Re: The good times are over
You raise some good points.
Been over this ground many times.
Tired of it now. It is what it is.
Like you say, the good times are indeed over. Now we are without hope.
Not so long ago, ironically enough, the systems in place meant that anyone had a shot at the big time, if they were good enough. Now, there is no hope for anyone, no matter their level of talent. David Bowie would not only not exist today, if he did, he certainly wouldn't get anywhere.
Let that sink in for a minute. Because what I just wrote is the absolute antithesis of how people see the 'game' today. It's game over indeed, and all you can do is stop, get out of the game and withdraw your labour. This is what I have done.
I have actually worked my whole life for a few decades, day in day out, to get to the level of expertise I am at now. I would class myself as a top 10 world class producer and songwriter. Bands like Radiohead make a living, but I find their music and songwriting a bit embarrassing. Of course this is a very subjective field, but there has to be some objectivity too. (Hi Bryce [Radiohead manager] - still love ya baby, say hello to your boys for me)
The problem is that people have really learned to like shit these days. I'm not talking about Radiohead here, they aren't to my taste, but you couldn't say they were 'shit'. I like some of their stuff. It's just that I'm better than them. This is not about quality though. And doing high end exceptional stuff is a major drawback, because people (kids) can not appreciate it. They just don't have the equipment to listen.
Music is not about what it was in the decades past. Today it is solely about advertising/marketing/lifestyle. The people that appreciated music for music's sake are getting old and dying. There is no one to take their place.
Now. I know the 'get off my lawn' argument - you're a bitter and twisted failed musician who hasn't kept up with the times granddad. Au contraire. I can outplay, outwrite and outproduce pretty much 90 percent of the shit of the last decade or two. Stuff done by kids anyway. It's really not that good. And that is an embarrassment to them, because they should be better than me. They are younger, sharper, more in the flow, so why the fuck is their music so pathetically bad and why are they still trying to be Jimmy Hendrix?
Music is dying. It's already dead.
And please spare me the 'oh if you know where to look there is some great stuff out there'. No. No there isn't. I haven't heard anything new and good in over two years now. And believe me, I do look for it. But I have exceptionally high standards, admittedly. Still, I can tell stuff that is above average quality. Amazingly, the vast majority is below average quality. If that is scientifically possible. :-)
The kids have run out of steam. They have no new ideas. They have contempt for those that laid the groundwork before them, but they still try to imitate them.
The problem is there is no scene that has not been 'Red Bulled' out of existence. Microchipped as you walk into the festival. Cameras in your face as you are there, gurning on your gram of speed and half an ecstasy. Hi mum!
Yes, technology is now in the hands of everyone. But there is a problem. Even the grammy award winning producers are churning out shit records. Sure, they sound fucking great. But the same problem as the kids: They have forgotten how to write songs. They have forgotten how to choose interesting people with something to say to write those songs. And so the old are as burned out as the young.
I really don't care anymore.
I still make my music, even though I have retired a failure. I had some chart success and other successes and I can name drop and 'KLANG' with the best of them. But so what? The greatest irony is that even though I am burned out and beyond hope, I can still make music that sparkles and shines and touches places that no one else seems able to. I'm crying out for quality music. I have given up on that as well. I love all music from jazz to drum and bass to hip hop to country to rock to reggae. I can even write and produce in those styles. But can I find someone that is bringing things forward a bit? Doing their own thing? Bringing something new to the table? Nope.
Music deserves to die this death. I sincerely hope it gets a lot worse. I would like to see every single distribution mechanism go down. Won't happen. But I would like it.
In the mean time, you all seem to soldiering on in the vein hope that this thing will somehow come good now. It won't. Fucking Jay-Z and Peyonce and the Guardian have made sure of that.
It really is game over.
Meanwhile, I'm still digging out gems of songs I wrote 20 years ago, and bringing them up to date in whatever modern productions suit them best. Doing hip hop versions of my country stuff. Working on new forms of music I invented that haven't been labeled yet. Doing mind blowing, jaw-droppingly stunning productions that make the listener think they have just been covered in honey instead of sound waves, such is the gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh. Like a bird of rarest-spun heaven metal or like silvery wine flowing in a spaceship, gravity all nonsense now.
Shame no one will ever hear it, really.
You just didn't love your music enough! (To paraphrase)