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MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 81: TIM MCGRAW

Influence is a funny thing. It’s a topic that, by all accounts, is very, very subjective. Something or someone that you may believe to be influential, for either your own life or for the wider world, either at a national level or at a global level; may in fact be regarded by myself or by someone else as not influential at all, and perhaps superfluous. When we’re speaking about influence, we’re usually speaking about people and the mark they’ve made on human history, for either good or bad, and the impression that they’re destined to leave us all when they die. Sure, you can measure popularity by the numbers- if it’s a music artist, then by number of albums sold or songs streamed, or even twitter followers or hit radio singles; or if its an actor then number of movies starred in or number of Golden Globe or Academy Awards won. Influence, on the other hand…. Well that’s measured by…that’s measured by… well what is it measured by? Number of lives impacted after watching a movie or listening to a song? How would you determine the magnitude of the impact and whether the direct impact of a song or an album on a person is life changing or not though? Did the song save them from death or give them a sense of direction or purpose? Or is a measure the number of people directly inspired by that artist, so much so that a person considers said artist a role model and someone they look up to? How about during an unforeseen tragic circumstance, a song from left field, by an artist one would never imagine or think they’d ever listen to, inspires and comforts and heals, and brings them back from the brink, from depression and from hurt and pain unimaginable. Is this artist influential to that person? If the artist has had little sales and hardly any radio hits, but has changed lives for the better, and has released maybe the ‘theme song’ for someone’s marriage or graduation or something like that- are they influential? Maybe… maybe not. But regardless, don’t you reckon influence is now a bit grey and dependent on a variety of factors that can change as they days, months, years progress?

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MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 26: FAITH HILL

Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve gained a bit of insight over these last few months. And it is this- there is no pattern to how I listen to my music, or rather, what genre of music that I like. Even when I was enjoying a lot of CCM during my younger days, I’d listen to a wide variety of styles- rock, pop, worship, acoustic, folk, singer-songwriter…basically anything that wasn’t screamo. Now here as I branch out into different music styles and appreciate music in a general sense of the word, I see the exact same thing- virtually no pattern as to how I enjoy my music, or what I do listen to. Phil Collins, prominent in the 1980s, delivers to us an eclectic mix of pop-rock mixed with a high energy drum-beat undertone, while Kelly Clarkson is your traditional pop-rock with an inspirational edge in there. Owl City is close enough to EDM that I did embark upon, while Andrew Peterson utilised a lot of acoustics and focussed a lot on the lyrical side of things. Add to that the hard rockers of Skillet and DC Talk, and the ever poignant and motivational Tenth Avenue North; and you see that my musical tastes have broadened much over the weeks and months ahead. That is, until I’ve searched deeper into the patterns behind my very own choices for these blog posts thus far. There is indeed a pattern. Out of 26 artists I’ve decided to write about thus far, quite a fair number (5) are of the country variety. Yes, there, I’ve said it. Unknowingly, and maybe even unintentionally, I’ve favoured country music ahead of basically every other music genre thus far, inclusive of this artist I’m about to delve into today- Faith Hill. And there’s nothing wrong with country. Far from it. In fact, upon listening to music time and time again this year, I’ve noticed that country music in particular tend to wear their hearts on their sleeves a lot more, and that’s ok. Never have I initially thought that I would resonate a lot of country music, yet I have. Artists like Carrie Underwood, Martina McBride, The McClymonts, Shania Twain, and now Faith Hill, have all influenced the genre of country over the years, and by and large, have shaped what music is currently today as well. Maybe not so much The McClymonts, but considering that they are indeed an Australian country trio, and they have been charting top honours for best country band every year since their release of their debut album 12 years ago, makes their inclusion very much more settled and certain. Nevertheless, here I am with another post discussing Faith Hill and her music- and to be honest, I don’t really know much about her life…and maybe that’s a good thing. All I know is that she’s married to country artist Tim McGraw, released 8 studio albums, and is now declared one of the best country artists at the moment.

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