing in the NFL, but once the draft is over and they’re suited up and on the field an unusually large percentage of them don’t pan out. A lot of rappers fall prey to being over-hyped and under-delivering, which is why so many mainstream albums can be considered Heisman Music. Ever heard great things about a rapper based on a guest appearance or a mixtape track, but then when you pick up the album it’s pure crap? That’s Heisman Music. I will not embarrass any artists by listing who I feel has created Heisman Music recently, but I think we all know who they are.

Gener-Rock – A guitar riff, a drum solo and a song about a girlfriend… yes, this, my friends, is Gener-Rock. Gener-Rock, which stems from the English word “generic,” refers to all things rock that you’ve heard before, will hear again, and at neither point will stick in your head for longer than the three and a half minutes that it’s actually playing. I would love to name some Gener-Rock bands for you right now, but by definition I can’t, they don’t create something good enough to be memorable. There is also an offshoot of Gener-Rock, Gener-Rap. Gener-Rap is the type of rap music that when you hear it you can point to it and say “that’s rap music,” but there is nothing about it unique enough to warrant further defining. There are TONS of Gener-Rap artists out there today and much like the Gener-Rock artists you’ll know them when you hear them… and then forget them instantly.

There you have it, my three new subgenres of music for 2008. Personally, I’ve already used the terms in casual conversation a number of times and plan on continuing to. The other day someone asked me about a rapper who had a lot of buzz and if I’d heard their album. My response was “yeah, but it was some real Heisman Music.” After I explained the definition my buddy said he was going to start using the term, too. Maybe I can start a trend. Thoughts?

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posted by Adam Bernard @ 7:49 AM  
3 Comments:
  • At 6:51 PM, Blogger ksolo said…

    love it! i think r. kelly is the KING of h-r&b - i think he's sold his soul to the devil for the title :-D

    k

     
  • At 4:51 PM, Blogger Jay Williams said…

    Thanks. Now I know how to describe rhymes from assorted weed carriers. Gene-rap.

     
  • At 11:39 AM, Blogger Lee said…

    It's funny because I would think that H-Pop would be some type of Trainspotting-esque music where it lulled me into a coma.

     
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