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  • Music - A Debate

    Silentbob66 and I have been discussing the roles of current musicians and music as a whole. What do you think of today's music?

    Personally, I am against pop music. Especially as it pertains to now. Pop is a genre that has no real value other than entertainment, and that's fine. HOWEVER, there should also be an element of talent. Today's pop artists are devoid of that and that is why I am against pop music. The fact that there is no artistic merrit, no soul, no passion or true emotion really is a slap in the face to music. Micheal Jackson is great because he was a full out entertainer. He was unique in everything he did, and despite what his personal life is like, he will always be remembered as something great. Even without the scandal, you are still left with a person of remarkable abilities.

    But what about artists like Jennifer Lopez? A dancer/ below-average actor/ pitiful singer who is famous because of a body part? What is even more ridiculous is that most people of her ethnicity share that same body part... So what is so special about her? Then we have Brittany Spears, whose vocals are laughable at best. She stays popular because of antics... Christina A. has more talent than the aforementioned artists, but that isn't saying much when compared with the pop artists of yester year. Basically, pop is at an all time low, and with shows like American Idol, in which people who know nothing about music choose the fates of people who have dedicated their lives to an art form, it's no wonder music sucks now!

    So what do you think?

  • #2
    I agree 100%.

    Pop music today is a joke. Pop music back in the day actually meant something. It was "POP"ular, but alot of it was also good. Not all of it, but a greater percentage than the pop of today.

    You look back to The Beatles, Elvis, Bee Gee's, Jackson 5, Michael Jackson, The Eagles, Whitney Houston, Boyz II Men ... all pop music. All good music. The difference is that music wasn't made to be "Pop" it was made to be good and became popular just because it was good. Today's music is made for one reason, and one reason only. Money. It's manufactured to be popular.

    There are some popular artists that are good. John Mayer comes to mind. He's popular, but he doesn't fit the POP only genre.

    Christina Aguilera has a beautiful voice. I think her and Britney are switching places again. Christina went through her skanky phase, and now seems to be growing up a bit. Britney ... well, no comment.

    My other gripe is when people say that people "Sell-Out" when they put their song on a commercial, movie, etc. Are you really thinking they didn't "Sell-Out" long before that? It's all about money, but some people know how to make good music while making money. If people didn't want to Sell-Out they would give away their music for free.

    Good topic!!!

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    • #3
      I believe one person was pointing out Frank Sinatra to counter the argument against pop(ular) music.

      However, I think the essential difference is that of talent. Sinatra was a pop singer, some claim. Ashlee Simpson is a pop singer. I don't know one person who would argue that they are comparable talent.

      Music can be good and still be popular, but that which is popular is not necessarily good, and we all know it.

      I remember a popular song from the 80s/90s, in fact, it may have been rap with a sung chorus. It went something like this: "OH BABY YOU!..... Got what I nee-eed, and you say he's just a friend, and you say he's just a friend, OH BABY-!" You get the point. If you remember this song, it's absolutely atrocious. We knew it was atrocious at the time, but we still liked it. Again, that which is popular need not necessarily be good.

      Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...


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      • #4
        Music can be good and still be popular, but that which is popular is not necessarily good.
        Couldn't have said it better myself. Thank you!!

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        • #5
          I come from a classically trained musical family. My first choice in music is Classical and Opera, then Jazz and Musical Theater. I have a 2000 plus vinyl collection. Except for being a big fan of early Rock & Roll from '55 - '65 (my family was appalled), I've pretty much ignored Pop, Rock and Rap. There was also a brief interlude in '63 or so when the folk music craze swept the nation.

          The following is lifted from a review of one of the best musical theater vocalists still around, Barbara Cook and appeared in the New York Times last week. This one section where he goes a bit off track about the current state of music and the American Public's perception of it is quite interesting.

          "While watching Ms. Cook perform, I thought back to the Broadway anthology unleashed on the April 5 edition of ''American Idol,'' whose nine contestants struggled to articulate fragments of songs like ''The Impossible Dream,'' ''People,'' ''My Funny Valentine'' and ''Hello, Young Lovers.'' The paradox of this toxic singing contest, which is the rough equivalent of the old ''Ed Sullivan Show'' in suggesting the median level of mass musical taste, is that it has the power to canonize songs, which its clueless judges then go on to treat as stunts in a gymnastic competition that rewards crude physical prowess.

          To listen to Simon Cowell dismiss the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic ''Hello, Young Lovers'' as a ''mind-numbingly boring'' song that belongs on ''a washing powder commercial in 1965'' was to hear an ill-willed philistine sneering through a cloud of his own noxious vapors.

          The contestants are urged not to be ''pitchy'' (the program's favorite pseudo-technical word for off-pitch, which they usually are), and are congratulated for their high notes and telegenic appeal. (''I admit I'm falling in love with you,'' Paula Abdul gushed to one. ''When you smile you melt America's heart,'' she blubbered to another.) The third judge, Randy Jackson, doesn't know the difference between a dude and a ''dogg'' (his two favorite words).

          Let's not kid ourselves: the ascendance of ''American Idol,'' and its turning of music into sports, signals the end of American popular song as we know it. Its ritual slaughter of songs allows no message to be carried, no wisdom to be communicated, other than the screamed and belted song of the self."

          It's so true and SO sad!
          "America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between." Oscar Wilde

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          • #6
            And regardless of ALL that... I intend to audition next season, even if Simon Cowell WILL call me fat (and he will).

            Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...


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            • #7
              Originally posted by Morrigoon
              And regardless of ALL that... I intend to audition next season, even if Simon Cowell WILL call me fat (and he will).
              Are you going to sing something from Forbidden Broadway in your very best Ethel Merman voice?
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              • #8
                Originally posted by Dustysage
                Are you going to sing something from Forbidden Broadway in your very best Ethel Merman voice?

                I think she should saunter into the room as well

                Admitedly, I like Boy Bands!!!

                Reality is I can listen to a number of types of music. Rap and country are tolerable, but generally when i don;t like a certain song I change the station and that's it. There are some types that annoy me...but then again there are people who annoy me too. LOL

                What I think is sad is that when it comes to music video's, people are less than entertained if it does not have to do with sex. Man, the videos in the 80's were so cool!!!!

                My favorite POPular song righ now is: "Lonely...I'm so lonely, I have no body to call my own oooooowoooooooooooooooo" :lol: That song makes me crack up
                Last edited by Disneykat; 05-10-2005, 05:11 PM.
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                • #9
                  I think one of the problems in music..along with general entertainment, is that the target audience is getting much younger than years before, therefore, the entertainer is much younger than before. Hard to have quality and experience at the ripe 'ol age of 16.
                  Marge: Barnacle Bill's Home Pregnancy Test? Homer, shouldn't we have gone with a better-known brand?
                  Homer: But Marge, this one came with a corn-cob pipe!
                  Marge: [reading from the test box] "Ahoy, Maties! If the water turns blue, a baby for you! If purple ye see, no baby thar be!"
                  Homer: So, which is it? Blue or purple?
                  Marge: Pink.
                  Homer: D'oh!
                  Marge: "If ye test should fail, to a doctor set sail!"

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Cuzco-topia
                    I think one of the problems in music..along with general entertainment, is that the target audience is getting much younger than years before, therefore, the entertainer is much younger than before. Hard to have quality and experience at the ripe 'ol age of 16.
                    While the targets are much youger, the material is not. Pop music is so over-sexed, and over-sluttified that it's a wonder children are still children!

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                    • #11
                      I have to agree with Disneykat that I admit to liking some pop music. As much as I hate Britney Spears, she is the Madonna of our generation and puts out the best dance music! When I am driving or working, I like something mindless with a beat.

                      Now before I get flamed- I am also a semi classically trained musician. I played in the symphony for 10 years and nothing thrills me more than a concerto. I really just love all kinds of music- jazz, classical, accoustic- anything. There is so much variety on my iPod, you might think I have split personalities. I even like rap, and I think that some pop artists, like Eminem, are underrated in their artistic talent. It sucks that most musice nowadays is aimed at the tween generation, but we are luckier than most because of mp3 players and sattelite radio- we are not stuck with listening to whatever the current flavor tends to be. It is easier than ever to listen to music that suits your own taste
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                      • #12
                        I have no formal training as a musician. In fact, I possess no musical inclination whatsoever. But I do enjoy a wide variety of music, and if I hear a song I like, that's it. I don't care if it's pop or rap or metal or punk, as long as I like it. Yes, a vast majority of today's new pop music sucks. But I have been known to have questionable taste in movies and television, so why not music, too? It's mindless entertainment, background noise on the freeway or on the way to work. And I don't care how bad it is, if I want to crank up a Justin Timberlake jam and bop along, so be it.

                        Laugh all you want.
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                        • #13
                          I also do like some Pop music.

                          Limiting your musical intake to any certain genre doesn't give you a good perspective IMO. I respect desertdweler, and can't argue with your taste in music but I think you do need to widen your horizons a bit.

                          Of course the American Idol contestants can't sing broadway songs. That's not why they are there. They are there to be Pop songs, and sadly, most people who watch that show (I used to) don't care about Broadway tunes.

                          I have a very wide spectrum of musical tastes from theatre, classical, jazz, classic rock, modern rock, alternative rock, r&b, rap, country, folk, etc. I even have some cd's that I can't understand (because they are in a foreign language) but the music is so enchanting that I love them. LadySmith Black Mambaso comes to mind.

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                          • #14
                            I stopped listening to the radio last year. I have no idea what goes on besides what I occasionally pick up on TV and the mall (where I work.)

                            There's bad music everywhere. Coming from the other side, a lot of people assume the indier the band is, the better they are. People expatiate on indie's merits, and I agree with a lot of their points, but despite a band's "indieness" they can still be total crap. People get a lot of unnecessary flack for liking certain bands that have in their worldview "sold out" or "too many people like"; Modest Mouse is the best example in my mind.

                            "Indie rock" is being embraced more and more by record companies. Since it has such a huge youth/teen/underground following, it's becoming more apparent with bands such as Death Cab for Cutie and such being signed to major labels... It's all about trends. Remember a few years back when "punk" exploded all over the place with Good Charlotte and even earlier with Blink 182?

                            It's all pop music now.

                            You just gotta stick with what you like, I guess.
                            Well, light travels from the sun. Then, bounces off of our planet, and back into our eyes so we can perceive color. My body can intercept that light and dance around on it!


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                            • #15
                              I am a classically trained punk rocker. I don't listen to any American "popular" music. I also don't listen to commercial radio - ever - and I have a VERY large collection of strange CDs from around the world. Give me J-Pop over A-Pop any day. French music is always somewhere on the many players. Modern Cabaret is a favorite. Brazillian Pop rules as does Porteguese Fado music. I have a soft spot for modern classical music as well as swanky film and play music. However, I also love Prodigy, NIN, Einsturtzende Neubauten and will play those back to back with Stan Getz or Frank Sinatra. The sky's the limit.

                              In my opinon, there is too much out there that is good to limit myself to the top 100. The stuff that ends up there is usually heinous - with a few exceptions. I don't have time for crap in my life when the music world is wide open and wonderful.

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by robotpirates
                                Remember a few years back when "punk" exploded all over the place with Good Charlotte and even earlier with Blink 182?
                                Sorry, but these are NOT punk bands. That are as close to real punk as chocolate pudding is to creamed corn.

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                                • #17
                                  I'm now into swiss yodeling music (matterhorn queue but way faster) and early hank williams..still love punk and electronic chill, lounge..
                                  "As usual he's taken over the coolest spot in the house"- Father re: Orville 1963

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Not Afraid
                                    Sorry, but these are NOT punk bands. That are as close to real punk as chocolate pudding is to creamed corn.
                                    :bow: WORD, Not Afraid! :bow:
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                                    • #19
                                      Everyone has their own musical tastes, personally I love the Dave Matthews Band and I know for a fact that there are people out there that hate them and don't understand where the obsession comes from, much like with all of our Disney addictions.

                                      Pop music is what the Beatles, Elvis and everything else was back in the 50's and 60's, but in today's terminolgy, Pop music today is refered to the Britney's, N'sync, Christina's of the world for the most part. DMB is considered pop music now to some as well, because it gets played on the radio frequently on stations that play Britney and Christina. Pop is just a general term used to refer to what is on the radio and charts at the time. There is plenty of music out there and everyone is going to like something different.

                                      The Beatles early years are considered the pop music years, but the quality of the Beatles music didn't change when they released Revolver, Sgt. Pepper etc. it just wasn't popular initially and therefore was not given the Pop label that albums such as Please Please Me, Help, etc. were given.

                                      The music industry is going through an interesting time right now as it adjusts to the digital music age and the distribution of music is changing from albums/cd's to individual song files on the internet. For me, I have a bigger issue with the difference between the terms artist and performer. As American Idol has shown, it doesn't take all that much talent to get known as a performer, but it takes talent to be considered in artist in my opinion.

                                      I love music greatly in general, so I apologize if this was a really random and hard to follow post.

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                                      • #20
                                        Allow me to explain my philosophy on pop music for a moment.

                                        As I said in another thread, pop music falls into two types of categories. A Main category, and a Sub category.

                                        Take Rap for instance. Rap has been aorund for a good 30 years or so, and only now is it dominating all other art forms. It is so popular in fact, that many radio station owners have begun shutting down their rock stations to make more rap stations. Now although every teenager loves to play 50 cent and Eminem and Ludacris, you can't really call these artists pop artists. You also cannot call rap "pop" music. At least not as the main category.

                                        Rap will always be rap. It was rap before, it will be rap after. This makes the term "pop" a sub-category. Jazz was at one time considered popular music, but before that it was Jazz, and it is still known as Jazz. Therefore "pop" is a sub-category also.

                                        There are artists that are "pop" artists and when you categorize them, they will be under the name "POP". Brittany Spears will be known as a pop artist, J-lo will be known as a pop artist etc. That's where confusion comes into play. The main argument of pop supporters is that all music is pop music. Well that's not true.

                                        The pop I HATE is dedicated pop. The music that is under the category "pop". Not all mind you, because Micheal Jackson is one the best entertainers of all time, but today's stuff is bulls***. We have artists that won't even sing live, don't write their own songs, can't play instruments, don't understand music, don't produce, don't create. They basically do whatever they're told to do. That isn't music. That's pop.

                                        And today's pop sucks...
                                        Last edited by Soulquarian; 05-12-2005, 06:17 PM.

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