Monday, June 1, 2009

'The Nashville Effect' Part Two: More Than Country, but Not That Much

Posted By on Mon, Jun 1, 2009 at 11:43 AM

click to enlarge Where's "Hipster Bullshit" on this list?
  • Where's "Hipster Bullshit" on this list?

As I mentioned the other day, Richard Florida posted a blog entry over at the Atlantic called "The Nashville Effect," which among other things says that "[Nashville has] turned into the Silicon Valley of the music business, combining the best institutions, the best infrastructure, and the best talent." Not content to just suck up the musical talent of the world, "Nashville has become the center for multiple musical genres from country and gospel to rock and pop, attracting top talent from across the United States and the globe."

Hold the phone! Daniel Silver counters that sure, there are "multiple genres" in Nashville, but it's not really that diverse: "Nashville is still far from an omnivore's delight. It's more of a feast for those with a voracious appetite for country, Christian, acoustic, etc: after you get past those 8 genres in which Nashville specializes, you drop pretty far and pretty fast through the rest, resulting in an average rank of about 63."

For his rebuttal, Silver uses the, uh, sure-fire method of looking at band MySpace pages and collecting location and genre information. Seems a bit flawed to me. A quick perusal of local acts shows that flaw in action. Chris Crofton and the Alcohol Stuntband are "Crunk" (Nashville rank: 28), for example. (And from Outer Mongolia.) Those Darlins are "2-Step" (Nashville rank: 58). Taylor Swift is "Country" (Nashville rank: No. 1). Not exactly bulletproof.

Read more: "How Cosmopolitan Is Nashville?" (Via Creative Class.)

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