My Kind of Country

Country music from a fan's point of view since 2008

Goodbye time

For many years my love for country music was quite an isolated one, as I know very few people in my daily life who even like it. In 2008 I started to read The 9513, an excellent country music blog, and began chatting to other fans on the associated forum. One of the other members, J. R. Journey, invited me and two others, Razor X and Erik, to join him on a brand new blog at the beginning of 2009. That blog has been an enormous part of my life for the past ten years. The writing team has changed a bit over that time, currently consisting of myself, Jonathan Pappalardo and Paul Dennis who was previously a contributor of The 9513). One of the things which I was struck by when we started was how generous and welcoming other country music bloggers were.

Sadly, our time has coincided with the decline of real country music as a viable commercial genre, with the major labels putting out pop and rock music disguised as country, and ‘country’ radio having effectively been taken over by stealth. We have done our best to seek out what good music is still being made – and it is out there, plus delving into allied genres like bluegrass. Our weekly chart feature shows the contrast between the hits of years past and those of today all too graphically.

In the last couple of years it has become harder for all of us to find the time to contribute, and with regret we have decided that the time has come to call it a day. We would not have made it this far without you, the loyal readers. Not many of you comment, but we know you have kept on reading and, hopefully, enjoying our contributions. We intend to leave the blog up, so you still have the chance to revisit old posts, but there will be no new content after today.

I hope we have reminded you of, and introduced you to, some great music, through our selection of Spotlight Artists, new music reviews and classic rewind video clips over the past ten and a half years. We have produced over 7000 posts, and most of you read the blog scrolling down the main page. Over the past decade, the post most specifically searched-for was one of Paul Dennis’s series of Favorite songs of the 1980s. We will miss writing for you all, and hope you don’t miss us too much.

15 responses to “Goodbye time

  1. shahad turki alshammari June 30, 2019 at 7:46 am

    That is so sad. I have been following your blog probably around 2011 when I didn’t know much about the history and I wanted to learn from authentic sources and people who genuinely love country music. I have always been passionate about country music, and I’m probably the only one in my country who is (Kuwait; Middle East) but I love it so much, not a day goes by without me listening to some country. Your blog has introduced me and taught me about so many great singers and songs so thank you so much from the bottom of my heart. I highly appreciate all the hard work and time that went into writing the posts. Much love from Kuwait. I will definitely be visiting the blog from time to time to browse through old posts.

  2. Razor X June 30, 2019 at 8:16 am

    When J.R. Journey first approached me about writing for this blog, it seemed like a dream come true — to be given a forum and carte blanche to talk about my favorite subject. As a lifelong country music fan, the possibilities seemed endless — and for a long time, they were, but as the years went by, there was less and less to write about. Eventually we began to run out out of spotlight artists to cover and it became a challenge not to be repetitive. I fully understand your reasons to call it a day, having reached that same point a little sooner than the rest of you. Still, it it makes me sad to see something that was such a important part of our lives for so many years come to an end.

    The best part of writing for MKoC was the opportunity to work with such a fine writing staff. I am truly blessed and honored to have had the chance to get to know J.R., Lisa, Jon and Paul and to consider them friends. Ending the professional aspect of those relationships was the hardest part of my decision to retire from the blog 18 months ago.

    My sole regret about the entire experience was that we weren’t able to say that we were leaving country music in a better state than we found it in. When we first began I knew the genre was in the midst of a rough patch, but writing about the music we all loved seemed like a good way to ride out the storm. It never occurred to me then that a decade later things would only be worse.

    I hope that Lisa, Jon and Paul will now be able to get some well deserved rest and always be proud of the results of their labor of love.

  3. Paul W Dennis June 30, 2019 at 9:51 am

    Like many of the older half of the baby boom generation, I was a latecomer to the joys of the internet. When I first arrived in 2003, there still existed a number of music blogs around where you could get free downloads of many pre-1980 country albums, so for the first year I spent my time downloading old albums (about 75% of which I had on vinyl). As I suspected at the time I was downloading, most of those blogs are gone, victims of RIAA and various ISP witch hunts.

    I would, of course, read various news and sports blogs – but then someone turned me onto The 9513, at the time the best (and in my opinion still the best-ever) of the country music blogs. At some point, I communicated with Brady Vercher and started submitting articles.

    As I alluded, I am in the older half of the baby boomers having gone through the various stages that one travels through in life. I also suspected that Brady, the only country music blogger I ever met personally (he was in the Orlando area for some reason and we met for lunch), would need to get serious about career and family and jettison his blog.

    After that, I was contacted another country music blog (Engine 145) for whom I briefly wrote, and in August 2006 I wrote briefly for Country Universe. I still read Country Universe but their focus is much more on newer country music which was getting progressively less country and I really did not seem to fit in with what they were doing.

    Enter Rob (Razor X) Horgan. Around April 2011, Rob asked if I would like to join him, Occasional Hope and J.R. Journey in writing for their blog, which I had been reading since it was founded in 2008. Jonathan Pappalardo would join a few months later.

    Although I’ve never personally met any of the staff at MKoC, I regard them as friends (or people who would become friends, if given proximity and opportunity). One of the nice things about this blog is that I have never seen any of the staff sniping at other staff members. The writers at MKoC represented a wide range of tastes and interests and yet connected to the common goal of producing a quality blog. Our monthly Spotlight Artists are a case in point. I am sure that each of us has written reviews about Spotlight artists about whom we really didn’t give a flip, and yet the individual reviews have been fair and objective. I have added several artists to my collection based on what J.R. Journey; Occasional Hope, Razor X and, Jonathan have written – they have not led me astray in their reviews.

    Ten years is a long time in the life of a blog, and invariably other matters arise that draw ones energies away from keeping the blog going. Thus we have reached the end of the line. I wish my colleagues the best of luck and hope that they will stay in touch. I also hope that one day Country Music will undergo another ‘New Traditionalists’ revival. Until then you may catch me at a bluegrass festival or listening to recorded music.

    Meanwhile – kindly keep it country and remember Bob Wills is still the king!

  4. Ken June 30, 2019 at 11:38 am

    Very sorry to hear this news.

    I’ll truly miss seeing new posts regularly arriving in my inbox. I know that this has been a labor of love for the staff. I’ve enjoyed reading intelligent, thoughtful reviews and the subsequent comments those posts would elicit. It’s always interesting to hear other perspectives on the music that I’ve loved for so many years.

    Also appreciated the opportunity to add my two cents now & then. This blog has been a great reason to blow the dust off the vintage albums on my shelf and to take a fresh listen. Also a great opportunity to learn about newer acts that continue to carry the flag for REAL country music despite being ignored by the soulless Nashville corporate music cloning machine and the rock/pop weasels that have hijacked county radio.

    Thank you for giving true country fans like me a great platform to discuss and to celebrate authentic country music for the past decade. Best wishes to all wherever your journey’s may take you next.

  5. Trey June 30, 2019 at 8:43 pm

    Well this sucks. Take care. Appreciate all you e over the years.

  6. Aussie country girl July 1, 2019 at 6:25 am

    I’m sad that this blog has come to an end. I’ve enjoyed contributing to it over the the years. I love all kinds of country music, but in the last few years there’s little “Country” about country music. I live in Australia and our country music hasn’t yet been taken over by corporate players who care very little for the music and are only concerned about the bottom line of the record labels and radio stations. Thanks for the great content over the the years, even if I haven’t agreed with everything that’s been written, I’ve found it very enjoyable. All the best to you all .

  7. Casey July 1, 2019 at 9:07 am

    I’ve gotten a lot of enjoyment from your blog. I subscribed to your feed via Feedly and never missed a post. Sorry to see you leave. Take special care. ~casey

  8. Tyler Pappas July 1, 2019 at 1:50 pm

    This is very sad. I will miss the posts and I appreciate all the hard work that all the writers did. You’ve impacted my life for the better.

  9. youngwomanscreek July 1, 2019 at 9:08 pm

    Sorry to see that new posts will end, but much appreciation and effort for the existing content. You covered lots of ground and some excellent music (along with some to be avoided). Best wishes to all.

  10. lovelessfan July 2, 2019 at 8:30 am

    I truly appreciate all that you have done here. You have honored the music we love by looking back to the performers that helped form our enthusiasm for the genre and sought out new artists worthy to carry the music forward. You all have done so with devotion to your craft and reverence for this music. Thank you kindly.

  11. Occasional Hope July 2, 2019 at 2:37 pm

    Thank you for all your kind comments.

  12. JT July 6, 2019 at 2:51 pm

    Thanks for the work on the blog. I have learned about several great songs through this site, and I really enjoyed looking at the weekly chart.

    As for the current state of pop music, I don’t think it is only country music that is trying to find its way.

    God bless you all on your next ventures.

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  14. countryopinionblog July 6, 2019 at 8:12 pm

    Best wishes, and never say never. Who knows, maybe the itch to write will return ?

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