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Old 08-21-2009, 06:10 PM
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Deltadrummer Deltadrummer is offline
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Default Re: Pop Music in General

Most definitely. I felt guilty about not posting some Crimson originally, esp something like Lark's Tongues or Red. But I left that for you. :) I used the Chick for the name mostly. And what about Cream, Hendrix or Graham Bond? It goes way back, doesn't it?

I like the notion of pop music as music that is made specifically for commercial consideration. I get a kick out of a lot of it. But I try to make a distinction between music whose merit is exclusively commercial: Brittany or The Archies, and music that although it is commercially appealing, it has some artistic merit, something like Walking on the Moon. In that sense, pop music can rise to the occasion of a sense of artistic merit. I like Dream Theater, another good example. The music they do is a lot of fun; but very rarely actually has an acute sense of artistic merit. I would actually give it more cred. than a lot of folks that would say it's warmed over 70s rock and 80s metal. To me it may have some sense of artistic merit, but to someone else it is just pop.

The important thing to me about contemporary notion is the idea that popular music can rise to art and can be historically pertinent. I brought up Bartok, (and that didn't bring The Colonel in) Look at the number of artist influenced by Bartok: Zappa, Keith Emerson, Jason Moran, and Lutoslawski, a pretty far range. And he didn't get the lauds that Stravinsky got, or Schoenberg among academics. He was probably the composer influenced by folk music who brought it to the most artistic level.

Again the problem when discussing pop music in regards to quality is you have to get passed a lot of superfluous notions of importance to whom, and when. Issues of class, gender, race etc. play a big part in that authentication of taste. And you get into that with a discussion of any musical genre, oh that term.

What is a true artistic expression? Is "She Loves You" not art but "The Long and Winding Road" is? Is "The Black Page" not pop, but My Guitar's Gonna Kill Your Mama, is? What about something like Prokofiev's Lt. Kije Suite, often quoted by popular songwriters? Does quoting Prokofiev make a pop song 'not pop'? Maybe the point of am trying to make is that something can be superfluous and still have charm, and maybe even artistic merit. A lot of the stuff my students bring in is actually quite nice pop: Disturbed, Avenged Sevenfold, Seether. I would be listening to that stuff if I were 15. So this notion that somehow good popular music died with Hendrix and Janis is just nonsense. I mean I am a music historian, and if I could get passed that notion, I think anyone can. and it is a notion that is very bad for music.
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Last edited by Deltadrummer; 08-21-2009 at 07:03 PM.
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