Given the recent intersections of electoral politics and popular music, where Cardi B discusses democratic socialism with Bernie Sanders and Toby Keith plays for the Trump inauguration, it might seem natural to map genres onto the nation's partisan divide. Politicians, pundits, and casual observers tend to overgeneralize about how Republican “red state” voters listen to country music, while pairing “blue state” Democrats with, well, anything else—pop, rock, R&B, or hip-hop. Granted, no genre holds an intrinsic alignment with any political party, yet these caricatures of taste and partisanship persist, particularly when it comes to country music and Republican conservatism.

Peter La Chapelle's latest book, I'd Fight the World, challenges those...

You do not currently have access to this content.