[Table of Contents]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [ARSCLIST] CD versus Download was "All hail the analogue revolution..."

Hello steven

On 02/10/06, steven c wrote:
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Don Cox" <doncox@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
>> In rock and pop, by and large the performer is the focus, and most of
>> the material is composed by the performers. So one might buy a studio
>> recording and a live concert recording, and that is it. 
> That is a practice which has only existed for just over (about) forty
> years! 

Sure. The rock-and-pop of the last 40 years is what I meant. That is
what most people listen to, or hear.

> IIRC, the Beatles were the first pop artists to write the vast
> majority of the tunes they recorded (and they had the advantage of
> being talented songwriters...one not granted to most of their ilk!)
> Prior to that point (even during the heyday of "rock'n'roll!") if
> one was a song PERFORMER one contacted a WRITER to see what songs
> might be available to record. The problem to-day is that for the
> most part being a talented performer does NOT guarantee that one
> is an equally talented songwriter!
>> For a Beethoven sonata, or a Cole Porter song, each performer has
>> something different to tell you about the music, as each actor does
>> about Hamlet or Macbeth. Add to that the changes in performance
>> styles over the years, and it does make sense to own several versions
>> of a major work.
> See above...
>> Whether it makes sense to buy the latest offering by some young
>> "star" at full price, I doubt.
> It probably doesn't. Many "stars" are selected by record-industry
> "honchos" for reasons that have little or nothing to do with their
> musical talent (or, usually, lack thereof...) but simply seem to
> offer a possibility of selling large amounts of "product!"
> As well, as recorded music more and more becomes a product of
> technology, as opposed to any extant musical talent, the resulting
> "product" takes on a distinct similarity...again, aimed at saleability
> as opposed to musical quality. At some point in the not-too-distant
> future, it may be possible to create "superstars" that exist only
> as bytes and bits somewhere in the half-vast "IT Division!"
>> I think the number of listeners to classical music is increasing, not
>> decreasing. Comparing an issue of The Gramophone from the 70s to a
>> current issue, there are far more releases, ten times as many labels,
>> and no shortage of excellent new recordings. After all, there is more
>> money around today than there was then.
> But...the demand is primarily for the same relative handful of
> familiar classical works!

It can't be. Look at the lists of new releases. 

>  I assume there are still classical works
> being composed... however, I would guess they are either extensively
> derivative of older classical music...or so experimantal as to sail
> over the heads of the potential purchasers. 

There is plenty still being composed. The older living composers such as
John Adams, Steve Reich or Peter Maxwell Davies are quite popular.

> Most of what is heard on
> classical-music radio is at the very least close to a century
> old...and generally two to four centuries old...

It is the cream of the productions of the past few centuries.
Eventually, the cream of the late 20C will join it. 

>> > 
>> > Hey, my sympathies are with you. It's the same with jazz -- aside
>> > from the fact that the genre has been hijacked to large extent by
>> > the "museum music" crowd.
>> I think jazz pretty well died when it became a genre. 
> Jazz began to die out when be-bop made it 1) more introspective than
> entertaining, and 2) effectively impossible to dance to! In fact, that
> is why "dixieland jazz" still survives...simple, often familiar tunes,
> an obvious and ear-catching rhythm listeners can dance or clap their
> hands to...and a sense of fun! Note that all of these qualities are
> either absent or hard-to-hear in, say, a Coltrane album/performance...

Yet Coltrane sells well and appeals to many listeners who have no
interest at all in early jazz. Likewise Miles Davis or Monk.

I think the problem comes with musicians have studied jazz at
college. It can be very academic.

> One interesting side thought (on which I have so far no opinion...)
> As a "survivor" of the sixties, I lived through (and enjoyed, as
> near as I can remember) the musical developments that were both
> inspired (for the artists) and enjoyed (for the listeners) by
> the "mind-altering" drugs of the period. Now, the "drug of choice"
> for jazz musicians for most, if not all, of the pre-WWII period
> was, of course, good ol' C2H5OH (or, during prohibition, occasionally
> CH3OH...). During the "bop era" and thereafter, many jazz musicians
> were into heroin and similar opiates. What effect did that have on
> how jazz developed...?!

Louis Armstrong was a steady smoker of marijuana. I think it makes
little difference except when a jail sentence spoils a person's career.

Don Cox

[Subject index] [Index for current month] [Table of Contents]