I seem to remember there were times when music meant something to people. I seem to remember it filled up many of my most elated and most desperate hours when I was young... now, I am not sure anymore if that is true in general... if it is just a shift in my perception or if the constant bombardment with music everywhere and at every possible place, occasion and time has made it a dull background noise of our existence.
"purple rain" by prince is a song that, when it came out back in 1984, made me stop in my tracks. yet, at the same time, I understood it was a parody of rock and pop allures already; with it's cheasy heavy guitar solo, performed by prince with all his artistic mannerisms, with lyrics that didn't really mean anything but hit you right into the heart, with a non existing melody that burnt itself into your mind, it was sort of a culmination point for the pop culture... but yes it still really MEANT something.
when I listen to music today, I often find this parodistic element in both lyrics and the music itself - a quote more or less of music that has been originally created before. hardly ever I have this "hallelujah" feeling of something really new. now, I assume most of this is due to my own age; I've been exposed to music for too long to not have "deja vu" experiences about it; but then again, there seems to be a shift in what goes through for an "original" new song today. it seems to be almost encouraged to copy and reuse melodies, lines, quotes from former musical material - there seems to be no wish in modern audience to experience something entirely new.
I am not sure what this means. I won't say it's a cultural downfall that "the youth of today" doesn't want to rebel in their music taste anymore. maybe music, as before books, fashion, intellectual thought, emotional deepness, goes the same way when a person ages - it gets "used", compressed to memories and not entirely repeatable, it simply ceases to be the center of focus because suddenly, there are other things to do, a job to be done, a family to be raised, kids to be taken care of - or simply, a life to be lived. music doesn't fulfill anything... it doesn't change us, it just makes us feel good. but yet... I sometimes miss that message, that urge, that meaning we found in music back then.
"purple rain" still gets played in the radio today every now and then. it still sounds to me as if that young arrogant prick of a great artist is constantly mocking us about ourselves.
You remind me of another song which came out years ago and the name of it or the band escapes me. Maybe Blues Traveler? Dave Mathews? Anyway, it opens with the line, "It doesn't matter what I say, as long it is sung with inflection". Talk about mocking your audience. And I was glad to hear it. For far too many of us seem tuned in only partially to the experience. And not just music.
Modern music makes me weep, it seems Simon cowell has brought in what he thinks is a ready made no1 hit a nd to be fair to the bloke he's hit on a w inner but to me it is blandness beyond bland and wants me to smash whatever it is I heard it on. My tastes probably don't fit in with yours but when I first heard The Pogues singing Sally maclennane it made my soul sing, I've seen them numerous times and as long as Shane McGowan is in full flow I'm in heaven. It does not matter to me that maybe he can't do the scales he belts it out from his soul, fantastic. Once,when going to watch them, we were in a pub saying we better get a move on when the landlord says "if your going to see that Irish lot, don't worry, their pissed in the back room. " Then when they staggered on stage they brought crates of beer on with them, Shane was always better with a skinfull in him in the early days. I could talk about The Smiths all day, once again superb without the scales. The youth of today just listen to throwaway music today, I can't imagine these songs being remembered in 20 years time. Thanks for a great post, lets hope you get loads of replys a nd hopefully some youngsters defending todays music.