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  #1  
Old 04-08-2009, 05:58 AM
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Default Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

I'm not a musical purist or anything like that. I consider myself pretty open-minded when it comes to music and I like stuff from most genres and even some stuff that has been on the radio. The only time I consider music bad is when it is a blatant imitation or completely devoid of creativity on a lyrical, musical, and compositional level... I am not trying to attack anyone or anything. In fact, I WANT to be proven wrong. Please give me some faith in pop culture.

I don't listen to the radio often (I guess this weakens my argument a bit from my lack of radio experience... Oops). The reason is that whenever I turn the radio on, I get bored to death by the new "artists" re-hashing the same tired ideas or just straight up trying to sound like another successful pop artist. I feel like I'm listening to the same songs over and over again.

Here is a list I have compiled out of boredom of the categories that make up most pop radio I have heard (pretty much the last ten years of pop radio; much less so the past 2-4 years).
1. A rap song that revolves around bass and tasteless/liberal use of synthesized sounds and lyrics usually pertaining to women (I will avoid the pop rap vernacular), drugs, how successful/good/wealthy they are, and/or police.

2. The typical sad pop song by a female vocalist; it can also be a pop country song that sneaked into the mainstream pop charts. Usually characterized by acoustic guitar (piano if you're lucky), a theme which distraught teenage girls can relate to, a hot singer, and a complete lack of depth.

3. The typical happy pop song by a female vocalist; it can also be a pop country song that sneaked into the mainstream pop charts. Usually characterized by guitar (fiddle or steel guitar if it's a country artist), upbeat lyrics/texture, a hot singer, and a complete lack of depth. A variation on this is the sexy pop song wherein the lyrics will be more provocative and the rhythm of the singing will probably be more syncopated (yay!).

4. Pop punk anthems by Green Day/Blink 182 wannabes and songs by artists who refuse to let go of grunge. Usually characterized by the artists' playing mix and match with a few basic chords, a 'look at me I want attention' image, lyrics that appeal to disillusioned teens, and an either abrasive (for grunge) or extremely nasally (for pop punk) vocals.

5. Male/female pop artist collaboration: Songs wherein female and male artists engage in a saucy or depressing dialogue (depending on the nature of their situation) regarding an implied relationship. Usually a snore instrumentally.

6. Flavor of the week up and coming pop diva song. Characterized by happy, shallow lyrics about being a teenage girl. She is probably very young and the music video will probably depict her doing acts that are inappropriate for her age.

7. Male pop song. There aren't that many male pop stars (as far as I know) who simply go by their name rather than a band name. Their songs are usually romantic and pretty dull musically; the singing style may be falsetto. Target audience seems to be girls.

That's all I can come up with right now... I just want to reiterate that this is all in good fun and is not a stab at anyone or anything. I like some artists that have made it in the pop charts in the last decade or so. A few I can think of off the top of my head: Radiohead, the White Stripes, Modest Mouse, Gorillaz... I can't think of any others that I've ever actually heard on pop radio at the moment.


Sorry for the giant wall of text, this is just a topic that I've been thinking for quite some time, I felt like I needed to put it into words.

If you disagree (with my general statement, I already know that I am probably way off target with my categories), why? What modern pop artists do you like? Why do you like them?

If you agree with me what would you attribute to the decline of creativity in pop music?
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Old 04-08-2009, 06:16 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

.........


I think every decade had its brand of mass marketed popular music designed to click as the lowest common denominator at the front end of the music business.

It actually should have been called business music....

I think when we look back at the rich and long lasting legacy of 'all that is great music' or great artists, I think they have mostly all come through the ranks rather unexpectedly. Be it the Beatles, Stones, Zep right down to the composers of your username, they have been the exceptions rather than the rule.

Its a different thing altogether that time has a way of turning the maverick into Mr. Establishment.

I guess that explains Steely Dan also being heard in some hotel elevators nowadays.


........

Last edited by aydee; 04-09-2009 at 04:24 AM.
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Old 04-08-2009, 06:39 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

Yeah i agree with you. The only "new" music that i listen to is BuckCherry, Hinder, and Simple Plan.
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Old 04-08-2009, 06:56 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

Yeah, I definitely hear what you're saying. I'm 19, so I guess when I look at the evolution of mainstream music I only see the greats since I wasn't around to see all of the dime a dozen pop artists. Even still, I feel like so few artists that have experienced major commercial success today are really unique. I can only think of a few artists from the 90's and 2000's that had a special/unique sound and also put a dent in the pop charts... Beck, The White Stripes, Radiohead, and I would say Nirvana but I don't think they were as original as people give them credit for.

I just feel like the 50's, 60's, 70's, and even 80's were so rich with new and creative sounds.

Maybe it's too much to ask for another Jimi Hendrix or Led Zeppelin...

And by the way, I would love to hear Steely Dan in an elevator rather than a muzakified version of the Girl From Ipanema or other beloved standards of mine :).
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Old 04-08-2009, 06:59 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

I've come up with a solution for what you're feeling. Don't turn on the radio.

There is a lot of good/great music out there being made today, you just have to work to find it.
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:04 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Originally Posted by Pavlos View Post
I've come up with a solution for what you're feeling. Don't turn on the radio.

There is a lot of good/great music out there being made today, you just have to work to find it.
There is definitely great music being made right now. There is a lot of interesting stuff going on in avant garde jazz, electronica, hip hop, and even rock. My problem is that the vast majority of America seems to gloss over all of this to listen to the same old same old on pop radio.
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:11 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

Yeah, I hear you man, but don't sweat it too much. It's not something you can really control. However, make sure you do support the artists you like with your money and that's one way to at least make a small contribution toward bringing something more substantial or different to the mainstream. And if your taste is not mainstream then so what? Maybe that's a good thing.
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:11 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pretzel Logic View Post

Maybe it's too much to ask for another Jimi Hendrix or Led Zeppelin...

And by the way, I would love to hear Steely Dan in an elevator rather than a muzakified version of the Girl From Ipanema or other beloved standards of mine :).
For every Zepplin there were many 'Breads'

me too, on the Dan in the elevator
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:25 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Originally Posted by Pavlos View Post
Yeah, I hear you man, but don't sweat it too much. It's not something you can really control. However, make sure you do support the artists you like with your money and that's one way to at least make a small contribution toward bringing something more substantial or different to the mainstream. And if your taste is not mainstream then so what? Maybe that's a good thing.
Yeah, I'm not getting worked up over it or anything, it's just something I'm interested in. I'm just trying to figure out what it means/how it reflects American society or if I'm dead wrong and popular music has always been like this.
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:39 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Originally Posted by Pretzel Logic View Post
I just feel like the 50's, 60's, 70's, and even 80's were so rich with new and creative sounds.
Time has done its task: the exceptional music has stayed afloat while the horde of horrible bands and so called artists have sunk into oblivion. In a couple of decades people will probably say that the 2000's was a golden era of pop music.
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Old 04-08-2009, 09:54 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Time has done its task: the exceptional music has stayed afloat while the horde of horrible bands and so called artists have sunk into oblivion. In a couple of decades people will probably say that the 2000's was a golden era of pop music.
Yeah, I kind of feel like some of what I'm feeling is nostalgia (even though I wasn't around). At the same time, when is the last time there was any real innovation in pop music? The last time we saw something new before Nirvana was probably rap in the eighties. It seems like there was a much wider variety of pop music in other eras. And sure, they had to put up with disco, hair metal, and loads of imitators, but it seems like there was so much more innovation and creativity. The last few years of the 60's alone had Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles, Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones, the Doors, and Jefferson Airplane. I know that a lot of that was because of the open-minded free spirited attitude of the time, but any one of those bands completely dwarfs anything we've seen in the 90's and 2000's as far as creativity and innovation in the pop charts.
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Old 04-08-2009, 10:45 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pretzel Logic View Post
Yeah, I definitely hear what you're saying. I'm 19, so I guess when I look at the evolution of mainstream music I only see the greats since I wasn't around to see all of the dime a dozen pop artists. Even still, I feel like so few artists that have experienced major commercial success today are really unique. I can only think of a few artists from the 90's and 2000's that had a special/unique sound and also put a dent in the pop charts... Beck, The White Stripes, Radiohead, and I would say Nirvana but I don't think they were as original as people give them credit for.

I just feel like the 50's, 60's, 70's, and even 80's were so rich with new and creative sounds.

Maybe it's too much to ask for another Jimi Hendrix or Led Zeppelin...

And by the way, I would love to hear Steely Dan in an elevator rather than a muzakified version of the Girl From Ipanema or other beloved standards of mine :).

Personally, I think that playing the Dan in elavators is a terrible idea! I'd never be able to get off! Or at the very least, creep a load of people out, by singing along to elevator music at the top of my lungs...!

*cough* Anyway... your point is one that has been made thousands, if not millions of times, and unfortunately, the situation seems to getting much, much worse.
Take the current musically retarded, "star" in the UK, "Lady GaGa". Pop "artists" these days do not appear to need any star quality at all - the woman in question appears to be a massively average young person who has been plucked off the street at random by some big record label, been given a silly hair cut and thrust into some big budget videos, and then sorted out with a ton of pitch correction technology. Bam, there ya go.
At least Britney Spears for example, much as I dislike her music, had a clear "back story". It seems that she and her family worked very hard for her role in pop culture. I miss good pop music. I wish we would be spoon fed Michael Jackson on the radio, Instead of this hyper-processed, assault on the senses that we get today.
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Old 04-08-2009, 12:47 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

I agree!

Apart from the Radiohead thing, I can't stand them.
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Old 04-08-2009, 01:35 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pretzel Logic View Post
I'm not a musical purist or anything like that. I consider myself pretty open-minded when it comes to music and I like stuff from most genres and even some stuff that has been on the radio. The only time I consider music bad is when it is a blatant imitation or completely devoid of creativity on a lyrical, musical, and compositional level... I am not trying to attack anyone or anything. In fact, I WANT to be proven wrong. Please give me some faith in pop culture.
Some popular stuff out there is actually pretty interesting for its popularity. Handlebars by Flobots for example. Most interesting Hip-hop I've heard in a long time.

Quote:
I don't listen to the radio often (I guess this weakens my argument a bit from my lack of radio experience... Oops). The reason is that whenever I turn the radio on, I get bored to death by the new "artists" re-hashing the same tired ideas or just straight up trying to sound like another successful pop artist. I feel like I'm listening to the same songs over and over again.
I feel for ya, man, but there are some unique stuff out there. You just gotta listen for it.

Quote:
Here is a list I have compiled out of boredom of the categories that make up most pop radio I have heard (pretty much the last ten years of pop radio; much less so the past 2-4 years).
1. A rap song that revolves around bass and tasteless/liberal use of synthesized sounds and lyrics usually pertaining to women (I will avoid the pop rap vernacular), drugs, how successful/good/wealthy they are, and/or police.
Not a fair judgment. A lot of mass-produced hiphop/rap out there is like this, but not all of it is.

Besides, I go by lyrics =/= music.There's some perfectly good old school rock with dumb lyrics about scoring with women. (Rush's first album! Led Zeppelin! Jimi Hendrix!)

2. The typical sad pop song by a female vocalist; it can also be a pop country song that sneaked into the mainstream pop charts. Usually characterized by acoustic guitar (piano if you're lucky), a theme which distraught teenage girls can relate to, a hot singer, and a complete lack of depth.

3. The typical happy pop song by a female vocalist; it can also be a pop country song that sneaked into the mainstream pop charts. Usually characterized by guitar (fiddle or steel guitar if it's a country artist), upbeat lyrics/texture, a hot singer, and a complete lack of depth. A variation on this is the sexy pop song wherein the lyrics will be more provocative and the rhythm of the singing will probably be more syncopated (yay!).

4. Pop punk anthems by Green Day/Blink 182 wannabes and songs by artists who refuse to let go of grunge. Usually characterized by the artists' playing mix and match with a few basic chords, a 'look at me I want attention' image, lyrics that appeal to disillusioned teens, and an either abrasive (for grunge) or extremely nasally (for pop punk) vocals.

5. Male/female pop artist collaboration: Songs wherein female and male artists engage in a saucy or depressing dialogue (depending on the nature of their situation) regarding an implied relationship. Usually a snore instrumentally.

6. Flavor of the week up and coming pop diva song. Characterized by happy, shallow lyrics about being a teenage girl. She is probably very young and the music video will probably depict her doing acts that are inappropriate for her age.

7. Male pop song. There aren't that many male pop stars (as far as I know) who simply go by their name rather than a band name. Their songs are usually romantic and pretty dull musically; the singing style may be falsetto. Target audience seems to be girls.

That's all I can come up with right now... I just want to reiterate that this is all in good fun and is not a stab at anyone or anything. I like some artists that have made it in the pop charts in the last decade or so. A few I can think of off the top of my head: Radiohead, the White Stripes, Modest Mouse, Gorillaz... I can't think of any others that I've ever actually heard on pop radio at the moment.


Sorry for the giant wall of text, this is just a topic that I've been thinking for quite some time, I felt like I needed to put it into words.

If you disagree (with my general statement, I already know that I am probably way off target with my categories), why? What modern pop artists do you like? Why do you like them?

If you agree with me what would you attribute to the decline of creativity in pop music?[/quote]
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Old 04-08-2009, 06:21 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Originally Posted by Pretzel Logic View Post
Yeah, I definitely hear what you're saying. I'm 19, so I guess when I look at the evolution of mainstream music I only see the greats since I wasn't around to see all of the dime a dozen pop artists. Even still, I feel like so few artists that have experienced major commercial success today are really unique. I can only think of a few artists from the 90's and 2000's that had a special/unique sound and also put a dent in the pop charts... Beck, The White Stripes, Radiohead, and I would say Nirvana but I don't think they were as original as people give them credit for.

I just feel like the 50's, 60's, 70's, and even 80's were so rich with new and creative sounds.

Maybe it's too much to ask for another Jimi Hendrix or Led Zeppelin...

And by the way, I would love to hear Steely Dan in an elevator rather than a muzakified version of the Girl From Ipanema or other beloved standards of mine :).
Well there's no denying that creativity is discouraged, nobody wants anything to do with music that they aren't 100% sure will make money, that makes it really difficult. More creative artists get no press and are much harder to come by. it's a vicious cycle but it's the way of the world, people willing to stumble outside of the box often find themselves starving and naked. If you're looking for creativity, stay away from most all popular music.
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Old 04-08-2009, 06:47 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

I agree, mostly. The music industry appears to be completely saturated with commercialized, mass-market, soulless pop. There is very little revolutionary change in mainstream music today, it's more evolutionary - on a commercial level.

Rock and roll is dead, in the mainstream...but it's alive all over the world in garages, basements, street-corners, dirty little hole-in-the-wall clubs, and so on. Like all great empires, the current music industry empire is bound to collapse or undergo huge changes, once again providing more opportunity for the little guy to get more exposure. The internet and all of the small, independent labels are at the forefront of this movement.

Or not...maybe we're forever doomed to scan the radio airwaves while driving, trying to find the least crappy thing being played. :P
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Old 04-08-2009, 06:57 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

I hate cookie cutter music, and it's all based on the $$ from big record companies pushing the play time.

I do however find some fresh, interesting music here and there.......

Black Stone Cherry I find new and refreshing. Though they are not new I really enjoy Collective soul.

The sad song category, "Breathe" pleases my ears, though I can't remember the girl who sings it. Though there are not as many as there should be.......... there are some if you look. IMO
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:45 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

Maybe one should look outside the US for good music...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0PF7GaDCrY

skip the corny video and just listen to the music, IMO its excellent stuff. It'd be under the category of sad song, certainly very original to my ears.

I agree, creativity is discouraged...It's like the record companies tell the "artist" what to make. I mean, i can't believe that EVERY single new "artist" that "comes out" makes the same old crap, that's why i think they're told what to make.

When chris daughtry won american idol, i thought he was actually going to be a "rocker," but what does he become....just another nickleback...

argh!
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:49 PM
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When chris daughtry won american idol, i thought he was actually going to be a "rocker," but what does he become....just another nickleback...

argh!
I doubt he had a choice in the matter if he wanted to remain famous and cash in on his name, which would have only been hot property for a short time after American Idol.

That show is a mill for churning out new pop artists w/ short shelf-lives.
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:51 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

Great thread. Current music reflects the current culture, no?
I do agree that the majority of mainstream music is so slick and formulated and beat perfect that it leaves me flat and uninspired. I'm so grateful for satellite radio.
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Old 04-08-2009, 08:00 PM
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I'm so grateful for satellite radio.
Oh man...I miss mine so badly! The wife made me cancel to cut corners and save some cash, so it had to go.

You can find some *great* stuff on the web, of course. Wazee radio is always good for something new (www.wazee.org).
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Old 04-08-2009, 08:01 PM
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Originally Posted by zambizzi View Post
I doubt he had a choice in the matter if he wanted to remain famous and cash in on his name, which would have only been hot property for a short time after American Idol.

That show is a mill for churning out new pop artists w/ short shelf-lives.
or no shelf-lives at all!! I doubt we all remember this guy....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6O-yohHK25g
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Old 04-08-2009, 08:02 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

I think a lot of creativity is lost due to so much music just being machines these days.

So much of pop radio is not made with top session players, but with a mix of drum machines and sequencers. Creativity is limited to what new filter you can put on a synth line.

On the flip side, as noted by Wavelength, time has a way of letting the good bands stand out while the bad stuff sinks.

We can look back with nostalgia at the 80s for bands that actually played, but we forget in the 80s pop radio was stuffed full of Tiffany, Debbie Gibson, Rick Ashley, New Kids on the Block.

The 70's may be remembered for Led Zepplin, Deep Purple, et all, but don't forget, the Pop world was full of Disco and cookie cutter dance songs.

We remember the 50s and 60's for Elvis, Beatles and the Who, but history shows pop music was also full of pop singers like Pat Boone, Anita Baker, Barbara, and others who dominated the radio for short periods with bland songs that have been forgotten by most people.

The bright side of today, is it's easy to turn off the radio and look elsewhere. Most new bands I listen to these days I found online; they're big in Europe while not well known here. The 'net makes it easy to find smaller quality bands. Internet radio exposes lots of different music that would not have any found any exposure before.

Still, sometimes I wish I had been around in the late 60's so I could have seen The Who, Jefferson Airplane, etc, live at their primes, or maybe if I had been older in the 80's so I could have played in bands that actually wanted drummers, rather than so many bands only wanting machines. On the other hand, it kills me how easy it is these days for a band to record quality material on a home system, put it up on myspace/youtube/etc. If I could combine all the new technology with the sheer amount of work I put into my career in the 90's, I'd have to think I'd have a bit more of a career than I did now.

So, overall, it cuts both ways. :-)
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Old 04-08-2009, 08:03 PM
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Originally Posted by TheGroceryman View Post
or no shelf-lives at all!! I doubt we all remember this guy....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6O-yohHK25g
SOUL PATROL!!! Haha...no thanks.
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Old 04-08-2009, 08:19 PM
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WORK IN PROGRESS

Not a fair judgment. A lot of mass-produced hiphop/rap out there is like this, but not all of it is.

Sorry if I was not clear with what I'm trying to say. It's the mass-produced stuff I'm talking about. I don't hear anything other than the mass-produced variety on pop radio. I'm actually a fan of hip hop. The soulja boy (sp?) movement made me sick to my stomach. If I ever hear a crank dat [insert random noun here] song again, I will probably puke. On the other hand, I'm a big fan of stuff like the Roots, Cut Chemist, Jurassic Five, Gorillaz (props to them for getting radio play with a different sound), some Nas (props to him as well for getting radio play), and a lot of the RJD2 stuff.



And I just want to say again, I'm not complaining about trying to find music or that there is no good music. There is A LOT of great stuff going on right now. . . I just wish pop radio would pick up on some of it.
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Old 04-08-2009, 08:48 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Originally Posted by Pretzel Logic View Post
I just wish pop radio would pick up on some of it.
Two words.

Clear channel.

And two more words from Aydee earlier in this thread.

Business music.
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  #27  
Old 04-08-2009, 08:58 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

It's happending in live groups too. The band I was recently "fired" from (an all volunteer position), the leader was one of these egotistical anal cats who was too damn scared to try anything new, other than having a 2 bar drum fill of just a basic 4/4 rock beat. We had a very good rhythm guitarist / Djembe player, several good singers, keyboards, etc. But this jerk refused to experiment or explore. Rather it was just a rehash of what was on the CD. After he assumed leadership in January, things got REALLY boring.

Isn't it our jobs as musicians to push the envolope, experiment, explore, etc?
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Old 04-08-2009, 09:26 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Isn't it our jobs as musicians to push the envolope, experiment, explore, etc?
That's what's up. People seem to be forgetting this in a lot of genres. It's also one of the reasons that Les Claypool is one of my favorite living musicians. I think anyone with music so different that it can't be classified deserves mad respect.
That's why it's so sad to me that the majority of the population seems to be forgetting that music is art. This is a pretty generous parallel for pop music, but If I repaint the Mona Lisa am I a real artist? I may have the technical proficiency to paint it, but what's the point if someone already did it?
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Old 04-09-2009, 03:13 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

ROTFLLLLLULLLZZZZ!!!

IT'S FUNNY CUZ ITS TRUEELOL11!!!!1!!111!





I'm not kidding, but I listen to the radio so that I'm not completely isolated to the time period that is my High School career. I can listen to practically anything.
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Old 04-09-2009, 03:27 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

The only pop band of today I like is the Jonas Brothers. I have some Miley Cyrus/Hannah Montana and High School Musical but I don't really like it. I babysit and teach the first graders at my church so I kind of need to be familiar with "kiddie pop". However, I LOVE the Jonas Brothers and I'm not afraid to admit it. I think there is still some creativity in today's pop music, but it's very scarce.
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Old 04-09-2009, 04:16 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

To make my life a little better, the majority of my listening time is devoted to music that was recorded in the days before click-tracks. Bands that kept there own time. It was organic, it breathed. From the Big-Bands to Motown, it had a certain swing or groove that made it musical.
I now listen to internet radio on the road and at home. This is free, they have a good variety of music... http://www.pandora.com
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Old 04-10-2009, 02:11 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

I didn't read all the posts before me, so I apologize if I'm repeating something someone said. I agree very much with what you (the original poster) are saying. I used to be completely down on the radio and still think most of it is (insert negative adjective of choice here). However, my sister likes pop music for its dance factor (I can't dance to save my life, so it doesn't appeal to me for that) so I listen to it with her a lot. One thing that I like to do with all the pop music I hear is to try to find one redeeming quality in each of the songs that I hear. Be it an interesting sample, lick, or what have you. It's kind of interesting to try to do this. Sometimes you can't though. Just a thought, it's a fun challenge sometimes.
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Old 04-10-2009, 02:25 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

There is a LOT of music out there. Some is creative, some is not. Personally I feel this is a great time for music. The internet has made it possible for even this guy http://www.that1guy.com/ to be heard.

When I hear the music younger drummers are listening to I feel inspired and see a great deal of creativity going on. Just listen to Thomas Haake or Chris Pennie. Music is at the best point it's been in years. IMO
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Old 04-10-2009, 08:19 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Originally Posted by Jeremy Bender View Post
To make my life a little better, the majority of my listening time is devoted to music that was recorded in the days before click-tracks. Bands that kept there own time. It was organic, it breathed. From the Big-Bands to Motown, it had a certain swing or groove that made it musical.
I now listen to internet radio on the road and at home. This is free, they have a good variety of music... http://www.pandora.com
OMG Thanks for that link! this is AWSOME!
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Old 04-10-2009, 10:28 PM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

I was just thinking about this today, especially in terms of dynamics it seems alot of songs are all one volume, it bothers me
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Old 04-10-2009, 11:49 PM
Alex H Alex H is offline
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Originally Posted by Mastershake16 View Post
I was just thinking about this today, especially in terms of dynamics it seems alot of songs are all one volume, it bothers me
You are correct. This would be why:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loudness_war
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:01 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

tis a shame aint it

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Old 04-13-2009, 03:47 AM
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Default Re: Creativity Discouraged in Today's Popular Music?

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Originally Posted by DrumEatDrum View Post
I think a lot of creativity is lost due to so much music just being machines these days.
So much of pop radio is not made with top session players, but with a mix of drum machines and sequencers. Creativity is limited to what new filter you can put on a synth line.
Agreed. But even more subtly, it's not just machines, it's the fact that one person with a machine can do everything now. One person can be a whole band. And you're a lot less likely to get something truly creative and inspired out of a single person. It's always a lot more interesting to have a group of people working together, inspiring each other, to come up with stuff that goes beyond what just one of them will do alone.

Another important factor, I think, is mass-production. I'll use an analogy to explain:
Back in the early days of television, there was just a handful of shows, and so only a handful of writers who wrote the scripts. So the writers that got the jobs were the best of the best, and you could argue that some of those shows were much better than a lot of what's on the tube today. But in this information- and product-hungry society we have today, there is a constant need for mass-produced product, so now there are literally thousands of people writing for tv, cable, film. Sure there will always be a few geniuses among that number, but the huge majority will be mediocre or worse and a huge amount of scripts are going to be uninspired or plain old crap.

The same principle applies to music, thanks to machines. Anyone with the barest talent or inspiration that can afford a computer can sample someone else's work to create "music". When you level the playing field completely, throw open the door for anyone to come in, you're going to find a few wonderful new gems, but the majority can only be crap.

And that's exactly what we have in modern music. There will always be a few great artists making music out there, and the rest will be crap. At least it's easier to find the gems these days, what with online downloads and internet radio. If you ask me what has killed the music industry, it's not just their greed: it's their focus on product instead of art.
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