I don't think it is right to associate some music genre to be absolutely manly because music is a patrimony of humanity. Even heavy metal that is very manly have some woman around. There are, of course, music directed towards man in a lot of different styles. If you need a manly music as reference for kids today, it is probably better to check something old, a big hit from the last century or even local traditional songs.
Uncle Tupelo. that is all.
Manly music is anything that gets you going, gives you energy, and goes well with alcohol.
Modern (pop) country is fail on all counts. Rap/hip-hop doesn't qualify as music. It's just talking to a heavy beat.
Classical(of the more percussive sort, such as Wagner), metal, hard rock(not the modern poppy crap), and some older country are the musics that stir a man's soul.
Just happened across this post while surfing for thoughts for a play list I was creating. I didn't really look through other posts, so if what I post is a duplicate - my apologies!
The first and foremost masculine music is the Blues, esp Delta Blues. People like BB King, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, Joe Bonamassa, etc are all definitively masculine.
Next thought I had was old school Rockabilly - Dion, Elvis, Chuck Berry, Johnny Cash, etc.
Also, Ray Charles, Little Richard, and James Brown stuff from the 50's & 60's all qualify.
Most of the songs on this list... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZH8zTzjQpE&feature=related
And, last but definitely not least - James Brown "It's a Man's World" and Muddy Waters "Mannish Boy"
Great post, Josh. Usually anything labelled "classic" is pleasing to the ear and works; classic rock, classic r&b, classic country, etc... and requires some form of concentration and reflection. Anything with a great bassline and horns plus great lyrics will always get my attention.
I avoid anything White Stripes or their offspring. To me that's the equivalent of putting an old transistor radio next to your ear and cranking it up all the way. Screeech! Even rap is more heartfelt and thought out.
As far as 'manly' music, Sinatra always works. As does Waylon Jennings.
Get back to the roots. The Blues, a true American music (from the opinion of an Australian), often speaks volumes about the troubles which many young men battle: depression, loneliness, prejudice, lack of respect, lack of opportunities and so on. Other great musical genres include folk music, country and western. Basically anything that's real and has a human feel to it. For this purpose I would suggest The Rolling Stones and The Who.
A great lyric from The Who song ANYWAY, ANYHOW, ANYWHERE sums up what it means to be a young man:
"Nothing gets in my way
Not even locked doors
Not gonna be following lines
That been laid before
I get along anyway I dare
Anyway, anyhow, anywhere."
I grew up listening to a lot of punk music. Currently it seems many of the singer/songwriters from a lot of my current favorite punk bands of been playing a lot of acoustic and even folk-ish music. Their raw voices give it a soul that I really love.
Music on this one starts around the 1:00 mark (Brian Fallon from the Gaslight Anthem)
Chuck Ragan from Hot Water Music. For this song he tends to bring opening bands up to play with him regardless if they know the song or not. You can't deny the manliness of his shredded voice.
Someone has already said it but Neil Young is definitely a manly man.
I'd put Bruce Springsteen up there as manly music too.
personally I think the society around classic instrumental jazz fits the mold of a real man. An example in my city there was recently 2 concerts last week. One was a jazz concert featuring great jazz guitarist like Howard Alden. The second was a red hot chili peppers concert. My father and I went to the jazz concert and my sister and brother in law went to the RHCP concert. The difference was amazing.
The jazz concert was full of men dressed well very respectable no hoot and hollering light clapping after solos but up most respect.
From what I hear about the RHCP concert there were people screaming dirty looking people drunks people without shirts, fights and other things like this.
I love smooth instrumental Jazz music, go to concerts, and restaurants with that kind of music and took a few Jazz guitar lessons when I was going through school. The people I find in the smooth jazz classic style of music tend to fit the mold of the "real man" that we discuss on this forum. Respectable, Dressed well, care about appearance, calm, and respectable.
I dont particularly like the RHCP's, i've seen them at a festival and they were rubbish but the way you described that gig sounds much more fun than the jazz thing...