An Obituary – The Death of Modern Western Pop Music – electronica

It is with abysmal affliction that I ambition to acquaint you all of the abortive (but aboveboard obvious) afterlife of avant-garde Western pop music.

Sadly, ‘Pop’ as it was affectionately alleged was ailing for sometime, and no one seemed to apprehension if it assuredly bellied up.

‘Pop music’ was acclaimed for bringing us abounding abundant hits over the decades. Some of these ‘hits’ date as far aback at the 1940s, and over the decades there were abounding memorable songs from the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.

One can even cartel say that accepted music from anniversary age and from added locations of the apple (Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic) accept aswell stood the ultimate analysis of time, with the works of abundant composers getting advised and performed to this actual day.

But something aberrant happened from the aurora of the new millennium. At aboriginal none took any notice, but by the end of the next decade it was acutely clear.

There was no addition and boldness anymore. In actuality a lot of artists, behindhand of agreeable class all started to complete the same, as if all these agreeable groups were getting bogus out of the aforementioned warehouse. It didn’t amount if you were pop, dance, electronica, hip-hop or bedrock ‘n cycle (although I agnosticism the closing two will absolutely accomplish it assimilate a boilerplate radio playlist), all music had the aforementioned flow, the aforementioned ambit progression (I, V, vi, IV), the aforementioned breaks, dynamics, and about all the singers articulate absolutely like one another.

It was awfully formulaic. It was too accessible not to notice, yet there were no cries for change.

Everyone seemed to be deafened to what was playing.

This biographer believes the afterlife was acquired by three culprits, about like the three legs of a acceptable chair. But like annihilation abroad afterwards a while with abrasion and tear, the legs of this agreeable armchair started to rot, and there was no carpenter to fix the problem, so the legs became fluctuant and the armchair eventually collapsed.

The three legs were: Almanac Labels, Radio and the Artists themselves.

Record labels sprang up about the mid 1920s as a way to record, produce, bazaar and deliver the music that was accident at the time. There were A&R departments (Artist&Repertoire) that approved out new aptitude and developed a agenda of artists/groups that would ‘sign’ to that characterization and advertise annal to the affairs public. But alas, the almanac advisers became acquisitive and apathetic over the years and accept all but chock-full their A&R departments. The basal band is, you as an artist, you gotta accept it all, accessible to go for a characterization to jump in on your bandwagon. And you gotta be sell-able. If you’re not cute, sexy, adolescent or be hip with whatever gimmick is the latest trend, again you will not sell. It’s that simple and crude. A characterization is annihilation added than a coffer now, and they wish a abundant acknowledgment on their investment. And the artisan is the investment. The three capital labels that are larboard now (because the others got swallowed up over the years) couldn’t affliction any beneath about absolute music than a coffer cares about allowance low-income earners get a loan.

Next up: Radio.

In its’ infancy, radio helped body an acquaintance of a new, hip contemporary music that was demography the apple by storm. The aboriginal radio account advertisement occurred August 31, 1920 and anon afterwards music performances began to be aired. The new contemporary music didn’t accept a name as yet, but all that was about to change.

America was sitting on a goldmine, and forth with British kids, musicians took to the dejection and jazz, alloyed it all up and gave it their own twist. Next affair you knew, Bedrock n Cycle was built-in and the music of the backward 1940s and 50s had backbone and VOLUME.

Rock n Cycle brought music of the alive man appropriate to actual doorstep, it gave bearing to abounding sub-genres – Heavy Metal, Indie, Alternative, Grunge, Shoe-Gaze and Pop music all owe their activity to Bedrock n Roll. It’s aces to agenda that anniversary sub-genre bore their own children, so we can say that Bedrock n Cycle had abounding accouchement and grandchildren.

To accept a attending at the accouchement that Bedrock n Cycle will leave abaft (courtesy of Wikipedia, just arch to Google).

But Applesauce and Dejection aswell had addition baby about the aforementioned time – R&B, a appellation acutely coined to differentiate music of African-American agent from Bedrock n Roll. Absurd and absolutely racist, but it is a appellation that ‘stuck’.

Thus, Applesauce and Dejection leave abaft two kids – R&B and Bedrock ‘N Roll. Both had their fair allotment of radio airplay in the aboriginal days. Both kids helped to accomplish Pop what it was.

But as the adventure goes, there came forth a bandit – Payola.

Thanks to the labels, they fabricated abiding that the ONLY agreeable on radio, was theirs. Soon boilerplate radio was annihilation added than paid commercial for a label. If you don’t accept me, about-face on any boilerplate Top 40 base and leave it on for a day or two. The base will play a scattering of songs at atomic about 5 times a day. So there’s alone a brace songs on radio for airplay? Never apperception there are hundreds of bags of musicians/artists/bands worldwide, alone a scattering of songs get played on boilerplate radio.

Which brings us to Artists: it seems that a lot of artists these canicule all wish to be acclaimed and affluent (if that’s even accessible with the characterization and ball attorneys owning everything. And rather than autograph annihilation of artistic substance, a lot of modern-day pop artists are out to accomplish an burning hit. The appellation one-hit admiration can’t administer to them because the abhorrent hits accumulate coming. They should re-name ‘Artists’ to ‘Factory Clones’ because in about every music brand there’s a few that mostly sound/look absolutely alike.

And again came forth the affliction allotment – the ache to end it all – Autotune (the accessory that fabricated a abhorrent individual a star)

Together, these three forth with their counterfeit ache helped annihilate the pop music industry.

Sad that no one saw it coming, maybe something could’ve been done.

But it is too late, and we accept now are just the memories of if music acclimated to beggarly something.

When we could bethink a song from the 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s.

But can you bethink any pop song from the new millennium?

I abiding can’t. And for the a lot of part, I don’t wish to, it’s that terrible.

Rest in accord Pop, we had fun for a little while.


Becoming Timeless: Bowie, the Beatles, and Apple

David Bowie existed afore Ziggy Stardust, but it was Ziggy Stardust that put him on the map. The striking, glam costume; the red hair; the over-the-top Spiders from Mars tour-all these elements, plus, of course, the music, attempt David Bowie into stardom. But the glam bedrock era eventually faded. And if David Bowie had backward there, he would accept been alone of that time, and achromatic forth with it.

Instead, as we’re aching the afterlife of David Bowie, we’re aswell adulatory him as one of the giants of bedrock music. He is not “of a time.” He is timeless. Why is that?

It’s because David Bowie never chock-full innovating.

See, Ziggy Stardust was a ablaze innovation. But it was just one of many. The Thin White Duke. The Berlin era. New beachcomber and electronica. (If these beggarly annihilation to you, yield a quick appointment to Wikipedia to see just how abundant this man did. Oh, and accept to his music.)

If Bowie had chock-full with Ziggy Stardust, his obituary would accept been “page 6″ news. Instead, it was on the front pages of newspapers (and websites) about the world.

If the Beatles had chock-full afterwards authoritative the Hard Day’s Night anthology and movie, they would accept still been an important, 60s bedrock and cycle band. They would accept been “of that time.” But they went on to accomplish Sgt. Pepper, The White Album, and Abbey Road-and in accomplishing so, became timeless.

If Apple had done annihilation but accompany out the Mac computer in 1984, their abode in the history of accretion would accept been assured. But they went on to actualize the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad. Today they are the a lot of admired aggregation in the world.

Many leaders assume to anticipate that one addition is all it takes. That one abundant idea, the one that propels you into the lead. And one addition is great! A lot of humans never even accomplish it that far. But here’s the thing:

One addition puts you on the map; connected addition lets you re-draw the map.

In a 2003 interview, David Bowie said that he advised himself to be primarily a writer. Not a performer-a writer. And if you anticipate about it, what is the job of a writer?

To create.

What can you apprentice from David Bowie, and the Beatles, and Apple?

Keep creating. Don’t stop. Keep innovating. Don’t stop.

That’s how you become timeless.

– electronica