Is your credit union emo, screamo or techno?

I love music. I’m fairly open-minded about it, too. Except maybe for traditional country. The twang ain’t my thang, if you know what I mean. Not only do I love music, I like to think I know a lot about it. From classical to rock to punk to alternative, I’ve had favourite groups and artists in each category. In fact, many of them influence the other, as this humorous clip shows.

But I met my match recently. Here’s my story:

“What’s that, a mixed CD?” my fourteen-year-old daughter Taylor asks as I'm driving her to the bus stop.

“Yeah. I bought a few songs last night,” I say.

“Wow, I never figured you for emo,” She says.

“Uhhh... what’s emo?”

“It’s short for emotional. It’s a kind of music.”

“Emotional is a kind of music?”

“Yeah. And a fashion style.”

“What kind of fashion would be emo?”

"Kinda like gloves with no fingers, bangs in the face, maybe a chain or two. Sometimes the guys wear the girl pants."

“But that sounds like goth.” I protest, positive I had my goth down.

“No, goth is more... hardcore, I guess you could say. Most of the time it's ALL black and a LOT more chains. Most of the time there's spiked jewelry too. 'Emo' kids are usually a lot louder, from my experience, than the goths kids."

“Oh.” I say. Can you hear my ego being taken down a notch? As I pause to reflect on this development a Green Day song comes on. Ahh, familiar  territory. I saw them twice, I know them!

“Green Day is punk though.” I say with confidence.

“No, Green Day is happy hardcore, maybe even political hardcore if you're only talking about their latest album.”

Can you feel my universe tilting??

“Punk is old." Taylor continues. "Almost nobody is real punk anymore. Not even on The Punk Show on Much Music.”


“But Alexisonfire is punk, aren’t they?” I ask.

“No, they’re screamo.”

Screamo!? Where did screamo come from? I’m going into shock.

"What is screamo?" I ask.

“You know, bands that having screaming somewhere in the song. Screamo.”

I pull up to Taylor’s bus stop and put the car into park. I turn to look at her very seriously. “Okay, you need to make me a list. I want  every kind of music you know on it, and an example of the artist that  plays it. I can't be out of the loop like this!”

“OK.” She says, hopping out of the car confident in her thorough knowledge of today’s music scene.

I don't know if it's just my daughter, but I'm amazed at the length today's youth apparently goes to categorize music. It shows that it doesn't matter how old you are or what it is, people need to put things into categories as a way to define those things and how it relates back to them. If a band is categorized as "screamo" a certain group of people will either like or dislike them, depending on their musical preferences.

It's scary to go out on a limb to categorize yourself that way as a credit union, and yet some do to a certain extent. Vancity is the "environmental credit union" and Coast Capital is the "free chequing" credit union, to put a simplistic spin on their positioning. To some people those positions will be relevant and meaningful. To others, they will not be as important as that bank that stays open late. But there it is again, another position; the bank that stays open late.

What kind of credit union are you? If you don't know, consider what kind of credit union you want to be? But after you answer that, you must answer this: What kind of credit union CAN you be?

Here is Taylor’s verbatim e-mail about music genres as she and her immediate friends know them. It includes her thoughtful disclaimer at the beginning. Youth marketers take note: Taylor represents Generation Y.

A LITTLE NOTE BEFORE YOU READ: These are soley based on my opinion and the opinions of my group of friends. Every different person has a different definition of each genre. Also, when I say 'hardcore' I mean loud and aggresive kind of. And when I say kind of, I mean it is.
And this symbol -->  -_-'  is a face with an [anime] sweat drop. It means basically 'Why did I even mention this?' just with a smiley instead of words. Because smileys are cooler. ;D
Definitions are after the genre, and an example of a band/singer is in the brackets.
Emo: Emotional lyrics in a song. Kinda like breakup music or just really sad music if you don't know what emotional music is. To be emo, your music depends on the lyrics alone. You can have heavy metal music, but still have emo lyrics and be emo. (Hawthorne Heights, and a specific song could be 'Ohio Is For Lovers'.
Goth/Metal: Most of the time, goth and metal are the same thing. Most, if not all, goth bands are metal, while most metal bands aren't always goth. Usually a lot of heavy guitars and deep screaming. (Marilyn Manson would be a good goth example, while System Of A Down is considered more metal.)
Rock: Now a days, rock isn't glam, like KISS was. It's more edgy. There's more guitar, and more hardcore lyrics. (Breaking Benjamin)
Alternative: I don't really know how to explain this, so I looked it up in the dictionary: *employing or following nontraditional or unconventional ideas, methods, etc.; existing outside the establishment: an alternative newspaper; alternative lifestyles; listening to alternative music.* This genre basically applies to every single band then.  -_-'
Acoustic: Songs that are done with only acoustic guitar. (City & Colour)
Death Metal: Kinda like... metal, but a lot more intense, if you know what I mean. (Lamb Of God)
Hardcore: Loud and aggresive. (Three Days Grace)
Happy Hardcore: Hardcore music, just happier. (Green Day)
Reggae: Music that has a hip-hop like beat, but a techno vibe and music. (K-Os)
Hip-Hop: Like, the girly version of rap. Less rapping, more singing, usually rap tunes and beats and these feature a lot of other celebrities. (Missy Elliot)
Pop: Happy beats and upbeat lyrics. The exact opposite of goth and metal. (N*Sync, Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears... etc.)
Rock: Not metal, but not pop or screamo. In between. (Three Days Grace)
Blues: You should know what the Blues are.
Indie: Bands/artists that are not signed to major recording labels. These bands don't usually have a website, they usually just use a MySpace or LiveJournal. (Mortality Fading)
Punk: Like emo, but a lot less depressing, and more peppy. Again, bands are usually being placed here because of the ways they dress. (Good Charlotte)
Brit Pop: British pop music. (Coldplay or the Arctic Monkeys)
R & B: Like hip-hop, but usually no rap. (Ciara)
Soul: I'm pretty sure soul is gospel or religious music. If it's not, then it's kinda like Zen music. Music for the soul. I don't know any gospel or 'Zen' bands.
Rap: People rap along with music and beats. That's about it. (Fifty Cent and Snoop Dog)
Techno: Lots of keyboards, keytars and computer sounds. (Lemon Demon is very techno. All of their songs are mostly computer generated.)
Goth: Really dark and deep songs. Sometimes a bit scary. Most of the time, goth and metal are the same things. Most, if not all, goth bands are metal, while most metal bands aren't always goth. Usually a lot of heavy guitars and deep screaming. (Lamb of God or Marilyn Manson.)
World: This mostly applies to a group of songs from around the world or from different cultures.
Screamo: Songs where there is screaming. Usually at least 3/4 of the bands songs have to have screaming in them to be classified as a 'screamo' band. (Alexisonfire or The Used.)
JRock: Japanese rock music. (Orange Range)
JPop: Japanese pop music. Don't know any Japanese rock or pop bands, but it's basically the same as above, just Japanese people and lyrics.


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