"Music isn't as good as it was back in my day"
"I wish I was born in the 70s/80s"
"Music is all about auto-tuning and looks now."
"There is no real music of today"
These are just a few of the comments that makes me want to shout...
Around the UK someone somewhere is complaining - (No surprise there) about the current music of today. Usually every month or so there's some celebrity or near celebrity complaining about modern music and teenagers, and it's getting to the point where it's getting a little bit silly. Every so often the tabloid dribbles it's own thesis, and even some of my dear friends have fallen into the trap of believing that music really is getting worse. Even I joined in believing the statement so blindly that is, until I went to university and listened to different kinds of music I had never heard before. And so, to make a change to the usual Yellow Kokoro standard, I'm going to challenge both statements.
"Music is getting worse"
Firstly, technology and the Internet has made music production a whole lot easier, and there is certainly a heck of a lot more music out there to listen to. All you Gothic rockers out there who criticise that "mainstream music" is a load of poo, well it could very turn out that your precious 'alternative' rock may as well be a mainstream genre for all the contributions it receives on a day to day basis around the world. With so much choice, you're bound to find some kind of sound you like - where in the past there was a time where you'd have to stick with the Beatles or cover your ears.
Because of technology new sounds can be made and thus new genres can be born - and well, if you don't like that kind of music - you can always go back to the more concrete and older genres - "older style" music is still being produced - and if you still, really, really can't stand any new bands or artists that come along in your preferred idea of your favourite genre, then you can just listen to your old music. Bob Dylan's albums and singles are still making money and the 70s and 80s have been able to secure track immortality. Since you can obtain a digital form of "older style" music, music can never essentially be "worse" for you. Instead it remains the same.
"I wish I was born in the 70s"
Do you really wish to be born into a world with a worse health care, less choice of music (and much more expensive means of obtaining music), and (for the UK readers among us...) Margaret Thatcher?
I didn't think so.
"Music is all about auto-tuning now..."
A lot of music do use auto-tuning, but again, there is as much music available that doesn't. Auto-tuning is interesting stuff - and some great songs wouldn't be able to exist without it. Just because a singer in the charts uses it in his or her songs, doesn't mean you have to worry about your precious genres becoming extinct. Recently there has been a trend of 'unplugged' versions of familiar songs - especially with newer bands who want an increase in popularity and admiration.
"Music is all about looks now"
Music has always been on par with style and image, even during the classical-music period. Lets take Adam and the Ants for example.
Sure, some bands of today have a less than desirable image compared to Adam, and some female artists wear rather disapproving outfits but-- That's society for you - and as there is SO much music around, you're going to find decent females who don't look like they're from a late night club down the road. (and for the record, I'm mentioning 'those' kind of clubs.)
To be fair, I have to say that some bands are focusing a little too much on their nails and less on the sound.
And I'm not talking about American or European bands here, I'm mentioning my beloved Visual Kei. Suddenly I've just woken up the jrock readers here.
Recently, a lot of new bands have emerged from the Visual Kei scene with an exciting image, only for their tracks to sound the same as the previous dozen bands that debuted a month or two before them. Please freshen up Visual Kei genres...
Saying that, there will always be good old Kra to turn back to, and Dada-san from Velvet Eden who is always contributing to music and usually making a post or two on facebook...
And some good bands will eventually be born out of the dead buds...
"There is no real music of today"
If you truly believe that - you cannot love music. There has never been a year of outstanding quality and quirkiness when it comes down to music and new sound - you've just got to find it. And next year is just going to get even better....