Friday, May 14, 2010

10 Reasons To Get Excited About Music: #4-1

[to see the first part of this list #10-8 click on this link]
10. Music Gods Still Walk The Face Of The Earth
9. American Idol and Glee are teaching the youth of America (and some of us who need refreshers) the history of pop music.
8. Rock Is Broadway
[to see the second part of this list #7-5 click on this link]
7. Teen Music Doesn’t Suck
6. Rolling Stone Is A Great Magazine
5. Music Is Everywhere

Now, we have the final four . . .

4. Genre? What's A Genre?
The lines between musical genres have been obliterated. Marketing people would love to define what we listen to into categories, too bad popular music has made this nigh impossible.

You Want to rap over rock? Go for it.




You want to record a country album? Why not?




Record a hit song as a kids record? Sure




Breaking genres is awesome for artists so they can express their art and not categories. As for us as an audience, we get to listen to anything we want as we explore music not because of its genre but despite it. Marketing companies no longer have power to tell us what we shall listen. We have the power.

3. Music Is Funny Again
Sometimes we take music too seriously. In the 1980s Weird Al Yankovich provided much needed perspective and relief from the sometimes preposterous hits of the 1980s. I mean really, Michael Jackson stopping a gang knife fight? Really?



While artist like The Barenaked Ladies and Brad Paisley continue to inject humor into music, there is a certain amount of darkness and gravity in popular music. Thank God the clouds are breaking and it's okay to laugh again.

From "I'm On A Boat" to "D*&$ In A Box," Andy Samberg with help from Saturday Night Live has reintroduced to us how great it is to laugh at music.



Glee is showing us how the context can point out the absurdity of great pop music and watching people sing atrociously bad on American Idol is a little bit of Shadenfruede we've all enjoyed. We can't forget youtube.com which as disseminated more musical humor both intentional and unintentional than Weird Al could ever imagine.

2. Twilight Is Changing The Way We Listen To Music
The soundtrack to the Twilight film adaptations of the best-selling Stephanie Meyer vampire saga are actually soundtracks. These aren't corporate marketing tools laced with singles meants to cash out on a film. Remember soundtracks like Batman Forever that featured the Seal hit "Kiss From A Rose"? That sound was recorded before the film and had nothing to do with Batman.

But it's not the return of the "real" film soundtrack that is exciting but the deliberate integration of literature and music. If you go to the official Twilight website, Stephanie Meyers has playlists for each of the Twilight books. Fans are encouraged to listen to this music as they read the books and fans themselves create their own playlists.

Now you may not like Twilight or the music associated with this series but you to admit that the integration of these two art forms is an exciting developments in literature and music. When done right like in a great film, combining the right music with the right book has the potential to create deeper and more powerful artistic experiences.

I can't wait to buy a book that comes with its own soundtrack.

1. Music Can't Die.
The idea that "rock is dead" or any kind of music or art being "dead" is like saying that humanity is dead. This pessimistic viewpoint not only goes against music but ourselves, our potential, our hopes and our dreams.

Yes, there are ups and downs in music. Even at the best of times there is mediocre music in our popular culture but without fail great artists and great music remind us why we love music.

The only way that the people we love truly die is if we somehow exorcise their spirit from our being. This however is an impossibility because every moment, every conversation and every song not only influences who we are but is everything that we are.

Love the music you listen to and the listen to music that you love.

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