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Just Damn Cute
 Post subject: Re: Surprisingly low standards in music
PostPosted: Thu Jan 06, 2011 3:46 pm GMT 
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Oh I totally agree with that, she's just an easy example of main stream music that isn't totally superficial. And most of her deeper meanings, are very personal to her not so much to everyone else.

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 Post subject: Re: Surprisingly low standards in music
PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 11:04 pm GMT 
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Artemis Selene wrote:
Oh I totally agree with that, she's just an easy example of main stream music that isn't totally superficial. And most of her deeper meanings, are very personal to her not so much to everyone else.


Definitely. And I agree with you too Silvanus, but I don't know how to quote more than one person. Another example though could be KT Tunstall. I just LOVE her music. Well, some of it. I like Dark Horse and a Cherry Tree, Hold On, and Suddenly I See. I haven't had a chance to listen to the others because of some copywrite issues, so I don't know if I love those as much, but those songs I've mentioned have some interesting not-so-obvious meanings to them, I think. But then again, this is just what I think and you guys could think I'm horribly wrong, but that's very much how music, poetry, lyrics, writing go.

Also there's Dr. Horrible. You could see it as just him pining after Penny, but there's also the question of which of his ambitions he wants most, is he really happy at the end, how does one really become happy, are the things you get as good as they seem, how well patience can pay off, etc. etc. etc. Anyway, there's a ton of stuff out there, these are just some examples.


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 Post subject: Re: Surprisingly low standards in music
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 3:28 pm GMT 
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Without reading all the replies (and at the risk of reiterating someone else's comments) here's my thoughts:

Art always reflects the culture it's created in, and a saturation of sex/drugs/violence-themed music gives a good indication of where that culture stands. This is particularly true on the topic of rap, which can be considered the product of a sub-culture.

Personally, I try to avoid bands that regularly use profanity in their songs. For example, I love Linkin Park's first two albums (for a couple of reasons), but Minutes to Midnight indicated a huge shift for them on many levels, including the use of the F-word. I just find it unnecessary and (occasionally) offensive.

But no, vulgarity in music (and all forms of entertainment) is not new, or even recent. It is an indicator of the long-working degradation of culture, and of human nature in general. Look at Rome. You'll see a surprisingly familiar pattern there which can apply to just about every society that has existed before or since.


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Domestic Goddess
 Post subject: Re: Surprisingly low standards in music
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 9:51 pm GMT 
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Yeah I always fear our Rome moment is going to come sooner than later >___>

Like metroidkillah, there's quite a few groups and artists I really liked, and I'm extremely dissapointed they felt that they needed to stoop down to sex and profanity because they think that it will make them more popular, when their stuff was great in the first place. Not everyone is destined to be a super music star, and if you have to lower your standards to try to get there, that's really sad. All you're going to do is lose the fans you did have, because they preferred you as an alternative to all the garbage out there and now you've become apart of it. Seether is one that comes in mind to me (I had no idea Linkin Park did that O_o I haven't listened to their newer stuff though). Seether did some awesome songs without any profanity or anything super graphic, but still had the cool sound. Then they come out with a dirty song and it's like :( I just lost all respect. And their popularity REALLY did take a nosedive after that single came out. They pretty much disappeared into the background.

Did Miley Cyrus get more popular for her stunts and stupid girl act? Publicity, yes. Fans? She lost them. I wish there was a way we could get this out to the artists, I'm sure a lot of people feel this way, but as long as sex and crime still sells, the message is never gonna get there @_@

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 Post subject: Re: Surprisingly low standards in music
PostPosted: Wed Feb 09, 2011 11:30 pm GMT 
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Well, I have to ask why profanity is really all that bad. I mean, if an entire song is just a swear work, I can see one being frustrated, but I think people would be equally frustrated with a song that's just "badger" over and over again. Although, if used appropriately, it can add to a sense of frustration/anger/sadness/etc. that the singer may be trying to evoke.

The problem though, is that I haven't listened to those songs nor do I know what Miley Cyrus does that's a stupid-girl act. So... yeah. Links/descriptions? That'd help me understand your side a little better.


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Domestic Goddess
 Post subject: Re: Surprisingly low standards in music
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:42 pm GMT 
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Oh Miley has pulled a lot of stunts since her desire to be separated from her Hannah Montana image was popular knowledge. She's done nude shots, she was giving a lap dance to some middle age dude, grinding someone else, used a bong, made a few highly racy singles/music videos. Basically all the pathetic screaming for attention stuff young celebrities stoop down to doing to stay in the spotlight. I understand she probably no longer wants to be associated with her child star image, but she's no Brittney Spears. I dunno how but despite all the stunts she's pulled over the years she still has quite a fanbase. Miley was a Disney star, not a major pop sensation. She'll start fading out to nothing just as Lindsay Lohan did... And well, we all know what happened to her....

And personally I don't see the need for especially gritty or hateful songs. I'm just not a fan. I don't like songs that encourage mass profanity and violence as ways to get your anger out and that its ok. And of course, I don't care for super sexually explicit songs. It's like artwork, there's a tasteful way to do it and there's an erotic/porno way. And what you hear on the radio is very rarely of the former.

Music is a very powerful tool. Through it, so many different ideas and view points can be viewed and embraced. Most of the time we sing along to a song without truly thinking of the lyrics. And that allows us to become desensitized to things. The power of a good melody is really awe inspiring.

Think of that song Love The Way You Lie. It's on the radio all the time. It's pretty catchy, you hear it all the time so you start to sing along without really thinking anymore then it's a catchy tune. What's the song really about? A guy who beats his girlfriend, gets high off of it, gets upset about it, and the cycle continues. The girl hates him, but "loves the way he lies.". The girl won't leave him because she's attracted to that bad aspect that is apparently good in her mind. When you read between the lines, though its a very realistic depiction of a struggle that goes on in many abusive relationships that is very real, it could be seen as glorifying abuse. Would you really want to sing that if the message was plain as day and wasn't covered up by a bunch of clever and catching rhymes?

That's just my opinion. There are a lot of songs I've enjoyed and sung along to because they sound good, that when I take the time to examine the lyrics I'm singing and glorifying things that I say I don't like and that I don't want to do.

And honestly, while there are ways to block and control what comes on the TV (parental controls, if people used them), there isn't on the radio. I'd really not like to turn on the radio and here Fuck Her Softly (yes it actually gets played on the radio, with the word bleeped out). If they have to sensor the main topic of the song, it doesn't belong on the radio. A song where they say "shit" one time is one thing, but like, the Bottoms Up song, they take out all the parts glorifying alcohol and its a song about alcohol. That's kinda stupid.

I usually don't like to side with those for heavy censoring, as I beleive people can and listen to what they want, it's their choice, it'd just be nice to not have this crap on general radio. You can put whatever you want on satellite radio as it's a paid service >__>

Again this is just my opinion. I really don't like my 7 & 11 year old cousins singing songs about rape when they have no idea what that is. It's kinda creepy.

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 Post subject: Re: Surprisingly low standards in music
PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 11:22 am GMT 
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So I don't mean to bring an old rant back to life, but I want to say that after a lot of thought and reading a lot of other things people have written on this subject, I now wholeheartedly agree that violent lyrics should not be in songs that kids listen to, and should not be glorified in any song.

One other thing that's worse about Love the Way you Lie is that the girl is sung by Rhianna, who, um, actually WAS beaten by her boyfriend. So I suppose we're to take that she likes it? Yeah. I think it's awful.


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 Post subject: Re: Surprisingly low standards in music
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 9:08 am GMT 
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I don't mind sex in my music. I don't mind violence, drugs, or profanity - as long as no one listening is under the age of 13. I don't mind any of that, and I don't understand why some of you are bothered by the mere presence of it - but I understand how that presence can be loathsome.

Because you know what I do mind? All of the above through the understanding and interpretation of an idiot.

In a word, tastelessness - it is where fun turns into hedonism, sensuous turns into vulgar, violence turns into gornography, and sound becomes noise - it is where the point of the sound is smudged, and music becomes pointless vibrations.

This is the fount of your irritation: tastelessness. Look at everything you despise - you think you despise it for sax&violins? Look at the things you like that feature such things - what makes you overlook it? Presentation. That's the important thing - most especially in music.

In a medium in which, by nature, the target is emotion instead of thought, how something is presented is always more important than what is actually presented. Because that is what gets to people. That's one of the many things that make music special - it's abstract. More than any other medium, interpretation and subjectivity remain supreme.

And it's taste that can make the most vulgar of things seem refined, and the most refined of ways so ostentatious, and crass. And thus, you get people like the Beatles, who can make a dreary, pointless day in the life so rich, and affecting, and on the other end of the spectrum, Jason Derulo, who made this song: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/jasonderulo/trumpets.html

That's a love song - mother of God, that's a love song.

And about hip-hop.

Hip-hop culture was born out of the restlessness of living on scraps in a society where the rich get richer and the poor get screwed - by the rich, and by themselves. It was born from rage and boredom - disenfranchisement is the word. Distrust in greater society, non-acceptance of an unaccepting world. And the music reflected that.

It was gross, and smelly, and violent - charismatic, but angry, aggressive - is that not the inner city? Does that not sound like the cry from the starving, discontent masses of the wealthiest country on Earth? Constantly barraged from above by the Man, from around by the gangs, and from within by the clash of hope and hopelessness in a coarse world after the death of the American Dream - do you expect these people to feel like making Boogie Wonderland? Or would they rather find a way to reflect the ugliness of society onto their art? That is hip-hop - it is the music of the disenfranchised.

And then the sound was capitalized upon. The voice was packaged for mass consumption - disenfranchisement becomes the biggest, shiniest franchise there is. The revolution was televised.

And that is how you get %$*# like Chris Brown polluting the airways - that is where I draw the line. Look at the lyrics to any of his songs post-Rihanna-face-smash - he's capitalized on bouncing back from beating on his tiny, 19-year old girlfriend by being even more of a d-bag! Everything is misogynistic ego-stroking with him! And his fans are encouraging this kind of behaviour. Some are outright denying that he did anything wrong!

Oh my god, I hate him so, so much! Why is he still here - it doesn't make sense! Any of his songs, you could replace him with a better singer, a better personality - yet he's still here. Why?

And on a final note: it's 2017, and the state of music is ... odd.

Radio's barely limping along, and music as a corporate entity seems to be losing much of its power. Internet piracy has become the main means of music for a lot of people these days, so these days, mainstream be damned, people listen to what they want. The sound has become so boring and uninfluential that popular music seems to be comatose - it seems like something, anything should've made a Nirvana moment by now, but nothing's come up yet. Nothing new in pop. Nothing interesting. No new genres for the public to latch onto. It's just the same old, same old at this point.

Look at the Billboard Top 10 in June 2017 - anything you expect to see in 2027? 37? 50? Big Music has lost its power - the only real big pop star in the world left are Ariana and Taylor Swift, and neither have done much of anything recently - the other big names are Drake, who hasn't been all that interesting, Ed Sheeran who makes goddamn folk music - nothing at all wrong with that, but nobody's gonna latch on to that as a trend, that's not gonna change the current status quo, soon - and Bruno Mars, who only makes throwback stuff now.

Anyway, I'll just go and try to brush up on my 80s J-Funk.

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