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Let's talk about sex

Country Musings by Robert Loy, March 2007

I came across a very interesting statistic in the Harper's Index, the home of interesting (albeit often terrifying) statistics. It said that the chances that a hip-hop fan has had 5 or more sexual partners in the last 5 years are 2 in 5, while the chances that a country music fan has had similar carnal counts are only 1 in 67.

Maybe it shouldn't have, but that stat knocked me for a loop. How could that be? Why were the rappers having so much sex while we country folk were having none?

Then I thought that maybe it had to do with the fact that hip-hop is for a younger crowd, and younger people, being less likely to be in a committed relationship, are going to be more promiscuous.

Except I'm not sure that's true anymore. I see a lot of young country fans, and hip-hop's been around long enough that some of its aficionados are sporting gray hair under their backwards baseball caps.

So I thought some more and this is what I came up with: Music fans tend to emulate their musical idols. Rap fans want to be players like Snoop Dogg, who makes no secret of his love of porn, even hosting and writing the music for a porn video.

On the other hand, the king of country music and the guy we're all trying to be like is probably the happily-married Tim McGraw. And after all, the statistic was about sexual partners, not sexual acts. Maybe we're having as much or more sex as the hip-hop crowd but we're having it all with Faith Hill - well, our own personal Faith Hill, if you follow me.

(If I'm right and music affects peoples' passionate propensities, then things were probably a lot different back in the bad old days. There aren't many songs that glorify adultery in country music on modern country radio. I wonder what statistics were for country music fans when we were trying to be like the guys who prayed "Now, I lay me down to cheat" and had girlfriends who walked on by and waited on the corner, when we were all encouraged to enjoy third-rate romances with Margie at the Lincoln Park Inn.)

Or maybe I'm overthinking it.

Maybe it's as simple as this: Country music is so enjoyable that people actually listen to the music and hip-hop is so horrendous that people would rather do anything - even bump uglies with a veritable stranger - than have to listen to it.