It won’t be great, if you won’t let it.
In my exploration into the world of music i described in my first entry, I’ve come across a certain mindset in the articles I read. And I must say, it rubs me the wrong way.
Music today isn’t good. Or, music today will never be music back then. Um, duh. Thanks for the deep thinking, fellas. Of course it’s not the same, it can’t be. Nor was Pink Floyd in the 60’s. or Zeppelin in the 70’s. And it was…. good, right? Because it was new, original, rock. Your ears dripped with need to play it over and over and over. Your ears still feel that way, decades later. And while it was the band who made the sound, you made the band. So why is that not the case now? Why are bands that are trying to rock out in whatever genre they choose with the sound they find original, not around? I listen to a tad mainstream but i stay mostly away from the radio. And i don’t argue that the aforementioned bands were one of a kind changing the shape of music, of rock.
But does that mean nothing today is up to that standard? Why? And who says?
Yes, the stuff on the radio is watered down pop with 1.5 minute songs that play over 50 times a day on one station. I get that. But don’t forget the bands lingering in the background. The bands just hovering over radio play , a place that allows them the option to keep the sound thick and as original as they can be. The place in their career where it’s crucial you support that sound so they can get paid for THAT sound. My zune is filled with bands that are “known”, you say their name and people know OF them. Or people know one song that the band ingeniously created for radio play. That got radio fans to buy an album that sounded nothing like that radio single. And the music is good. Different. In my opinion, rock. But rock is an attitude followed by sound, that’s why we can put Buddy Holly and Van Halen in somewhat the same category. Is that what people forget? That just because it wasn’t formed in the 60/70’s that it isn’t “rock”. Go back, guys. Go back to when you heard that sound in the car when your mom was changing stations. Go back to when your friend wouldn’t shut up about the LP he just bought. Go back there and remember, you can still feel that now. I do. And no, not to Britney or Kanye.
The joy of music and rock is also stunted by this odd aversion to “mainstream” and “indie”. You don’t know what music is if you listen to mainstream. And you’re apparently a hipster if you listen to indie. And those are the categories given. How black and white is that? So nobody can like anything too much. And heaven forbid the indie goes mainstream, talk about a reason to die. JUST LOVE YOUR DAMN MUSIC. Because as I said before, it’s you that makes them. And the more they struggle to make it big, and the more their original sound isn’t worshiped… and the easier it is for record labels to water that sound down for those mainstream ears.
I’ll use this band as an example, Kings of Leon. Depending on what you know of them, or when you first heard them your reaction to that name differed. I could share mine, but I’d rather not ride that boat right now. I love this band. But not because of what they currently do, unfortunately. I watched them release a few albums (and listened incessantly) and thought music couldn’t get any more cool. These guys had it. It was was sex, it was anger, it was carelessness, it was mistakes, it was drugs. I ate it up and patiently waited for fame. But how do you know the band now? Use Somebody? This band is a prime example of something that was original, something unique…a sound that in times gone by might have actually sky rocketed to the fame of the greats. But the masses weren’t there. And the record label watered that garden down. And now, though I hate to say it, the band is not great.
So did i answer my own question? The fan base isn’t there for sound like that, so people who were conditioned on successful rock strongly agree music is bad? Is it the fans? Is it the band? What was it about for Pink Floyd? Led Zeppelin? Van Halen? AC/DC? The Stones? And what is about for the bands now? Is that the ultimate factor?
Whatever the case, I simply can’t allow the older generation to say music isn’t good now. Because while they took the effort to take in those great bands in their adolescents, they won’t take the effort now. So they won’t find the Jimmy Page of this time. Or the Keith Moon. Or the Jim Morrison. And just because I’m young and didn’t grow up with that music, doesn’t mean I won’t know it when I hear it. And maybe, if older generations who were lucky enough to be around when that music was created and set loose, could come out and support bands trying to do the same, music wouldn’t be as shallow and one dimensional as the current generation. Mix it up, guys. And some flour to that milk.
I use the past to find my future, especially in the world of music. I suggest, if you have the mindset I’ve accused some of, you do the same. You might take your headphones off surprised.