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Why music snobs should get off their high horses

Max Szyc | Fulcrum Contributor

Illustration by Brennan Bova

It’s happened to me and it’s happened to you. I was sitting in the lunchroom at work, minding my own business, and suddenly, my co-worker, who I’m not particularly fond of, sits down next to me and sees my iPod. He then demands to see my playlists, so reluctantly I hand over my iPod and he proceeds to scrutinize my library. After he shockingly proclaimed, “Dude, I don’t know any of these bands or artists, but your music sucks,” I wondered if I had met my first douchebag clairvoyant. Sadly, no. I had just encountered another run-of-the-mill music snob.

These self-proclaimed super cool dudes and dudettes don’t just listen to music—they live and breathe it. They spend a good chunk of their free time perusing the Internet, or whatever hip, musically inclined hotspot they frequent for new, unknown sounds. They’re cutting edge, but most importantly, they’re cool. You do not listen to their music. Therefore, you are not cool. It’s as simple as that. What these “seriously legit” music fans don’t seem to realize is that there are few people that actually enjoy this type of behaviour. Nobody wants to spend prolonged amounts of time with a person who flaunts their “superior” musical taste and then berates you for yours.

These arrogant folks can come in a variety of forms, all of whom may worship a different type of music. Whether it’s ‘80s art-pop, ‘90s post-hardcore, or early 2000s house music, if the opportunity arises, they will snob all over you with snarky, condescending comments. Anybody can be an elitist, regardless of whether their preferred music is obscure or mainstream. These people tend to be very passionate about their favourite artists or bands, which they may or may not listen to exclusively on vinyl. All it takes is you playing that new Carly Rae Jepsen and Owl City single at a barely audible level. If one of the music snobs is within earshot, he or she will tell you to get your act together.

These pretentious types tend to prey on the musical libraries of unsuspecting victims in order to assert themselves as dominant musical deities. They can either ridicule you for what you do have (“Both LMFAO albums?!”), what you don’t have (“Not a single Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra track?”), or what you should have (“Get rid of Nicki Minaj and trade her for Azealia Banks.”). And yes, even people who listen to nothing but mainstream artists can still slam you for having too little Taylor Swift and too much At the Drive-In on your favourite listening device.

Sorry, let me just pick up all those names that I dropped.

At the end of the day, if someone else’s musical tastes don’t synchronize with your own, then why not just move on and find someone else to socialize with? Different people listen to different music, and that’s all there is to it.