Michael Stipe, REM frontman and White Guy With Guitar, once said, “I’ve always felt that sexuality is a really slippery thing. In this day and age, it tends to get categorized and labeled, and I think labels are for food. Canned food.”
The soundtrack to my life is provided courtesy of White Guy With Guitar.
The first album I ever owned was Son of Son of A Sailor by Jimmy Buffett, White Guy With Guitar.
My best friends in college were White Guys With Guitars.
On our first date, my husband took me to a bar to listen to a White Guy With Guitar.
We were engaged within earshot of a White Guy With Guitar.
Our wedding song was performed by our friend at the reception. He’s a White Guy With Guitar.
White Guy With Guitar has carried me through the last ten winters with his charming island and ocean ballads.
I have healthy, diversional rockstar crushes on about five White Guys With Guitars.
There seems to be some disturbing trend making headlines across the country. People are “fed up” with White Guys With Guitars.
It’s true. 4/5 American Idol viewers agree. No more White Guys With Guitars, America.
Except that I like WGWG, and I guess that makes me socially irresponsible.
Of course, it’s unfortunate that “they” put a label on it. Now it sounds all racisty, sexisty, and narrow-minded to declare yourself a fan of old timers like James Taylor and newbies like Phillip Phillips. It seems contrived to throw in a comment like “But I like Jimmie Hendrix and Bob Marley too”, just to even the skin color score.
I’m ready to move past this America. I’m really tired of “white” being a derogatory term, and a powerless position in terms of political correctness. I really don’t care what a musician looks like- skin color, hair color, body type, gender image- but I do like a familiar genre of music that is just a part of my generation. And being part of a demographic (working-age women) that holds the earning and purchasing power in this country, I guess WGWG will continue to be well supported. Except now I feel a little guilty, and ignorant, for toe-tapping along with Dave Matthews and Jack Johnson. Oh, and Zac Brown and my beloved Kenny… just shame on me. And Mat Kearney, Ryan Adams, and Brasher Bogue… here’s the thing: it’s not you, it’s me.
Let the next generation decide what music they like without social pressure and stigmas, and WGWG will naturally fade to background music in nursing homes and martini bars. I want WGWG to grow old with me- not be buried alive.
So, if you’ll pardon my non-particpation in the perpetuation of racial biases, I will just go back to appreciating the music, buying the music, and crushing on musicians without second-guessing what consequences my musical preferences have on the greater good.
Labels are for food, America… canned food.