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Re: [ARSCLIST] Recording rates for musicians.

Steven Barr wrote:

There is, of course, a subgroup (and has been since the
substantial development of commercial "pop" music) who
follow and support "folk" music (in the actual sense of
that term, not the recent commercial use which sees any
musician using an acoustic instrument for self-accompaniment
designated as a "folksinger"...this latter use is mainly
intended to establish where recordings are displayed in
Well, that's really old isn't it!? Look at all the misappropriated music of blues players (black guys who had NO legal recourse). Led Zeppelin made a career of it..
Now, there is no doubt that the "cream" of classical
musicians have tremendous skill and talent on their
chosen imstrument(s). In fact, I think that is true of
the "cream" of any genre...I find that B.B. King, for
one, can express himself emotionally through subtleties
in his guitar playing (and I try to do that in my
harmonica playing). However, in any genre there exist
musicians who know the "mechanics" of their instrument,
and play any note or sequence of notes they can read
from music or memorize as a sequence of physical
actions. What they CAN'T do is translate emotion into
a series of sounds made using these instrument. Finally,
we have the limited players...who have learned the basics of playing their instrument and little if
anything more. Some may improve further with time
and experience...but some won't.

I don't think there's much of a cream in modern pop music. The cream is all the hair product being used. On the other hand... There are some incredibly talented engineers and producers that can take no talent hacks like Britney Spears and make her marketable. I humbly point to Quincy Jones as a prime example of such a genius. He can make anything sound good. Pure genius.
And there are also other things that are harder to define.
For example, none of the four Beatles were spectacular as
players of their instrunments...but, when they were
gathered together (and provided with the aid and expertise
of George Martin) the results were a memorable sound!

I slightly disagree. By "the end", they were pretty sound players. Ringo could keep time better than his more talented rock stablemates like John Bonham. Just as part of a rhythm section, he got to be pretty good (my standard is Al Jackson Jr.). Paul played some pretty nice bass lines (unless they flew Carol Kaye to England). George could come up with well thought out solos and good hooks. And they could write catchy tunes. If they'd been born 100 years sooner, perhaps they'd have become a Schubert or Wolf.
Since the entertainment
industry seems to prefer trying to improve the saleability of
their existing talent, rather than search for new talent...and
since the saleability of individuals can depend on many
qualities other than actual talent...there are no guarantees
that those who are the most famous and thus the best paid
are actually superior to the rest of the group!
Amazing how they like to shape musicians into something they THINK the public wants to see. It reminds me of Willie Nelson (just the first guy who came to mind). The guys at RCA didn't know what to do with him. It was a very long time (15 years?) before they let Willie be Willie...at another label.
And those whose talent lie completely outside the entertainment
field...say, the best plumber in all of the state of New York...
are minimally paid in relation to athletes and entertainers,
and in some cases, are paid no better...if as well...to a
less-talented member of their milieu...?!

Steven C. Barr

Don't forget teachers, librarians, firemen....

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