Sister Rosetta Tharp was truly an original.
As for Motown - alongside the Stax label was part of the soundtrack of my yoof. It was great to dance to, dominating dances I went to in the 60s. They knew their market and in response created well-produced pop music. Their successors in many respects were ABBA.
I confess that I’m not a great fan of much of the output that is churned out under the banner of ‘pop’ but, there are one or two exceptions.
My family will sometimes tell you that I’m ‘a music snob’. For all that I have a broad taste, it has to be ‘good’. Folk is a genre where I can get seriously picky. I guess that my first exposure to ‘folk’ was through Peter, Paul and Mary and, Burl Ives on ‘Children’s’ Favourites’ and, ‘Two Way Family Favourites’ in the late 50s, early 60s. Then skiffle came along and gave me a broader experience. I even attended folk clubs back then. When I hear Mumford and Sons et al described as folk, I have to disagree. They are acoustic pop/rock. They’re fine and, I like them but, folk they ain’t!
I think that ‘your taste’ is ‘your taste’. It’s unique to you. I used to get rather annoyed with people who would denigrate any form of music they didn’t like. All music is valid. If you don’t take to it, don’t listen to it. Don’t condemn those people who do like it. I experienced a lot of that with the rise of Punk Rock and New Wave in the 70s. Many of my friends who, like me were into ‘serious Rock music’ dismissed Punk as naive, basic, and unpolished. To me rock had become too grand and imposing, pompous and, took itself far too seriously. They seemed to forget that Elvis Presley produced some incredible music with, a guitar, drums and bass in a studio, on a single track recording machine. This often took just a couple of hours. If they wanted the bass to be louder, they asked the bass player to stand closer to the microphone. By the 70s, artists were taking six or eight months to produce an album. Often there were so many multi-tracking overdubs and technical tricks that it was impossible to play the tracks live. Punk went back to basics. Like music for what it is.
Incidently, I mentioned Karl Jenkins and’The Armed Man’ earlier. I’m quite hacked off that, he’s coming to conduct the entire work live at Birmingham Symphony Hall in October and I can’t make it.
Sorry, I’m in soap box mode. It’s been a long day.