A lot of narrative songs and morality tales. Sold lots of records too.
Marty Robbins was one example of the western narrative songs. I think Kenny Rogers was more mainstream - though he still considered himself as a country artist.That's very much the American C&W genre along with John Ford westerns: great morality tales. Including the likes of Bob Wayne and Hank Williams III as the modern version of Outlaw Country.
Shame Kenny Rogers death is over shadowed by all of this shit. But my sister did send me a a Youtube link to Ruby Don't Take Your Love To Town as a reminder of my grandparents. Actually, my grandfather was more of a rock n' roll fan and also liked Jack Teagarden before the war.
That's a bit sad to hear, Jan!
Did you read them in childhood, or come to them later in life? That may well make a difference.
Because I loved them in childhood, I naturally have very fond memories of them (opening them on Christmas morning and reading them while lying on the rug next to the Christmas tree etc) and so that influences my feelings towards them.