Growing up in Texas, I have always been a fan of artists like Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings, and while I am certainly not trying to perpetuate a stereotype, I do have to admit that one of my favorite pastimes is to listen to country music.

I think that country music gets a bad rap by most people. I think that a lot of people think of it as being too hokey, or in some cases, too depressing. It seems that out of all genres of music, it is country that is the most popular to make fun of, but it is also the most popular type of music in the country, period. I read a report recently that said that there are more country music stations that any other kind of music stations in the country.

I love to listen to country music for a number of reasons. First and foremost, country music songs, for the most part, tell a very interesting story. One of my favorite country songs is “The Highwayman,” written by Jimmy Webb. The version I like is performed by Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Waylon Jennings and Johnny Cash.

The song was inspired by a dream Webb had while staying in a hotel in London about being a British highwayman. Every time that song comes on, I have to listen, and it always makes me feel good because it tells such a great story with four legends of the country music genre.

Another reason that I like to listen to country music is because most of the songs are fairly wholesome. In other words, they are not songs that I would not want my children to hear or would feel embarrassed playing in front of my parents. Of course, in my family, we are all big fans of country music.

One thing that I have always loved about country is that the music from it is so catchy. When you think about musicians using a guitar, fiddle, bass and drums and some of the music they are able to create with those instruments, it is truly amazing. I think one of the most memorable songs of all time is “A Country Boy Can Survive,” by Hank Williams, Jr., which is performed largely by an acoustic guitar!

One reason that I have always loved to listen to country music is that I have gotten the opportunity to watch my children grow up and fall in love with it, and actually ask for country music CDs for Christmas and their birthdays. While other kids are asking for Hannah Montana and Justin Timberlake, my kids want George Strait and Trisha Yearwood.

I will probably continue to listen to country music until the day that I die. I know that a lot of people don't like it, or at least think they don't, but I would recommend just listening to a few songs, and see if it doesn't start to grow on you. You might just be surprised.