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pop music DOES all sound the same

GUEST,HiLo 06 Oct 19 - 08:37 AM
Steve Shaw 06 Oct 19 - 05:32 AM
GUEST,Starship 05 Oct 19 - 10:04 PM
Steve Shaw 05 Oct 19 - 08:39 PM
Jim Carroll 05 Oct 19 - 03:45 AM
GUEST,Richard Robinson 04 Oct 19 - 09:14 AM
punkfolkrocker 04 Oct 19 - 07:35 AM
Jim Carroll 04 Oct 19 - 06:26 AM
JHW 04 Oct 19 - 05:47 AM
Steve Shaw 04 Oct 19 - 04:11 AM
Jim Carroll 04 Oct 19 - 03:40 AM
Richard Mellish 04 Oct 19 - 02:38 AM
Steve Shaw 03 Oct 19 - 07:54 PM
Jack Campin 03 Oct 19 - 03:08 PM
Steve Shaw 03 Oct 19 - 12:43 PM
punkfolkrocker 03 Oct 19 - 12:41 PM
Jim Carroll 03 Oct 19 - 12:26 PM
Richard Mellish 03 Oct 19 - 12:10 PM
JHW 03 Oct 19 - 12:08 PM
GUEST,Phil d'Conch 03 Oct 19 - 11:40 AM
Steve Shaw 02 Oct 19 - 06:32 PM
Steve Shaw 02 Oct 19 - 06:12 PM
GUEST,HiLO 02 Oct 19 - 05:43 PM
GUEST,Starship 02 Oct 19 - 04:02 PM
keberoxu 02 Oct 19 - 03:10 PM
GUEST,Phil d'Conch 02 Oct 19 - 03:06 PM
Jack Campin 02 Oct 19 - 03:00 PM
Jim Carroll 02 Oct 19 - 02:47 PM
punkfolkrocker 02 Oct 19 - 02:21 PM
Jim Carroll 02 Oct 19 - 01:54 PM
Jim Carroll 02 Oct 19 - 01:38 PM
Bill D 02 Oct 19 - 01:32 PM
punkfolkrocker 02 Oct 19 - 01:09 PM
GUEST,HiLo 02 Oct 19 - 12:59 PM
Bonzo3legs 02 Oct 19 - 12:15 PM
Mrrzy 02 Oct 19 - 12:10 PM
Steve Shaw 02 Oct 19 - 11:46 AM
Nick 02 Oct 19 - 11:32 AM
GUEST 02 Oct 19 - 11:19 AM
Jim Carroll 02 Oct 19 - 11:08 AM
punkfolkrocker 02 Oct 19 - 10:57 AM
Jack Campin 02 Oct 19 - 10:48 AM
punkfolkrocker 02 Oct 19 - 09:59 AM
Jim Carroll 02 Oct 19 - 04:13 AM
Jim Carroll 02 Oct 19 - 04:12 AM
leeneia 02 Oct 19 - 12:51 AM
GUEST,keberoxu 01 Oct 19 - 06:40 PM
Desert Dancer 17 Sep 12 - 07:20 PM
GUEST,Stim 11 Aug 12 - 01:31 PM
GUEST,Blandiver 10 Aug 12 - 06:48 PM
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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 06 Oct 19 - 08:37 AM

I am also a "fan" of Carly Simon. She is very much under rated both as a performer and a as a songwriter. Two of My favourites are Boys In the Trees (the song, not the album) and Julie Through The Glass. Beautifully sung and lyrically   lovely.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Oct 19 - 05:32 AM

MM doesn't V. I fully agree!


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,Starship
Date: 05 Oct 19 - 10:04 PM

"And, since someone mentioned Metallica, I'd like to humbly suggest that their take on Whiskey In The Jar is worth a listen. It gave me the impression that they'd actually thought about the words, which doesn't happen often."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=boanuwUMNNQ&list=RDboanuwUMNNQ&start_radio=1

That take is heavily influenced by Thin Lizzy's 1973 rendition, imo. If Thin Lizzy gets an 8, Metalica doesn't deserve more than a 5. YMMV.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Oct 19 - 08:39 PM

I'm rather fond of Carly Simon, I confess, and would like to suggest a handful of her songs to the "pop is all the same" brigade. "You're So Vain" (obviously), "Anticipation" (my favourite of all), "Nobody Does It Better" (what a belter). Others may wish to add. She's a great singer, the arrangements are brilliant and the songs are as good as pop songs get, which is pretty good. I could go on to James Taylor and Carole King. You'll find variety and lyricism aplenty. My very favourite pop song of all time is Here Comes The Sun by the Beatles. Gentle, lyrical, meaningful, beautifully played and skilfully arranged. Hate it all by all means but diss it not. Somebody out there loves it and hates yours, and who's to say who has dominion? By the way, my main listening is to any Mozart and to middle- and late-period Beethoven, Bach, Gershwin, Bernstein, Ravel, Schumann, Manuel de Falla (Three-cornered Hat: wonderful), Albéniz, Vaughan Williams, Stravinsky and Sibelius and mo'. But I can't be a snob because I like some pop. I've even been known to indulge in playing and listening to traditional music. I'd far sooner play it than listen to it...

One of the greatest pianists and conductors of the 20th century, Vladimir Ashkenazy, said that music was a complete mystery to him. That's a lovely idea that I keep with me. It helps in keeping the mind open, I find.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 05 Oct 19 - 03:45 AM

"Any Brazilian mudcatters care to comment..."
All too busy shaving
Jim


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,Richard Robinson
Date: 04 Oct 19 - 09:14 AM

My take on the 'long coach journey' bit - is not a long coach journey, it was the middle of the night on Moniaive festival campsite, a few years back. Unexpectedly overheard stuff, anyway - people sleeping, silence rules, and, out of I-don't-know-where, someone sang "What's going on ?" (Marvin Gaye ? Not my specialist subject). Comments :-

a) it was a wonderful performance. Unaccompanied singing at its best, I was very happy to have heard it.

b) as a clarinettist, I prefer to leave The Words to be someone else's problem, but that is not a bland melody, nor entirely trivial. It works.

c) I have no idea whether the song is to be regarded as Pop Music or not. Or who might wish to do the regarding.


And, since someone mentioned Metallica, I'd like to humbly suggest that their take on Whiskey In The Jar is worth a listen. It gave me the impression that they'd actually thought about the words, which doesn't happen often. Yeah, okay, see b) above, so I'm contradicting myself.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 04 Oct 19 - 07:35 AM

"Syncopation as the fundamental basis of the music is tedious."

Any Brazilian mudcatters care to comment...

What.. there aren't any..??

They'd likely dismiss Northern hemisphere folk music
as too deadly dull, impotent, and rhythmically unsophisticated for them...???

They probably think it's music for grumpy old men to sit down and grow fat and lethargic to...??????

Crikey.. a lot of folks sure do get the wrong ideas about other folk's favourite kinds of music...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 04 Oct 19 - 06:26 AM

Don't know her Steve, but I'll try to get to (not in the Biblical sense of course)
My problem with many recommendations is that I feel it takes time to get to appreciate a singer fully - a single song seldom does that for me
Thanks
Jim


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: JHW
Date: 04 Oct 19 - 05:47 AM

Just goes to show; I was listening to that D.I.D but when that track came on and the soap opera style tumbling drums came in the radio went off.
We all like different stuff, fine.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 04 Oct 19 - 04:11 AM

"Amen to Richard's last sentence" - but you love jazz...?

Just listening to "Girl On Fire" by Alicia Keys on Desert Island Discs. Brilliant song, great vocal, smashing arrangement. One of the songs I did for the dance teacher. I love it!


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 04 Oct 19 - 03:40 AM

Amen to richard's last sentence as loud as anyone cares to trumpet it from the rooftops
My music is largely (but not by any means entirely) traditional
The non- folk music I like is largely that which requires individual skill, dexterity, variation and constant re-creativity
Today's pop music appears to be based on blanketed group sound - in the the vocal music, the words have become little more than repetitively meaningless appendages to the instrumentation
That's fine if you want to use it as a background (assuming that this is the kind of background that appeals to you) but the extreme volume that seems to be the norm excludes it from being any background I want in my life
I listened to a lot of pop music when I was young, but it was music I had to stop and listen to to fully appreciate
I still listen to the greats of popular music but nowadays they are the ones that came before I was interests - Ella, Billie Frank Sinatra... pre war giants
I've re-tried the ones I went out to buy, The Crickets, The Everly Brothers, Connie Francis... but find they have paled and become part of a past I used to occupy
The big leap forward when popular pop lost its tweeness and got some guts and provided excitment - little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis.... lasted for a time, but faded from lack of inventiveness and folk provided the stimulant and the opportunity to participate I needed to make music a part of my life
That's still here (as is much of the jazz I love)
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 04 Oct 19 - 02:38 AM

Me: "I understand that the production of such "music" usually starts with a "rhythm track" to which other layers are added."

Steve Shaw: "Sort of how baroque music is made then... "

Perhaps, but baroque music and many other genres have plenty of melody and harmony. Pop music (of the sort that I'm referring to) is built on a foundation of percussion.

My dislike of excessive percussion goes all the way back to early years at school, when the music teacher would play something on the piano and a whole class of kids would be bashing drums, tambourines or whatever. A good solo fiddler can produce a driving danceable rhythm with no need for percussion, bass or any "rhythm section" whatsoever.

The pop music (of the sort that I'm referring to) also usually has a heavy off beat. Syncopation as one ingredient of a complex structure is fine and dandy. Syncopation as the fundamental basis of the music is tedious.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 03 Oct 19 - 07:54 PM

All folk music is the same because they all sing down their noses with their fingers in their ears. All pop music is the same because they all sing with a mid-Atlantic accent. Just thought I'd mention it. And I should say that I don't believe a bloody word of it. Know why? Because, in my long and misspent life (pass the bloody corkscrew...), I've listened to both and discovered total shite and total nirvana in both. But at least I've listened.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jack Campin
Date: 03 Oct 19 - 03:08 PM

I understand that the production of such "music" usually starts with a "rhythm track" to which other layers are added.
Sort of how baroque music is made then...


There is a really good book of Renaissance and Baroque bass lines you can use to emulate Tin Pan Alley hacks like Monteverdi, Purcell and Bach - Martin Erhardt's "Upon a Ground". I'm slowly working my way through it using the a=415 version of the backing CD.

An unvarying basic rhythmic pattern is also common to the Middle Eastern art music I play every week - usul in Turkish, iqa' in Arabic.

Some of these grumpy-old-man comments remind of an anecdote from a rural autobiography where the writer described talking to an old farmworker who was complaining that you didn't hear birds singing any more. There was a lark swooping and twittering directly over his head throughout the conversation but he was too deaf to notice.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 03 Oct 19 - 12:43 PM

"I understand that the production of such "music" usually starts with a "rhythm track" to which other layers are added."

Sort of how baroque music is made then...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 03 Oct 19 - 12:41 PM

Counter to prevailing popular misconcetions..

Over the last decade a growing and profitable trend in the music equipment industry,
is development of increasingly advanced and affordable technology
enabling electric guitarist to achieve desired optimum tone and dynamics
at the lowest possible volume...

Arguably even quieter than banjos and some acoustic guitars...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 03 Oct 19 - 12:26 PM

"What I think is that you don't have to diss it if you don't like it."
No you don't, but it's not helped by the fact that it's becoming impossible to avoid it
My experiences in shops are the same as Richard's - you're left feeling that you have to send scouts ahead to find out how loud the music is on the PA systems (pretty much as you do to find if an unfamiliar folk club actually does folk song)
I walk out once and never go back - doesn't suit me and can't suit the shop - surely
The only thing that makes me angry is the ***** volume - pumped up over the point of distortion, more often than not
We have three traditional sessions in our small town on Saturday night - all catering for a different crowd in regular venues
right in the centre of the town is a disco venue - fine by me, except the volume is so high sometimes that it can be heard in the other three bars - a little 'impossible' for our best solo players
I've given up worrying about the damage being done to they youngsters' hearing - their choice, I'm afraid
'Pump up the volume' merchants should by locked in small, soundproofed cells and overdosed on their own medicine
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 03 Oct 19 - 12:10 PM

My experience of pop music is almost exclusively what is inflicted on me when I am shopping. Sometimes it drives me straight back out of the shop and makes me wonder why they seem happy to drive potential customers away. (I know, most of their target customers are oblivious to the "music" and some of them apparently can't bear silence.)

There is a strong beat provided by percussion, a very simple rhythm, hardly any melody, and about a dozen words sung umpteen times over.

I understand that the production of such "music" usually starts with a "rhythm track" to which other layers are added.

I understand from hearsay that not all pop music is like that. I also understand that the many sub-genres really do have differences, but what I encounter and try to avoid mostly sounds much the same.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: JHW
Date: 03 Oct 19 - 12:08 PM

I'd agree with 'I don't need graphs to tell me that the pop music I hear in public places lacks melody and other forms of musical interest.'
I've wondered something else as I am fed such background music today (7 years later than that post).
Can today's kids all read the dots? I assume they must be able to or how could they sing song after song with no discernable melody.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
Date: 03 Oct 19 - 11:40 AM

...heavy metal, punk ,rap, and goth... &c consumers would not self identify as pop music consumers. Each of these genre market rebelling, to one extent or another, against pop culture as part of their cache.

If you're in the business of producing pop music you'll know who you're target demographic is. It hasn't changed since the beginning.

Doesn't mean they're all evil, or bad people. They're just consumers like everybody else.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 06:32 PM

"I might even... now & then... find one that is relatively interesting or vaguely pleasant. But I am simply not familiar enough with most 'pop' to bother sorting thru 100 to find 1 or 2."

Well same here, Bill, but, as I was saying, I was obliged to "sort through" hundreds via signing up to help that dance teacher. And it was an eye-opener. I won't be investing in pop CDs any time soon (though my copies of Beatles and Queen albums, along with the odd Dolly Parton, Abba and Mamas and Papas compilations, enjoy a permanent and treasured presence in my glove box...), though I did find that, among the dross, there is much that is genuinely original, well-wrought and beautifully produced. It's just that you don't have to like it...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 06:12 PM

Well said. What I think is that you don't have to diss it if you don't like it. As for the money side of things, well a great conductor of Wagner, a composer I hate to pieces, can make enough dough from a few night's' gigs to buy my house. A player for the greatest team in footballing history, Liverpool FC (argue and you might get "a visit..."), can make enough money in one week that would allow me, my brother and my sister to retire in luxury for life. It's called CAPITALISM. You can think of plenty more examples. So it's invidious to single out pop music for its cynical money-making. Of course it's like that. But that's the world we've acquiesced in, unless we're lifelong rabid Marxists who've eschewed all modern conveniences and still shit in pit latrines and ride donkeys into town.

Ps. Try "Symphony" by Clean Bandit...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,HiLO
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 05:43 PM

Well, they are not predominately teenage girls. the most successful ohas always been driven by boys and men in the 18/24 age bracket. heavy metal, punk ,rap, and goth are almost exclusively male driven. the current crop of female pop stars, Taylor Swift,Adele and so on, are a great sign that pop is now celebrating more and more female pop stars And,as I said, they are passionate, talented and successful....and they are not all the same. their “sin” , seems to be that they make money..they also make music which will be the” folk” of their generation. give credit where it is due...please.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,Starship
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 04:02 PM

I think it was Kendall Morse who said something along the lines of "All Indians walk in single file. I know that because just yesterday I saw an Indian and s/he was walking in single file."


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: keberoxu
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 03:10 PM

I'm delighted to see some dust
getting kicked up on this question,
whether or not the opinions are like my opinion.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 03:06 PM

Producer-package-consumer. Are you a pop music consumer? They are typically female, c.13-24yrs.

If you were not born in the present century, you are likely not a pop music consumer.

If you prefer AM-FM radio or piped in muzak over mobile phone and ear buds, you are likely not a pop music consumer.

If you feel Shawn Mendes & Camila Cabello (Señorita) look or sound like Lil Nas X* & Billy Ray Cyrus (Old Town Road,) you are likely not a pop music consumer.

The consumer, not the producer, decides what product succeeds in the marketplace. If you believe you can predict or control the emotions of a million+ teenage girls, you are a special kind of delusional.

*Not to be confused with NAS & Nick Cannon, aka: Shuck & Jive (Eat Dat Watermelon.)


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jack Campin
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 03:00 PM

My answer to Steve's Greek bus experience was being on a long bus ride in Croatia. That was the first time I heard Dolly Parton's "Jolene". Which (a) didn't sound stereotypical in any way and (b) had every word crystal-clear, even on a bus's sound system. This is a trend we're talking about, not a universal.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 02:47 PM

"Jim - it's a meat pie duel at dawn then..."
Sorry - I'm an "extremist evangelical vegan" - remember !
Now if you'd suggested sticks of celery you'd have been walking with bow legs for weeks
Jim


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 02:21 PM

Jim - it's a meat pie duel at dawn then...

Now "Ernie" was a proper chart topping pop hit...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 01:54 PM

Forgot to add
Aren't people who worry what others think of their music being a little insecure ?


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 01:38 PM

"Some old folkies are even more intolerant about pop music"
The only intolerance I can see here is from those who describe an effort to analyse and describe a music as 'intolerant'
Do we have to accept everything without thinking or talking about it
I can remember bitter battles with you and others about the importance of traditional song - does that make you "intolerant" ?
Not liking a genre is not 'intolerant' it's personal taste
"Old Folkies" and "extremist evalangical vegans" doesn't strike me as particularly tolerant
Look to thyself before you start casting your stones boyo
On observation, Pops songs are not there to be listened to anyway - those played as muzak, as many are, are talked over and whenever I've been unfortunate enough to be at a live session, shouted over, even by those who are there for the music
I've often wondered what would happen if someone adopted the folk club "shhhhhh, we're trying to listen"
Can't see Metalica fans being too pleased
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 01:32 PM

As my daddy used to say, "It's the same... only diffrn't."

To even discuss the idea, people need to clarify their personal, subjective concepts of what constitutes 'sameness'. After long, bickering debates, they will discover that it's kinda like my daddy said. SOME songs/music is very much the same in SOME aspects, and very different in others.

I personally agree that far too many pop songs have far too many irritating similarities to suit me... most about topic, but also about coherence and repetition... and very often, volume. However, if pressed to listen to a moderate list and classify them, I 'could' find some differences. I might even... now & then... find one that is relatively interesting or vaguely pleasant. But I am simply not familiar enough with most 'pop' to bother sorting thru 100 to find 1 or 2.
    ... and because for the first few years of Mudcat, I used to debate fiercely that 'folk' and 'traditional' were not defined narrowly enough, I dare not even attempt to explain MY subjective categories in pop.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 01:09 PM

Some old folkies are even more intolerant about pop music
than extremist evangelical vegans are about tasty hot meat pies...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 12:59 PM

To suggest that all pop sounds the same is really a very narrow view...and a tone deaf one. Imogen Heap does' nt sound remotely like Natasha Kahn, nor does Natasha Kahn sound at all like Adele...yet they are all talented women and they all bring a great deal of passion and skill to their music. I believe that these artsts
and many like them, would write and perform music regardless of the renumeration.
We could make a list of pop icons and it would be easy to see that they do not all sound the same.
If, by your own admission, you haven't listen to much of it since the fifties, I don't know how you can pass such sweeping judgement on a genre about which you know so little.
   I sometimes get the feeling that what people really don't like about pop is not its' sameness, but its success.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 12:15 PM

Many singers of so called "pop music" sound if something is being poked up their bums when singing - I suppose they need to compete with folk singers who bleat like goats of sheep!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Mrrzy
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 12:10 PM

Everybody's talking 'bout (can't believe nobody said that yet) mmPop Muzik!


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 11:46 AM

Last year I spent an hour and a half on a hot, cramped coach in Greece as we were transferred from airport to hotel. The bus driver played poor-quality recordings of Greek pop songs from his memory stick. The enervating atmosphere, combined with the chatter, the bus noise and the shrillness and thudding of the music (the only elements of it that were discernible) COULD have had me thinking that all Greek pop music was the same (and shite to boot)...

Pop music on the radio is transmitted with extra compression so that loud and quiet bits are smoothed out. Great if you're in your car doing eighty with all that engine and road noise...a feeling of sameyness is thereby injected into the music. If I'm on the motorway, I find I can't listen to Penguin Eggs or Mozart piano sonatas on CD because the wide dynamic range means I either miss the quiet bits or turn the volume up extremely loud...

For a number of years I've been editing pop music tracks on my laptop for a local dance teacher, generally by cutting bits out and splicing and blending bits together. I obviously have to listen very closely to the music in order to do that, often having to play passages over and over again to get it right. I've done several hundred songs like that by now. Many an earworm has been the upshot. Pop music hasn't been "my thing" since the Beatles split up but I'll tell you what: in terms of invention, imaginative arrangement, lyricism and production values, there's some bloody good stuff out there. And there's variety. Of course, being a woman of good taste and exceptional talent, the dance teacher has probably selected mostly "better" pop songs... You can have music, any music, playing in the background, but if you're not engaging with it there's the danger that it will rankle and "sound all the same." Engage with it and you're likely to discover that variety and nuance. There may be many common elements in pop music, but, as Dick Greenhaus said seven years ago, if there weren't it wouldn't be a genre. You still might not like it even if you do try to engage, but at least you opened your mind...

I still haven't bought any Greek pop CDs and am unlikely to indulge. End of random musings....


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Nick
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 11:32 AM

In a somewhat similar vein Has every song been written?

And I like Rick Beato's take on music


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 11:19 AM

The reason is that the marketers control the music on the media. Reduced playlists, conformity to the dollar and the ignorance of the pop musicians to the history of music contribute.

The late Fifties and early Sixties represented a shake up in the industry when the marketers didn't quite know their target audiences which allowed Dylan, PPandM and the KT to go up the charts. Then the rockers created something new and outside the bounds of conformity.

Something similar happened in Country Music with Haggard, Nelson and the Outlaws.

Every once in a while, the public gets to make a choice on what they want to hear other than the tastes of the pocketbook executives. Then, the marketers have to retool.

Think of it as being a metaphor for the way our government is being run today. The majority of people have little choice in their representation.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 11:08 AM

"No it wasn't created like that. Elvis and Roy Orbison had voices that were very different "
Another world, another set of values in my opinion
Back then the words were far more prominent and distinguishable than they later became - the diction was far better
I suppose it's all down to how deeply the subject interests you
I have never been able to take pop songs seriously since the late fifties
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 10:57 AM

btw...

I don't listen to much 21st century music..
But this 'pop' track from 2016, which I first heard last week,
is my most recent favourite..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SjfspM5sDIA


But.. hey.. It does sound the exact same as.. well.. ermmm..
King Houdini and His Calypso Parliament aka Wilmoth Houdini - "Bobby Sox Idol" circa 1947

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aB159Ac7sh0


So that proves it then.. all pop music is the same...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jack Campin
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 10:48 AM

Of course all pop music sounds the same - amm music sounds the asme to the non initiated
The difference with pop music is that, because its created as a commodity it's designed to sound the same


No it wasn't created like that. Elvis and Roy Orbison had voices that were very different - much more different than any two male voices you could find on the British folk scene today. But you don't get that range of voice types today in pop, either. It took decades of evolution for that homogenization to happen.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 09:59 AM

Old dogs probably moan that all cats sound the same...???

Actually, I might agree with dogs on that one...


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 04:13 AM

sorry 'bout the typos but I'm sure someone can make use of them
Jim


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 04:12 AM

Of course all pop music sounds the same - amm music sounds the asme to the non initiated
The difference with pop music is that, because its created as a commodity it's designed to sound the same until the manufacturers decide that sound has reached the end of its shelf life and decide to replace it with a "new sound" that will be put through the same process - ad infinitum
Whatever the composers and musicians want to create or of capable of creating is immaterial - it won't become "pop" (popular) until it sounds as if it will sell to the marketers
There ahre hiccups in this process - The Beatles created their own sound, which was then marketed as part of the 'Mersey Sound' and began to sounds a different 'same'
Folk songs became 'the folk sound' and became indistinguishable frpm therest of the pap
The same happened with jazz and Country and Western
Look what happened to the "new raw sound" of punk (which I always detested) sanitised and marketed as a commodity

The best of all music maintained it's identity and its uniqueness and survived apart from the machine, put the musical 'Big Brothers' always kept their beady eyes on it to see if there was any pelf to be got from it
There - got that off my chest !
Jim Carrolll


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: leeneia
Date: 02 Oct 19 - 12:51 AM

Two weeks ago, I was staying at a hotel owned by a famous chain. I wanted to color in an adult coloring book and had to go to the computer center to find a table. (No desk in our room.) I listened to a lot of corporate pop while coloring, and I can assure you it was homogeneous to the max.

The same kinds of voices, the same limited range. Melodies mostly stepwise. One pattern of percussion throughout each piece, the dull thuds produced by cheap music software. If this music were candy, it would be Milk Duds.

I didn't understand one sentence of the lyrics all evening long.

I don't understand why the hotel goes to such trouble to make high-class visuals (fine woodwork, nice carpets, fancy furniture), then fills the air with cheap, shrill, poor-white loser music.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,keberoxu
Date: 01 Oct 19 - 06:40 PM

Seven years on, and the reason I refreshed this thread,
is this experience:

I had a fairly lengthy drive today, relying on my car radio,
where a whole lot of FM radio stations are programmed
at the touch of the right combination of dashboard buttons.

(No, I don't do Alexa. The heck with Alexa.)

The FM stations where I live and drive, have their parameters.
Some play more of the older stuff than anything else,
and those stations make a living, so they have their audiences.

Within the "pop music" category, and
within what is fairly current now and not from earlier generations,
I have noticed two distinct areas,
covered by two types of stations/programmers.

One is the corporate conglomerate mass media stuff. You know,
the names that EVERYONE has heard of
even if many of us never go out of our way to listen to the music;
the celebrities of the pop music industry.
The names change, the business remains the same.

And the other category?
"Alternative" is the term favored by writers who compare pop musics.
These radio programmers/stations tend to be
around universities and colleges.
Today's "Alternative" could be Beck, could be Sleator-Kinney,
many more names.
Some have got big contracts with big companies;
some work the student-concert circuit really hard and
manage to break even, even though they are not household names.

I spent the drive today
switching back and forth between the two categories of stations.

And ... yes, you can smell it coming ...

it really DOES all sound the same. It did to me, anyhow.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 17 Sep 12 - 07:20 PM

The Computer as Music Critic (NY Times, 16 Sept. 2012)

from the researchers, excerpted...
DID your parents tell you that today's music is getting poorer and too loud? Well, maybe they were right. But we will offer a different hypothesis: what if it is all about economy of resources? If today's music still satisfies listeners the same way pop music did 50 years before, then maybe its creators are simply better at crafting pleasing songs.

If music is a form of information and musicians are using fewer "words" to convey their message, maybe they're getting more efficient.

Far from being in decline, perhaps pop music is on the verge of a golden age. Critics may disagree, and the qualitative debate may never be resolved. But the data, gleaned from massive music collections and computers, objective and detailed as they are, might just say otherwise.

Joan Serrà and Josep Lluís Arcos are researchers at IIIA-CSIC, the Artificial Intelligence Research Institute of the Spanish National Research Council.


~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,Stim
Date: 11 Aug 12 - 01:31 PM

Well, Phil, If you don't believe in the folk music of today, I guess you're not going to be that much fun at a party;-)

Your comment about the pianola makes me laugh--though my inner "music wonk" compels me to point out that that it was far from the first mechanical musical device, the "music box" probably was(it was also probably the first programmable device).

At any rate, my belief is that "folk music" and "folk songs" are that collection of words and melodies that someone in a community knows well enough to start, and have most of the rest in the group join in.

These group of songs is not necessarily very coherent. I suspect that, even in the depths of the past, when our forebearers grunted Proto-Indo-European morphemes in caves there was the odd music hall tune.

Such like the estimable Mr. Child collected specific sorts of things, such as ballads, which created among latter day revivalist an impression that there was time when people liked nothing better that to sit around and drone ballads to one another. However,I think people are people, then as now, and that after a few of the long ones, someone would sing a contemporary song, with a few bawdy verses thrown in, and the older ones would complain and go off to other other room and play cards, leaving the young ones to pair off for dancing to the temporal equivalent of "hip-hop", while someone said something to the effect that that wasn't real music.

It is further my thought that in these times we tend not to sing together much because our present day world doesn't allow the sort of camaraderie that facilitates singing together.


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Subject: RE: pop music DOES all sound the same
From: GUEST,Blandiver
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 06:48 PM

As far as folk music's concerned, mechanical reproduction - starting with pianolas and ending with TV - changed everything, ISTM.

Musical experience is part & parcel of the available technology of any given culture; technology which is only an extension of the way we deal with information anyway. Folk remains a reactionary myth within the technological framework of the culture that creates it, or yearns for it. Without technology there would be no Folk; it only exists at all because it was perceived to exist and taxonomised via recording & reproduction. If the Old Trad Songs had been left in their natural habitat they would have died just as surely as the music of the Druids, the Ancient Egyptian Sun Priests or the Troubadours.

In a very real way the old songs died too; they live on only an as technological echoes; as Ghosts in the Machine (even the Machine Molle). Meanwhile the Idioms & Traditions of a Myriad Human Musics continue apace, undaunted, evolving as never before, if only because Technology gives them the juice to do so. In terms of usage & experience 'the folk music of today' is right there, available to all at the flick of a switch or a touch of a button. It's whatever floats your boat & remains as relevant and as vibrant an aspect of human experience as it has done for 50,000 years. The technology of musical recording is now the technology of musical creation, just as surely as Conlan Nancarrow created his masterpieces on the piano roll.

The important thing is not how music is played or reproduced or recorded. The important thing with music is how is it HEARD, which has always been, and will always be, via THE EAR and straight to THE HEART and THE SOUL. It is because of THE EAR that music exists at all.


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