Tuesday, August 16, 2011

food for thought

I recently made friends with Jason Lev, the man behind that superb Canadian label Truth Is Light, actually I bought some killer tunes from him. So I happened to check out his label's website and it's blog (something you should do too - here and here) and I read at the bottom of the current page a quick post which references another post on Francois Kervorkian's blog, where the man talks about a feeling he has about the current state of things musical. Here's what he says... 

"One thing that is seriously getting me puzzled has to do with the trivialization of so many things due to computers and software. Distributed intelligence, that sort of stuff?

Don’t get me wrong, I use the stuff all the time, live it, breathe it… But it would appear that there could be a parallel between the tools becoming so incredibly powerful, yet the content of most music not quite ‘resonating’ as much as it used to anymore, and us as a group collectively becoming less sensitive from the overload?
Is it the sheer volume of new things being posted daily, or the fact that music itself has lost some of the deep and subliminal hold it had on our collective consciousness? Less emotional content in new music because of the tools used to create it? Not sure.

Would love to see translated examples of 20-year old kids rushing to the store to get a certain song, or picking someone’s brain all night until morning to discover more about some producers or groups.

Maybe it used to be that there were a lot of local scenes, with long incubation periods which led to specific styles and genres slowly being created, a differentiation which has mostly vanished with today’s globalized, homogeneous music cultures and planetary-scaled sharing engines?

No more mystery, and quests? Just accelerated, exponential growth with no buffer time to even absorb and digest what is out there. So the qualities that stick are those of a song that can make an immediate impression, rather than from one that might take several rounds of listening to reveal its more delicate and subtle beauty?

Again, parallel to Darwinism, and what it might mean for the evolution of music."

He's right on the money. What he says about 'incubation periods' both in production time and the sheer volume of releases hitting store shelves on a weekly basis is acutely insightful. How much time do we really have to let a track or an album sink in before we're asked to check out something newer? Obviously I count myself amongst those who's journey into music is both forward and backward looking, this increases the volume of music to get through, to live with, to revel in. Writing this blog has highlighted the issue in a different way, but with the same confusing result; If I don't post something, I loose readers and yet I have no desire to put anything up that I'm not feeling. But it also takes time to gain a proper insight into a track (if indeed it's worth spending time with at all) and there isn't always time. Ironically I'm also aware some readers will find this very post, a solid block of text (sans pay off download at the end), intimidating or tedious even and not bother to read it at all. The main thing is I love doing it regardless of how many people are reading what ever I might rant about and it helps remind me of my original fan status. It takes some doing to find that original excitement about music, in order to give an individual track or album the proper listen it often deserves. food for thought...

4 comments:

Jay Negron said...

I agree with Francios TOTALLY!!!
I'm 55 years old and remember when as DJs we used to flock to the record shops, record company lobbies, import stores for the next NEW Jam!!!

No computers, no cell phones, No technology software for edits;
Just good ole Razor & Tape!!!!

chris keys said...

yeah! going to the shops to get your records is still one of my favourite things ever. sadly there are no real record stores in jhb anymore...

bokut said...

and so....would that be the fate of music along its evolutionary path? quite scary....

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