So What Does The Music World Need Right Now?

DC1

Member
Messages
15,385
What's wrong with art-fans having a fantasy world?
Not a thing except where that fantasy asserts itself as a model that anyone should actually aspire to. It's kind of like the "guitarist vs. guitarist" fantasy world that no pro actually lives in.


I see nothing wrong with art that appeals only to a very small 'in the know' audience. It's just one more flavor in the rich smorgasbord any thriving culture needs.
Me too. But it is a gross misunderstanding to think that is what the artist wants in most cases, nor is it necessarily more honorable than any other. Worst of all, if it is any good, the audience inevitable grows.



History is currently telling us otherwise



Who was talking about calculated outrage?
We're going to disagree there. "Transgressive art" has utterly exhausted itself dashing about smearing poo, flailing at symbols and stuffing things up its bum, trying to find some rube to shock, while melody, harmony, counterpoint & rhythm are about the only place left to go for the rebellious.

dc
 

isfahani

Member
Messages
487
Today, people from all over the world at the click of a mouse can hear music from all over the world. Lot of us older people may not be aware of or check out the music from places in Africa, Middle East, Indonesia, Mexico etc., but many of the younger kids are and do. That is a bunch of "new" (to us Westerners) and different musical ingredients to add to the mix. If you think about it, the ultimate market for popular music is a worldwide audience. A music that successfully weaves in the influences of everyone so that it appeals to everyone in some way. Or at least if not like can at least relate to the music. That is a hell of a gumbo.
Right. And Wrong. See, for those of us westerners that were around studying and playing the stuff before "World Music" was a catchphrase, seeing the amount of exposure that all those different kinds of music is able to get now is great, while there's one big problem with this gumbo approach, it's like when white men started to cross over into reggae and didn't get it right - that was 30+ years ago and I still see 'dem' doing the honky reggae... If you're going this route then FFS please bother to take the time to study it before grafting it onto whatever else you have on hand. I beg you. Some of the worst offenders in this category are the 'producers' that think they're adding ethnic flavor by farming in samples, while all they are doing is furthering the homogenization of said world music.

I'd also like to see a return to the days when instrumental music was the dominant genre. After almost 2 decades of ****** rap and country pop where the only things left from the country are the boots and the hat, I wish people would STFU already.
 

KRosser

Member
Messages
14,314
Me too. But it is a gross misunderstanding to think that is what the artist wants in most cases, nor is it necessarily more honorable than any other.
Of course - but I would never say that.

We're going to disagree there. "Transgressive art" has utterly exhausted itself dashing about smearing poo, flailing at symbols and stuffing things up its bum, trying to find some rube to shock,
Again - who was talking about this? I wasn't

while melody, harmony, counterpoint & rhythm are about the only place left to go for the rebellious.
The last composer to creat an actual riot in a major concert hall was Steve Reich's 1973 Carnegie Hall premiere of "Four Organs", a piece so stubbornly tonal and rhythmic it drove the audience nuts.

Gotta love it...look at him now. Probably America's most internationally celebrated living composer.
 

redpill

Member
Messages
1,230
OK, here's a completely different (and likely unpopular) take: Music needs fewer musicians.

I don't mean it needs fewer people playing instruments, singing, and enjoying music. I mean it needs fewer people who aren't all that talented or called filling bars and coffee shops and A&R guy mailboxes. We are in a circumstance of MASSIVE entertainment overload in the developed world. The signal to noise ratio is shrinking. It doesn't surprise me that A&R operations go for the complete sure thing package - pretty, easy to listen to, unchallenging songs and people to sing them, preferably while dancing. The thousands upon thousands of 'meh' bands and songwriters out there has made the already risky premise of picking and marketing talent over image even more maddeningly difficult for the most conscientious exec. In other words, I think music would get better if we self-edited as a culture and stop crowding out the truly driven, talented, and creative with our 30 years-later Bad Company clone bands (and so on - not picking on that genre at all). :)

That failing...

A more local market for music. The more national and international the market becomes, the fewer musicians command more attention and more dollars from a wider and wider group of people. 60 years ago, each major city supported its own small high-end music community. Now, music is mostly consumed at a wider market level, and that narrows the focus of the business. If we're all listening to the same 100 acts, then only those 100 can make it. If we are listening to a different 100 acts in each nation, or better yet region, or better yet city, well - many more acts can make it. And that provides more opportunities for greatness and creative latitude.
 

DC1

Member
Messages
15,385
Of course - but I would never say that.
But a lot of others would and have said that there is some "art for art's sake" world we should all aspire to. Not only does little of this exist, little of it could exist unless it was just lousy. Quality work has a way of getting out of our little circles.




The last composer to creat an actual riot in a major concert hall was Steve Reich's 1973 Carnegie Hall premiere of "Four Organs", a piece so stubbornly tonal and rhythmic it drove the audience nuts.

Gotta love it...look at him now. Probably America's most internationally celebrated living composer.
I much prefer Morten Lauridsen and one of my clients Peter Boyer, whose work Ellis Island just knocks my socks off. Take a look if you can.

Certain compositional elements do not guarantee quality music, but of course you know that.

Living without them is becoming less trendy however.

:BEER


dc
 

norumba

Member
Messages
694
Every sub genre has a sub genre now and there's plenty of fresh music being made for everyone. Very very few bands have a mass appeal anymore because instead of having 100 huge acts to choose from we have a million smaller ones.
+1, spot on.

this is now known in media theory circles as 'long tail distribution' -- Read "The Longer Long Tail" by Chris Anderson for a good analysis and explanation. It's a great read, and i think an essential one for musicians trying ot figure out the industry vectors at this stage (im about 1/2 way through it).

I also think this is why most major label pop music gets crappier and crappier, because the truly interesting work is circumventing the traditional model, leaving the majors having to offer up the worst dregs to the lowest common denominator to acheive the same profit margins at the economies of scale they operate at.

the niche markets now open via long tail distribution are at a much smaller scale, and how to monetize it effectively is another challenge. I think the economic sustainability for artists will vary widely, but as a consumer, im gald of the choices out there and i support the artists that i like.

Right. And Wrong. See, for those of us westerners that were around studying and playing the stuff before "World Music" was a catchphrase, seeing the amount of exposure that all those different kinds of music is able to get now is great, while there's one big problem with this gumbo approach, it's like when white men started to cross over into reggae and didn't get it right - that was 30+ years ago and I still see 'dem' doing the honky reggae... If you're going this route then FFS please bother to take the time to study it before grafting it onto whatever else you have on hand. I beg you. Some of the worst offenders in this category are the 'producers' that think they're adding ethnic flavor by farming in samples, while all they are doing is furthering the homogenization of said world music.

I'd also like to see a return to the days when instrumental music was the dominant genre. After almost 2 decades of ****** rap and country pop where the only things left from the country are the boots and the hat, I wish people would STFU already.
+1000 here on this point. cant add anything to that.

as to the money vs art debate, i gave that one up long ago. I also dont buy fully into the argument that if youre not doing music all the time , your work suffers. Surely, my work may be more on its game if i didnt have a day job, but neither am i dependent on having to play in crappy bars playing covers i dont like. I look at both as an equal distraction to developing the work that i want to do. i also sleep about 3 hours a night to get in the time necessary to keep the work at a decent level.

for me its about playing with enough conviction and integrity to make a difference in peoples hearts one heart a time. Ive been blessed when that happens now and then. Would i like for that to happen on a larger scale and have it pay my bills? Sure, but thats not the goal, and every time ive tried to make that the goal, the work inevitably suffered.

Its not balanced, but i just keep working on the work and trust that the balance will find whatever point it wants to. in the meantime im grateful for the response and opportunities that arise from time to time.
 

KPO

Member
Messages
264
When R&R came along ( 50ties/early 60ties) the jazzmarket died, lots of very skilled musicians ran out of work, they moaned about that just the way we do now. I did that also.

I was a fulltime promusician from about 1979 untill 1997, played in 3 different bands with recorddeals with major companies, did studiojobs etc, living my dream right?

I was forced to change course because studios I used to work in closed down, I went from about 150/160 gigs a year to 40/50,clubs closing etc.
At the age of 37 I was a far better, more experienced musician than I was
in my early 20ties, only making 30% of the money.
Don't seem fair right?

I changed course, working a dayjob, 32 ours a week at first, now 24, just to pay the basic costs of living, buying my creative freedom, recording and releasing my own music on my own terms, no big budget recordingdeals, just a modest mobile DAW setup, mixing at the kitchentable and never felt happier in my hole life.

Times change, consumers change, formats change ( where are all the fantastic bigbands gone?) economic rules change, the only thing that won't change is the fact that there are always people who wants to make music.
 

KPO

Member
Messages
264
In addition to my post above I want to share a story with you.

Back in 1975 I was a white longhaired pot smoking middleclasskid, 15 years old, obsessed by and living and breathing music, living in Holland.

One night I went to a bluesconcert, JB Hutto, black american bluessinger, playing really mean slideguitar.
JB Hutto, somewhere in his 60ties I guess, went on tour in Europe for the first time in his long hard life.
Here was this club, filled with about 400 longhaired white middleclass kids, deeply into blues, filled with romantic stories about Robert Johnson, Howlin Wolf etc.
Hutto entered the stage ( 1st gig of his european clubtour) couldn't believe what he saw before his own eyes, all this white hippiekids devotedly listening to him, while in his own backyard he did ****** roadhousegigs for little doormoney end a few drinks, doin' ****** dayjobs most of his life just to survive because allmost nobody in the USA cared **** about his music.

Hutto couldn't handle all that devotion and the endless amount of free drinks he suddenly could get his hands on, got completely drunk with a bizarre grin on his face all night.

The moral behind this story has allways kept me from having a big ego as a sometimes pretty succesfull musician and kept me with both feet on the ground.

Fact of the matter is that what is my most important thing in life, and for the majority of the guys on TGP, music, is not so important for the rest of the world, they don't care about tone, gigs recorddeals etc, it's just one of the many forms of entertainment no more no less.
 

johneeeveee

Member
Messages
1,613
I believe that the next musical revolution will occur from the ground up. It likely will not look like it did in the past. I don't know what the form will be yet but it won't be stadium tours and album sales, that's for sure.
It's already happened and in full swing. There are more unique, diverse and interesting bands touring and putting out music independently than ever before. This is a great time for music and the DIY ethic.
 

Gas-man

Unrepentant Massaganist
Messages
18,630
What the world needs now
Is a new Frank Sinatra
So I can get you into bed

-- Cracker
 

Wooley

Member
Messages
2,600
The "Music World" needs for the business to be taken out of it.

When artists are rewarded directly for the music they make and there is no middle-man taking the lion's share and deciding what is a safe investment for them, then art will return to music and even the masses will have good taste.
 

Alister

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,500
I don't know what "The Music World," capitalized or otherwise, even means.
It's very much like "The Economy" to me.

I'm probably just not smart enough to take the concept on.

But I do notice that "The Music World" to many of you is synonymous with the music business. Whether this business is dominated by dying corporations, or 'democratized" with a million "tail end" bands who are purportedly (or just assumedly) doing exciting and innovative stuff, the business model is still at the heart of all definitions.
Most of the musicians I know, whether the 20 year olds or the 60 years olds, still strive to be "stars," even if just locally. So ego is also a key ingredient, and perhaps eternal.
 

winstabull

Member
Messages
639
You can rearrange the whole world however you see fit, it still isnt going to change the fact that young girls like hannah montana and justin timberlake, etc etc. They simply don't care about 'your favorite band not getting enough credit'.

As long as the phrase 'daddy.... pleeeeeaaaaaseeeee' exists they will dominate the market.

For the rest of us, there is no way to circumvent the digital age. It's here. To continue witht the old business model means to adopt draconian measures to stamp out file sharing. We are talking about ISP's sniffing your internet traffic then reporting to the government what they find. I don't think anyone wants that.... Recorded music, 'the album', is dead as a revenue stream. It is now relegated to being a marketing tool.

Adapt. There needs to be a return to the thinking that seeing live music is the ultimate way to expirience music. It needs as much about being at the show/event as it is about the music. You cannot digitally copy the feeling of being in a room with 4000 like minded people listening to something awesome.
 

Elias Graves

Senior Member
Messages
1,837
Now, I did try to draw a distinction between the music world and the music business. The music business is that; a business. The music world is comprised of that business, the artists and the consumers.

The business, as we have known it, is what enabled groups like the Beatles, the Stones, Michael Jackson and the like to become what they were. There were a limited number of acts that "made it" and they were pushed, hyped and promoted by a very effective machine. In historical context, this is the anomaly. Many classical composers were "kept" by nobility. Many troupes simply traveled and gigged where they could. It wasn't until the advent of the music industry that we saw musicians making really big money.

That may have been an historical blip and musicians might end up back where they were a hundred years ago, trying to hawk their own music. This time, through the internet instead of on the road.

With this decentralized distribution and no single authority to "tell" you what is good, the days of million selling artists may be gone.

Can a case be made that if a truly unique and talented performer came along today hat he could "push through" on a scale of The Beatles or Elvis? Were those historical flukes that will never happen again?

Is it possible that a truly great artist will emerge through a groundswell of popular support from the grass roots? Is that unlikely?

As far as songwriting goes, there are some exceptionally talented ones out there. Unfortunately, you don't hear them in the mainstream channels.
 

spectreman

Member
Messages
1,124
I see an analogy between the state of the music business and the state of boxing.

For too many years, boxing relied on the Vegas casinos to fill arenas, but not putting on great fights only showcasing name fighters. Little of the talent was cultivated in the local communities because the money was in Vegas. With the combination of the downturn in the economy and the aging of these name fighters, boxing is left in possibly its worst state for the casual fan in modern history. Yes, there are the hardcore fans that continue to support the sport, but the mainstream coverage has all but disappeared and the sport has lost the casual fan.

The music business seemed to also fall into the same trap, taking the easy buck trying to prepackage and recycle artists. Music will have to get smaller before it is able to expand again. Besides U2 and the Stones (both who are in the RnR HOF) can sell out stadiums? Even arenas are getting harder to fill these days. We need acts that can be locally/regionally developed over years, and local radio stations and promotion that have the freedom to support the talent.

I also think bringing back the 'experience' of listening to music. It has become too portable and too convenient to listen to today. Rarely do you buy an album/CD/etc and put it on and listen from start to finish focusing solely on that piece of music. The medium of MTV in its early days changed that factor slightly because instead of listening to the stereo, you were listening and watching but still glued to the TV.

Of course there is more that is needed, but that is a start.
 

Solomon

Member
Messages
2,937
The "Music World" needs for the business to be taken out of it.

When artists are rewarded directly for the music they make and there is no middle-man taking the lion's share and deciding what is a safe investment for them, then art will return to music and even the masses will have good taste.
Was the middle-man under the current (old) model really taking the lion's share? Maybe they were taking a lion's share of a market or revenue stream that would not have existed but for them and their work. Nothing wrong with that just as there is nothing wrong with an artist achieving great commercial success.
 

fazendeiro

Member
Messages
1,103
The "Music World" needs for the business to be taken out of it.

When artists are rewarded directly for the music they make and there is no middle-man taking the lion's share and deciding what is a safe investment for them, then art will return to music and even the masses will have good taste.
Go to myspace and listen to the amateur musicians and bands. That's what you get when you take the business out of it.

As for the second part of your post, well, I sometimes like to have a few beers before breakfast too.
 

Baloney

Senior Member
Messages
1,676
The music world is suffering from alot more forms of entertainment and piracy. Back when I was a young un we were all into music and spent our dollars on it. Now kids have are into video games etc. Their money goes elsewhere. They dont really have to spend it on music. They can just rip it from a friend or illegally download it.

There are just way more options now and music is losing in the competition for the youths dollars.
 




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