Popular Music Coverage

Article excerpt

To the Editor:

While The World & I has been publishing articles on country music about once a year, this magazine has yet to acknowledge the existence of hip- hop music and culture. I am not a great fan of hip-hop music, but I am very interested to learn more about why this music has become so successful, particularly among young people. Whether we like it or not, hip-hop has transformed the culture of America. In 1998 hip-hop music outsold country music, which previously had been America's top-selling format. That's why The World & I, a magazine that aims to be a chronicle of our changing times, should no longer ignore hip-hop--even if this means that there will be less articles on country music.

Claude Aubert Lanham, Maryland

Arts editor Stephen Henkin replies:

Although Mr. Aubert is well meaning in his suggestion to replace coverage of country music with that of hip-hop, I do not think that this is the best solution to the problem he presents. Here is some information supporting the coverage of country music "once a year," and probably more often.

First, it is by far the most widely listened to form of music in America, with almost 2,500 radio stations formatted to play exclusively country music, followed by contemporary/pop, with about 1,250 stations. …