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Grunge: The Musical Revolution that Changed America Essay examples

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GRUNGE: AN INTRODUCTION Music in America in the late 1980s saw a revolution in the form of a whole new genre, which would later be known as ‘grunge’. It is perhaps one of America’s most notable contributions to the music world. Grunge originated in Seattle and spread through the United States over the 1990s. It also influenced the international music scene, inspiring artists, and creating a huge world-wide fan base. The music was inspired by punk rock, but had more edgy riffs coupled with emotive, sometimes heavy lyrics. This type of music reached out to and addressed an oppressed and often abused audience. The angry musical riffs, paired with lyrics that most young Americans could relate to, or had even experienced, made grunge instantly…show more content…
It also did not share the same lyrical themes as punk and metal. Whether the theme was love or just general experiences, grunge lyrics usually communicated negative experiences and emotions (Strong 18, 19).
GRUNGE: CULTURAL SIGNIFICANCE The time of emergence of the ‘grunge-era’ is of great significance. It was during this time that America saw several changes under the policies of President Ronald Reagan. People began to feel frustrated at the rising levels of poverty. Students were dissatisfied with the minimized financial aid they were granted. In her paper ‘Grunge and Blues, A Sociological Comparison: How Space and Place Influence the Development and Spread of Regional Musical Styles’, Tara Talley states, “… many young Americans in the late eighties and early nineties did indeed feel disenchanted, isolated, and somewhat hopeless. The popular music of the time did little to express this mindset” (Talley 232). During a time when there was a general feeling of listless frustration, grunge gave the youth a voice. It showed them that they were not alone in their resentment toward those that kept them down, and that their insecurities for the future were shared by thousands. Unlike previous sub-genres within rock, grunge was not glamorous or showy. It was not ‘cool’; in fact, it professed that it was alright to be ‘un-cool’. Grunge was a celebration of the individual, and it spoke out against a world where the youth felt pressured
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