July 13, 2003

There Ain't No Such Thing As World Music!

So I got a new iPod, see? And I'm ripping CDs onto my computer to download to the iPod. And when I rip the CDs, iTunes goes and queries CDDB for the track titles and similar information. One of things CDDB tracks is the so-called "genre".

A digression: when did "genre" stop referring to the form of the work (short story, novel) and start referring to the content (mystery, science fiction, romance)?

Now, Jane and I have a considerable amount of Irish, Scottish, and English traditional music on CD. And somehow, when I put a Planxty CD or a Silly Wizard CD into the slot, CDDB comes back and tells me that it's "World" music.

There ain't no such thing as "world" music, people. It's simply a term that record stores use so that you can see from across the room where to find the music that's sorted under its country of origin because they don't know where else to put it. Beyond that, it's not a useful designation.

Posted by Will Duquette at July 13, 2003 02:01 PM

Deb said:

Hey, I saw that category in Best Buy when I was trying to calm down from dealing with the 15 yo geek and it immediately reminded me of the Manilow/Coke commercial in the 70's---I'd like to teach the world to sing, in perfect harmony!!!!