I’m generally a happy person, so when I listen to music, I want music that, at a minimum, does not drain my happiness.
Until recently, I put a great deal of stock in ‘styles’ of music or ‘types’ of music I liked or didn't like. Something like “I hate country” or “I hate disco”, and I would use these 'opinions' to guide my music selection. But this approach is often informed merely by peer pressure or the ever fickle culture and is so insufficient as to almost always miss the point.
What is most important is my heart, the furnace of my soul and source of all my outward action, including my mood and attitude. Obviously, my heart’s health is primarily dependent on being happy in the Lord each day and then, as the day goes on, I will encounter stuff that either aids my happiness or doesn’t, like music.
That said, I’ve decided that ‘genres’ of music is just not enough information alone for picking music and I suppose that's not really groundbreaking. But the motive is the happiness of my soul no matter what the alleged 'genre'. Where I can get fooled is by the memories that some music evokes and sometimes that's enough to trick you into 'liking' a tune, but not because you really like it, but because it reminds you of a time or a place or people. And that's not the point.
The point is, does the music cooperate with my current happiness or drain me of it?
Now, what's really interesting is my wife wrote about this very topic on her blog today and neither of us knew what the other was doing!
Stuff like that makes me happy, too!