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Topic: What Music Is and Is not  (Read 5667 times)

Offline StoreBrand

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What Music Is and Is not
on: June 03, 2004, 12:12:08 AM
Where is the minds of some of the people on this forum?  I have read through a couple threads concerning different styles of music (particularly the threads "classic and pop" and "Rap IS NOT Music") and I must say (not for lack of a better word) that I seriously can not believe the utter garbage that has been posted in these threads concerning what is and is not music.

Even worse is that this garbage seems to be the majority of the posts (sorry if I have miscounted).  I do not want to go into specifics as it would take me weeks to respond to each ridiculous point I have read through.   I just want to point out that there is no heirarchy when it comes to styles or genres of music.  Just as quick as you can dish out absurd insults or "low talk" of one genre of music, absurd insults (or "low talk") can be thrown back at you.

This is directed to any and ALL who have expressed their degrading views of any genre of music other than classical.

Offline belvoce

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #1 on: June 03, 2004, 12:22:01 AM
I guess that's your opinion.

JK

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #2 on: June 03, 2004, 01:05:34 AM
I think I understand what you are saying and would be interested to know what sort of music you like and listen to? I know that a lot of people who like classical music, myself very much included, will want to suggest that nearly all other types of music are "lower down" in the heirachy. Let me explain why I would consider this to be true. For me classical music is something that touches emotions that no other types of music come near to, for me to compare classical music to rap is firstly impossible and secondly insulting! Please consider that calssical composers, and jazz musicians for the most part, didn't compose for entertainment or for commercial gain, they composed as an expression of their emotions. Therefore their music is the purest and doesn't have any other motives attached to it such as money, it is purely an expression of feeling. A lot of modern day music is produced in order so that it sells records and makes money, I would find it very hard to believe that the latest Britney Spears song for example was firstly written by her and secondly is an expression of her real emotions when she sings it.

Another point that I would make is that the level of skill that it takes to be a classical or jazz musician is far far beyond that of any pop artist today or at any time. Having said all of this I do not dispute that there are some great songs that have been written, Paul Simon for example has written some absolutely beautiful songs, and of course there are skills that pop artists need that classical musicians haven't got. But consider this, most classical musicians could become either pop singers or pop musicians, a lot of performing pop music is to do with stage image/presence. But how many pop singers could make it as an opera singer and how many keyboardists could become pianists? I know this is a rather crude comparison to make but it does demonstrate the point I'm trying to make.

For people who listen to and love classical music, myself included, it is impossible to explain to people why we feel this way and I guess we are lucky. Of course it is difficult to compare any different types of music and I suppose that in the end it is a matter of personal taste, if you don't like classical then you don't like classical. All genres of music require different things in order to make them work, the reason why people feel that classical is at the top is because it requires a whole new level of understanding, emotion and skill in order to play and compose it succesfully.  

Offline monk

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #3 on: June 03, 2004, 01:26:23 AM
Storebrand, of course here are some narrow-minded, elitist people.

But just as a meal in an italian gourmet restaurant is OBJECTIVELY better food than greasy, too salty french fries from a takeaway, music by composers as Bach, Beethoven, Brahms is OBJECTIVELY better music than certain kinds of pop, rap, techno etc. If you deny that, you have really no clue, sorry.

But yes, it's O.K. to just want some french fries from time to time! But not always!

Best Wishes,
Monk

Offline donjuan

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #4 on: June 03, 2004, 04:23:58 AM
StoreBrand, why dont you look around you and notice the kind of people who like Rap, hip hop, and punk.  I have been insulted adn spat on by these people, and I dont have any intention of getting to understand them better.  However, I have yet to discover a true jackass involved with classical music.  I support all stereotypes associated with certain styles of music, simply because I havent met anyone yet who would change my perceptions..
donjuan

Offline squinchy

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #5 on: June 03, 2004, 04:37:02 AM
Many people believe that pop stars cannot possibly become a pianist/classical musician, and I agree. Most of what they do involves looking "pretty" and singing some songs with the aid of a studioful of equipment. They've let their skills and smidge of innate intellegence atrophy-their producer makes it come together, their nutritionist adds up their calories, their fashion consultant picks out their clothes, their PR person smoothes over scandal, etc.

But aren't the songs they put together still basically music? Aren't they made of the same pitches that come out of a piano or lute or trumpet? Yes, the tone color/technical details are different, but they're still the same tones. Same for the chords and progressions and things.

It's like comparing crepes and my mom's version of crepe-like breakfast pancakes. When I was half my age, I'd think that they were the best thing in the world and anything else is mocking/shaming the world of flat-eggy-cakey-goodness. I thought crepes were disgusting when someone brought them in for S+T. Looking back on it, I feel silly. Both are made of flour, moisture, and egg, and are cooked in a pan (or some griddle thing). The thickness and other flavourings just make them variations on a theme.

[--loses own train of thought--]

But you got some sort of message from all that, right?

It's interesting to remark that someone "mashed" (superimposed) Joplin's Maple Leaf Rag with Eminem's "Without Me," and they fit together PERFECTLY.
Support bacteria. They're the only type of culture some people have.

Offline liszmaninopin

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #6 on: June 03, 2004, 04:44:55 AM
I would like to open by stating that everyone is entitled to their own opinions of music.

There certainly are some people with a snobbish attitude towards non-classical music, viewing such forms as below them.  However, the majority of classical pianists I know (personally) are inclined to at least respect the opinions of others, musically speaking.  What people say on this forum doesn't necessarily represent what they'd say to your face, and thusly they may speak rather strongly against music forms they don't like.

That said, there is a difference in inherent quality, taking "classical" music and "popular" music as a whole.  I know that these are both tremendously broad groupings, but bear with me.  We still listen to many classical compositions that are easily 350 years old.  There are still people who dedicate their lives to understanding the depths of some of the greatest masterworks.  People have been searching these depths for hundreds of years.  I'm not going to go into lists, but I could probably name dozens of classical works that this would apply to.  Do you think, seriously, that in 300 years people will dedicate their lives to analyzing the lyrics, harmonies, melodies, rythms, deeper meanings and symbolisms, etc. of even the best selling popular songs?  There are certainly some that are beautiful, but are they revolutionary, do they break new ground?  Imagine if you will the thousands upon thousands of mediocre classical works that have been "weeded out" by the years from the standard repertoires of modern pianists.  Only the best is left.  The same process has not had time to work it's affect on popular music yet, but if in 300 years, there are as many current pop songs in common circulation as there are classical pieces; I'll believe that pop music is of equal quality (not that I'll be around to argue the point then ;)

Spatula

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #7 on: June 03, 2004, 06:36:12 AM
Lemme get back on this:

I'm reading a book now called Classical Music 101 and I'll get back to you guys ASAP.  thx and happy stuff  ;D

Offline Saturn

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #8 on: June 03, 2004, 03:52:36 PM
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I think I understand what you are saying and would be interested to know what sort of music you like and listen to? I know that a lot of people who like classical music, myself very much included, will want to suggest that nearly all other types of music are "lower down" in the heirachy.


Even though classical music is my favorite type of music, I don't consider all other types of music to be "lower".  Music is, like many things, ultimately dependent on taste.  If you had grown up only listening to hip-hop, never having heard classical music before (unlikely but bear with me here), and then one day you heard a performance of Rach 2, it's pretty likely that you would think it was strange music and not like it.  Why?  Because you hadn't cultivated the taste for it.

If you do believe classical music to be higher than other types of music, it is a judgment based on opinion, not fact.  You simply can't make a logical, objective argument to support it.  For example, let's try to create a well-reasoned argument to support idea that classical music is superlative:

Premise 1. Classical music is more complex than other music.
Premise 2. The quality of music is determined by its complexity.
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Conclusion.  Classical music is better than other music.

Putting the argument into this form shows how silly it is!  P1 is suspect.  There is a lot of simple classical music, and complex "other" music.  P2 is plainly incorrect.  If it were correct, all music from the classical period would be inferior to Bach's works, which isn't necessaily the case.

Just about any argument you could make for the superiority of classical music faces similar problems to the one I've given here.  Of course, you could compare specific examples of music.  It wouldn't be untrue to say that almost all rock music is crap to the music of Beethoven.  But, this is more due to the great genius of Beethoven than to the inferiority of the rock genre!

It is important to remember that music which is popular today is relatively new.  Classical, on the other hand, has gone through hundreds of years of refinement.  Most of the composers who were considered great in their day are now known to be relatively mediocre (like Telemann as compared to J. S. Bach).  When today's music has gone through such refinement, you'll see great works emerge.  By then, such music will likely be seen as historical specimens the way that classical is seen today.

Even if you do believe all other types of music are lower, it does no good to state it as if it were fact.  It just makes you look close-minded and elitist.

By the way, JK, all of this isn't to you specifically, I was just using your reply as a starting point.

- Saturn

JK

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #9 on: June 03, 2004, 05:22:33 PM
I get what you're saying and as I have said it is really impossible to compare different genres of music, simply because they are different! But what I would say about classical music in relation to say rock or pop is that classical music, broadly speaking was not written for the sake of entertainment or for commercial gain but for expression of the composers' true emotions, rock and pop on the other hand generally speaking are. This of course doesn't neccessarilly elavate classical music above them, a lot of what people think about classical music being a higher art-form or not is dependant on what people consider music to be about. If for one person music is about fun, entertainment and dancing then they are more likly to listen and like modern music, if on the other hand you feel that music is something a bit more deep and about expression of emotion then you are likely to go with classical. It is because of this that classical music is considered "serious" music.

Hope I've explained this at least a little bit well!! :)

Offline StoreBrand

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #10 on: June 05, 2004, 03:07:50 AM
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But just as a meal in an italian gourmet restaurant is OBJECTIVELY better food than greasy, too salty french fries from a takeaway, music by composers as Bach, Beethoven, Brahms is OBJECTIVELY better music than certain kinds of pop, rap, techno etc. If you deny that, you have really no clue, sorry.


monk, you are comparing an Italian gourmet meal (which can be anything) to a very specific single serving of grease-fried french fries that had too much salt put on them.  You are also comparing what is likely a high-class luxurious restaurant setting to an unnamed location described only as "takeaway".  

You did not think that I would notice this, did you? (!)  [only kidding]

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But yes, it's O.K. to just want some french fries from time to time! But not always!


Ok, but there is something that is not so okay about this to.  What you have said of french fries can be said for just about any food in the world that has been fried in grease (including gourmet food).

A modern composer such as James Horner understands classical music better than most of the people, if not, every one here on this forum. Let a pianist from this forum tell James Horner that his popular song from Titanic - My Heart Will Go On is the equivalent of McDonald's junk food.  Personally, I would laugh at the pianist but imagine for just a second what Horner's ego-driven response would be to such an insult.

A "pop" or "rap" producer is just as devoted to creating original music in his or her respective style of music as a pianist is devoted to playing someone else's music (in whatever style/period).

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Please consider that classical composers, and jazz musicians for the most part, didn't compose for entertainment or for commercial gain, they composed as an expression of their emotions.


It may (...and barely just may) be okay for one to consider this if you name the composers and can show that each one did not, in fact, compose for commercial gain.  Also, is this something that the composer told you?  Or is this something that you have assumed?  Mozart was all over the place even at a very young age in a desperate pursuit of "commercial gain", was he not?

And I certainly would like to know what composer managed to compose more than five notes for a purpose other than entertainment.  For the record, IS THERE ANY COMPOSER HERE on this forum willing to contend that they do not compose music for entertainment?  If so, what do you compose music for?  And how does your reason for composing not fit into the definition of entertainment?  Please do not bother to answer this question if you are not a composer.

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For me classical music is something that touches emotions that no other types of music come near to,


This is an interesting point that you have made here, JK.  Just for the sake of an example, let me say that I feel the same way about dance music.  Dance music can touch emotions in you in ways that classical music does not.  This is why I do not favor labeling the different styles of music in some twisted opinionated form of hierarchy.  Both styles of music are capable of putting you into an altered state of mind.  The state of mind I have reached listening to and dancing to dance music can probably be described as a mix of between euphoria, adrenaline, and dreaming!  

Nevertheless, you wouldn't believe the amount of garbage that spewed out of my mouth about dance music before I got into it.  

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I would find it very hard to believe that the latest Britney Spears song for example was firstly written by her


It is okay for you to say this (even if you are wrong) but ask yourself this:  How many piano performers on this forum have written the songs that they perform?  Less than 1% maybe?  Can't you see that these sort of insults easily travel both ways?

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the reason why people feel that classical is at the top is because it requires a whole new level of understanding, emotion and skill in order to play and compose it succesfully.


On the issue of composing.  I would say that over 95% of the people who feel that classical music is at the top do not possess the skills required to compose any genre of music "successfully".  But this obviously depends on your definition of the word "success".

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StoreBrand, why dont you look around you and notice the kind of people who like Rap, hip hop, and punk.  I have been insulted adn spat on by these people, and I dont have any intention of getting to understand them better.  However, I have yet to discover a true jackass involved with classical music.  I support all stereotypes associated with certain styles of music, simply because I havent met anyone yet who would change my perceptions..
donjuan


I'm sorry to say this donjuan but, for some odd reason, I find this post funny.  You being spit on is not what I find funny.  It's how you have linked this incident to different genres of music.  : )

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Another point that I would make is that the level of skill that it takes to be a classical or jazz musician is far far beyond that of any pop artist today or at any time.


The people who write pop songs are just as skilled as the people on this forum.  The difference is that they may not have taken to time to build a large piano repertoire.  But this difference is only potential.  Besides, how many people want to spend a large percentage of their natural life building piano repertoire?  How many people won't mind sitting alone in an environment equivalent to jail practicing for months all day and night a piece that is traditionally played at funerals?  ....only to play this piece in a setting that just about amounts to an executioner's chamber?  Other reasons for not having a large piano repertoire could be:

1.  They don't have the time to.
2.  They don't care to.
3.  You couldn't pay them to.
4.  They just won't like it because they don't like the style.
5.  They don't play the piano.
6.  They are not interested in the piano.
7.  They can use their voice better than the piano.
8.  Their energy is going into other aspects of music.
9.  It is not required of them.
10.  (Insert all other possible reasons here)

The bottom line is that you are not hearing anything in Rachmaninoff's Concerto that the most successful song writer's can not. So drop the pseudo-ego in your attacks on the works of these artists.  In other words, if you have a knack for bashing Elvis Presley, take two seconds to realize that you are not half of what he is musically speaking (etc.).

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If you do believe classical music to be higher than other types of music, it is a judgment based on opinion, not fact.  You simply can't make a logical, objective argument to support it.  For example, let's try to create a well-reasoned argument to support idea that classical music is superlative:

Premise 1. Classical music is more complex than other music.
Premise 2. The quality of music is determined by its complexity.
--------------
Conclusion.  Classical music is better than other music.

Putting the argument into this form shows how silly it is!  P1 is suspect.  There is a lot of simple classical music, and complex "other" music.  P2 is plainly incorrect.  If it were correct, all music from the classical period would be inferior to Bach's works, which isn't necessaily the case.


Good form, Saturn!! This is very well said.

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It wouldn't be untrue to say that almost all rock music is crap to the music of Beethoven.  But, this is more due...


You could get away with saying this but I personally feel that there is much more to music than just the music itself.  One example that will probably make sense to you (if you believe it) is that music is, in some ways, designed to attract a mate.  A peacock uses his feathers to attract a mate and a bird uses song.  I believe this to be the same in humans.  One purpose of music is to attract a mate.  

Using this logic, who attracts more heterosexual mates?  A rock star or Mozart?  Without protection, many rock artists today would have thousands of little ones scattered across the globe.  Mozart, well just look at his grave.  Where is it?  Certainly this wouldn't have happened to a rock star because his female companions would have come to his rescue long before the morgue had a chance to throw his body into a pauper's grave (joking).  This is the power of music.  

And to say that this does not matter would be a step away from reality.  You mind as well walk around with a magic wand and take away every thing that a woman finds beautiful marking that looks do not matter. It is ONLY the inside that counts in the end, right?  This is not reality.  Going back to the peacock example, are the rock star's feathers really that much more crap compared to the plumage of the narcissistic classical composer?  I would say that the rock star, with his green spotted feathers, is fairing exceptionally well in this example since hundreds of peahens are lining up to him.  I believe this to be one of the purposes of music as it is ingrained in the human psyche.  

Then there is the issue of lyrics, a powerful melody etc.  If used right, the overall potential power of an inspirational song with a powerful melody is enormous.  If you look at it this way, you might see that rock music isn't so much crap in comparison after all.  You could then go a step further...

If you view music as a way to just relieve stress, to let loose and socialize, as a resource to think about what you are doing, as a way to synchronize a social setting, or to "simply" relax, etc.  If you view music in this light then rock music has Beethoven's music beat by a long shot.  A very long shot.

Just my two cents.


Offline willcowskitz

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #11 on: June 05, 2004, 04:46:52 AM
Eh... Why do people argue about things like this?

You either understand art, or you don't. A piece can trigger thoughts and emotions in you, but only if you have even a little in common with the composer.

Pop music, nowadays, is very simple. This is a FACT. The melodies consist of simple, short up'n'downs that get repeated over and over again for a duration of couple minutes at tops. We live the times of capitalism, which basically means that money has more and more second hand influence on everything the world reflects, and this also includes music. Pop music is composed for the average person with average musicality, average attention span, etc...  Of course the result must be the closest possible compromise of these feats to hit The Average. Of course, the world consists of average persons (the ones that vote for idiotic directives, politicians, whatever whenever) who drive the world through the determined course of history that different people depending on when they lived call past or future. Returning to the subject, this guidable mass is the ultimate target to sell products to when the money sets the standards. There's more to "pop" than just music - its EVERYWHERE! The big companies, who hold great power called money, can reprogram the minds of the average, this is called "lifestyle" which is it's more harmless sounding name. The subtly affecting, consciously created details in different commercials are influencing our subconscious everytime we turn on that shitbox we call TV, and if we go walk out in the streets we see flashy signs or just massive walls covered in different advertisement material from mega industries like Coca Cola or McDonald's (or *cough* Micro$oft). These sights are already so common that nobody questions their necessity and as we create superficial "tolerance" to them we only open a free current between the reprogramming material and our minds. This is how pop culture gets formed, by the companies that sell images of Your Self to yourself. This is also why I neglect pop music.

Then there's music that's created by artistic inspiration. The difference between artistic music and the produced music is that the former wasn't MADE, it forced itself into existence through the composer's mind. This kind of music is found in numerous different styles of music, and is not dependant on the instruments that it is played on - since this seems to be the case that in some people's heads separates classical music from "other music"; classical is played on the "classic" instruments, known throughout the history of music itself, varied and altered in the process between the day first cavemen started to beat rocks together and today, rocks evolving to drum sets, organ to cembalo to piano, etc... (I'm no expert on history of musical instruments, I'm only giving examples. Also, "evolution" could be the wrong word here.)

The art music is self-potent, it has life of it's own, it is a micro or macro-universe, depending on how you want to view the strength and dimensions of music in relation to the seemingly complex life of a human. Classical music is often mentioned to be complex and obviously this in some people's opinions raises it higher from the less complex, and in some sense it is true. But there's more to creativity of man than the levels laid out on each other, take mathematics or music out of which mathematics is a prescriptive language and music in my opinion is descriptive. The difference is, mathematics sets the limits (prescribes) to "what can be", and music ventures into (describes) the structure of "what can be". Since they're both about the structure of existence, they can flawlessly correlate to and reflect each other, hence the clichy quote "Music is maths."  Also that's what the complexity is about - the levels of existence. In mathematics we have algorithms and fractals, in music we have... Well I'm no expert on music so I'll just say, for example Bach or Dupré and their fugues.

Complexity of certain music requires a cultivated/sophisticated (from his 'ear') listener, but other than that I don't see complexity as a self-potent value. Take two strategic board games, Chess and Go. Chess requires good memory, visualizing skills and calculating thinking. Go requires deeper wisdom of the "physics" of the game's rules and creative thinking. According to a friend of mine; Go reflects life, he finds analogies from different game situations/positions to his life and the more he plays the more it inspires him. Chess, on the other hand, is very mechanical, whereas in Go the creative mind possesses the mastery to the game, packed with the wisdom that the player gathers from numerous different games (no two games are ever similar) he plays. Reminds me of an autist who can calculate big numbers in his head but isn't very capable of to others simple logical procedures, compared to a "normal" person who doesn't possess this ability to do quick calculations but can have deep understanding of abstract laws of calculus and then build the road to the same conclusion. Difference is, that the latter has more insight of the process. I'm no expert on this either so I'm only speculating, but the analogy here should be clear.

What I'm saying ("finally...") is that the beauty of music or the amazing capability to have understanding and get enjoyment from it is by far more valuable than any certain "genre" of by which people crudely categorise the different characteristics of vibrations of air molecules. What makes (modern) pop music different from other music is that the emptiness in it is spotted and become aware of very quick if one has the musical intelligence (chess-like) to see the cheap tricks that are repetitiously used to cover the shallowness of musical content. Art music (including (majority of) classical) contains deeper and tastier truths about the structure of all and is therefore slower to see into and digest. And the influence of it always adds something to one who (even partially) understood it.

Offline ted

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #12 on: June 05, 2004, 10:09:16 AM
Storebrand:

I compose and improvise a lot of piano music and most definitely do not do it for either entertainment or profit. I don't really know why I do it. It's just something I have always felt a need to do for forty years, and the act of doing it is sufficient. I do not publish my music, make recordings or play in public.

I do not move in any musical circles and know hardly any musicians. In fact, I do not consider myself a musician. What other people think of my music neither interests nor concerns me. If people express an interest in it then I give them whatever they want of it, if not that's all right too.

So there is at least one counter-example.
"Mistakes are the portals of discovery." - James Joyce

Offline StoreBrand

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #13 on: June 07, 2004, 06:11:59 AM
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I don't really know why I do it.


Hi, Ted.  You may not know but I do : )   Let's just say that you do it for entertainment!  There's no reason to think otherwise.

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I do not move in any musical circles and know hardly any musicians. In fact, I do not consider myself a musician.


Of course you are a musician!!!  If you're not a performing pianist or a music major this does not mean that you are not a musician.  Don't let the pseudo egos of some of these people intimidate you--they are nothing special (most of them, anyway).  People are bashing other genres of music here because they think that they are something special.  Unfortunately, they may never figure out that they're not.  

In another thread on this forum, someone even went as far as to attack the IQ of people who listen to different genres of music.  I don't care if this guy is a concert virtuoso but if you think that you are not a musician when compared to such a stupid person please think again.  For crying out loud, this very same person stated in the thread that he nearly committed suicide over his observations of other people's actions.

And I have the feeling that this guy is not just a case of ignorance in isolation.  There seems to be a whole movement of people here on this forum with somewhat similar views.  I find it sickening.

Offline willcowskitz

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #14 on: June 07, 2004, 07:55:07 AM
StoreBrand:

Aren't you being a bit unnecessarily aggressive?
I have gotten this image that you have somehow been degraded by classical music listeners/musicians and you want to hit them back by trying to transform your cornered view into The Truth.

If music is a matter of taste, why are you so eager to "prove" that your dance music is just as good as snobby elitists' wannabe-sophisticated classical. Aren't you doing exactly what you blame these people of - make statements that override any other views to satisfy and back up your own beliefs. If you really feel dance music gives you a "high", why are you angry at the people who don't have this ability of feeling strong emotions from that particular style of music?  So what if they judge it?  Did anybody read my post about "what music is and is not", as I thought it was fit well within the frames of this topic?  Or does my articulation just suck?

Conversation like this gets nowhere, people (still) have right to have opinions about things, and even if there are some closeminded people that piss you off, do you have to adopt their game rules and fight back with the same attitude?  By saying to yourself "Ok they don't understand"  you're not an elitist, but mere human who knows his place in the world.   As I stated, one either understands art or he doesn't.

Something really hit my eye in your text:  You keep saying music is only entertainment.  According to what I understand by the word "entertainment", this is FALSE.  Need for entertainment occurs when man is passive, when you need to kill time or look for amusement (which is basically same as eating candy or jogging for endorfin).  People satisfy their senses by many possible ways, that's just the other side of our physicality besides the opposite which is pain.  People take their lives day by day, that's the optimal state-of-mind for carrying through their lives without too much burden on their minds - entertainment is what helps people in doing this, they want to feel "good" being here and forget about the darker truths of life (for example, that you're going to die).  Entertainment keeps the man passive, be it TV or listening to music, but grants him the illusion of changes taking place.  One example of this is how people go to socialize in clubs just to get some background noise to their lives - same applies for "the Bold and the Beautiful" or exponentially rising popularity of reality TV shows.  It gives people an ´´alternative´´ life, something that feeds itself no matter how passive you are.  If you listen to what average persons rather talk about, you find that the communication has deprived:  It only exists to strengthen the structure of the modern commune we call society.  Take cellphones (I love this one) ... When cellphones became common, people ´´realized´´ they couldn't cope without them.  Why, all of sudden, were people so dependant no them?  Latest achievements of technology are implemented to advantage of market economy as soon as possible, and while the economy also supports the scientific/technological progress, people MUST be made dependant on the latest gadgets on market.  Another good thing about consuming is that the motion remains, the "development" of war over natural resources, and attempt to advance in area of science - towards a goal that nobody probably even knows the direction of.  When people are made dependant on technological devices - and as the technology becomes more and more complex and takes distance from an average person - being surrounded by something he doesn't understand, it succesfully detaches him from the nature and puts him under total control by whatever authorities are on the top of the pyramid that keeps the big machine running.  

What this blahblah has got to do with entertainment and music, I'm getting there.

Most people "walk the paving".  They walk the globe that floats in infinite (just a describing word here) space but they only see the ground, if their eyes meet the horizon they instinctively halt - that area is irrelevant to their daily routines and boring lives in the mechanical society.  When you grow up you come to think that you're satisfied by your understanding of the world, it comes down to being "just life".  This illusion is created by the pressure of the social web, it sets an individual in it's place because the web cannot afford much flexibility in order to maintain the strict structure of society that I talked about earlier.  The web makes sure the individual gets enough repetition of what is important in "life", yet the web only limits life when viewed from the perspective of an individual;  It takes life to new scales, individual human isn't life anymore, but a group of humans forms a life ´´form´´ (literally, form of life) that has the one priority of keeping oneself alive.  If it has a finger, be it a creative mind in a group of people, that doesn't serve the whole, it can be amputated for the good of the greater formation of life.  Now...

Entertainment is... a shot of endorfin from that cellphone button.

Entertainment is... making your painful stay here in the universe more pleasant.

Entertainment is... temporarily forgetting that your life span has a limit to it.


In Ted's case, for example, I get the impression that there's a driving force in him that finally gives his compositions sunlight.  It is not "entertainment", it is will to understand what we are, and music is a very fascinating way of getting to know yourself, whether you play other people's music that matches parts of your inner, unexplored self, or compose your own music, which gives even deeper and more detailed hints of What You Are.  This is seeing beyond what most people would call "life".  It is an open and humble endless curiosity towards What This All Is.  This ability every child possesses, and majority of adults have forgotten.  Composing music is just one way to explore.

What music, or art in general is, that I already tried to put in words.  So if you want to make this post more complete, you check on my previous reply.  If I didn't make something clear enough, I can try articulate it in other words.  The whole fight between musical genres becomes ridiculous if you can see music like I happen to.

Offline StoreBrand

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #15 on: June 10, 2004, 10:03:38 PM
Quote
Aren't you being a bit unnecessarily aggressive?
I have gotten this image that you have somehow been degraded by classical music listeners/musicians and you want to hit them back by trying to transform your cornered view into The Truth.


Will, sorry for taking so long to reply.  Now that I think about it, I probaby was being a bit aggressive.  You're right about it being pointless to debate these sort of things.

Quote
If music is a matter of taste, why are you so eager to "prove" that your dance music is just as good as snobby elitists' wannabe-sophisticated classical.


Will, you've said "my" dance music as if this genre is my music.  But I am far from the biggest fan of dance music and I have not set out to prove something for it.  I thought dance music was a good example of my point because there are loosely no lyrics in it (in addition to other reasons).

In every genre exists music that you would probably have to pay me to listen to.

Quote
So what if they judge it?  Did anybody read my post about "what music is and is not", as I thought it was fit well within the frames of this topic?  Or does my articulation just suck?


I read your post but I wasn't sure how to respond to it. You don't seem to be aware that I agree with most of what you are saying!


Quote
Something really hit my eye in your text:  You keep saying music is only entertainment.  According to what I understand by the word "entertainment", this is FALSE.  Need for entertainment occurs when man is passive, when you need to kill time or look for amusement...

...and music is a very fascinating way of getting to know yourself, whether you play other people's music that matches parts of your inner, unexplored self, or compose your own music, which gives even deeper and more detailed hints of What You Are.


Your take on music seems to fit with what I believe to be entertainment.  Any differences appear to be in the wording only.  I guess this further drives your point that these sort of debates are pointless!

Jonathan

Offline Tash

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #16 on: June 11, 2004, 03:25:02 AM
i personally prefer classical merely because i find it more interesting to listen to and i find that a lot of my friends listen to pop/rap/blah music because you can 'dance' to it- i was told recently by a guy that he found classical music boring because he couldn't dance to it, and i'm like well that's not the point of it is it.

i respect the fact that pop musicians are making a form of music, and i decided that i can't pay them out unless i found out what their actual intentions were in making music, eg. if it's purely to make money and be famous then they can go to hell, but if it's more genuine then that's ok and i respect the fact that they're making music because they love it- how can i be against someone who loves making music even if it's just pop- if it didn't exist then my singer friends wouldn't have anything to sing- except jazz but a couple of them aren't really jazz singers, and none of them are opera singers of classically trained, so i'd rather not deprive them of singing because they love it and they're damn good at it.

the one thing i find annoying is the fact that the composer of pop etc. songs don't get as recognised as classical composers. like in a concert you'll want to know what's being played and who composed it, compared to going to say, a britney speares concert, where all you want to know is the title of the song so you can go and download it later. even if what they've composed is relatively the same as what the rest of the composers composing in the same genre they should still be acknowledged more than just in the tiny writing in the cd booklet.

basically i prefer classical because it's all different. i find the works more original and contain different and interesting things from composer to composer, whereas pop consists of it's ostinato drum beat, bass, melody with chorus that repeats itself and some most of the time corny lyrics- yes they are corny and i hate lyrics unless they're in a different language and can therefore not understand what they're saying.
'J'aime presque autant les images que la musique' Debussy

Offline willcowskitz

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #17 on: June 11, 2004, 03:50:38 AM
Quote

Will, you've said "my" dance music as if this genre is my music.  But I am far from the biggest fan of dance music and I have not set out to prove something for it.  I thought dance music was a good example of my point because there are loosely no lyrics in it (in addition to other reasons).


Yes, "your", I shoulda added those quotation marks.


Quote

I read your post but I wasn't sure how to respond to it. You don't seem to be aware that I agree with most of what you are saying!


From your posts I concluded you would agree to some degree, but on the other hand your at-the-moment aggressive rhetorics gave a contradicting message.  ;)


Quote

Your take on music seems to fit with what I believe to be entertainment.  Any differences appear to be in the wording only.  I guess this further drives your point that these sort of debates are pointless!


This I still have to argue.  >:(
What I see music as, is far beyond entertaining oneself, though it can, and mostly is, used for entertainment more or less.  Music itself, though, isn't even from the realm of people, it is a greater level in the universe than what we comprehend, hence the most complex music is still to be found.  

Music transcends ("is far beyond") life, but touches it (affects, influences, at it's flattest form "entertains").

Just, words have to be handled with care.  ::)

Offline Terry-Piano

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #18 on: June 21, 2004, 07:10:50 AM
I think my point is relevant here.... about 3-4 years ago... considering that pop and rap and so on ... are so much more present in your everyday life..(TV, RAdio , etc....) it is only normal that you only know this kind of music... even if you think you heard "CLASSICAL"...whatever that means,....its only called classical because it is old.. which is a good idea ..that if somehitng doesnt get forgotten in time... then it surelty has something to it...(POP/RAP/DANCE/ROCK STARS CHANGE EVERY WEEK)
BAck to my experience... i used to be a guitar player....i played rock music... first Nirvana, then led zeppelin and jimi hendrix... and i thought i was discovering good music..... when i heard moonlight sonata by beethoven ..my whole life turned around... i became obsessed with music....When you hear that 'classical music '( I HATE CALLING IT THAT WAY... its just plain old GOOD MUSIC)...is something to be learned and studied...its not just random bullshit... it is the truth...
If only you could understand.///// but i know you can"t
...that is called ignorance... lack of knowledge....your just to caught up in what everybody listens to and why... its not something 'WE' choose unlike you.... WE ARE BECKONED BY IT./.. but of course... im writing something that you coul;d not possibly understand... Thats why the classical musicians sound cocky... and conversations like this are bound to last forever and ever... but we'll see who has the last laugh./. who will be speaked more highly of in 2000 years.... 50-CENT , BRITNEY SPEARS, METALLICA OR BEETHOVEN and other people  who can be called great composers... not just mere faces on a product


though living in ignorance can be a blessing... id give my soul to be reborn as a stupid dog

And why the hell are you on a piano forum ?? Go out in DA CLUBS or something...piano is boring ( LOL :P )

Offline ahmedito

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #19 on: June 26, 2004, 11:29:35 PM
If John Cage taught us something, it is that EVERYTHING is music, there is no difference, silence, sound and noise can all be music. Music is an objective thing that depends completely on the listener...

That said, I agree with Monk about some kinds of music being objectively better than some others. Even so, you must all remember that for every Liszt, Beethoven and Brahms you also have a gazillion Herzes, Reis, Thalbergs, Stiebelts and others in the XIX century (and those are only the ones we know about). The error I believe is in thinking that just because its "classical" music, its better than Techno or rap, or New age or whatever. There is good music in all genres (in some more than others) and we could do well to remember that Stiebelt would probably be the equivalent of Britney Spears... because some of these pianists were inmensly popular in an age when the greatest composers were also active.

Judge the music with an open mind.
Dont judge the genre or the people who listen to it but the sound and the effect it has on you.

I wish English were my native languaje, because Id be able to give much more coherent responses.
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Offline willcowskitz

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #20 on: June 28, 2004, 07:37:57 AM
Yes Ahmedito we were pretty much through at that.  Then Terry-Piano stumbled upon the thread, scanned the first post, skipped over the others and blurted his important "additions" out.

Offline pianiststrongbad

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #21 on: June 28, 2004, 11:29:28 AM
This seems like an interesting thread.  Storebrand, I believe that comparing classical music with modern pop in terms of musical genious is like comparing the mona lisa with a childs drawing to put it the simplest, it just doesn't compare.  The idea of Britney Spears being on the same musical level as Bach is just repugnant.  You can argue that some of her songs are catchy, but seriously why are they catchy?  Is it the lyrics or because she ends up with less cloathing on than she did at the beginning of the show.  I am going to guess the latter.  In my opinion the majority of the public does not want to listen to an hour long symphony but would enjoy listening to a 2 minute pop song with lyrics that they understand and Simple chord changes that are followable.  Good luck finding any modulations. I believe that classical music like all art is a powerful way to express oneself, for instance look at the works of Shostakovich.  A pretty influential guy, suppose to write happy music but instead writes very depressing music due to the state of Russia at the time.  I feel that if one is as moved by a Britney Spears song as much as one is by Beethoven's 9th then one has no understanding of what the power of classical is.  

One of the reasons I value classical music so much is no  body knows exactly how it goes.  For instance who is more correct on the interpretation of the third sonata by Chopin- Rubinstein or Kapell?  Who knows.  Chopin once wrote that he never played the same piece twice the same way.  So how do we know who is more correct.    

Anyway, I do appreciate pop and other music for what it is- a method for entertainment but nothing more.  

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #22 on: June 29, 2004, 05:41:14 PM
This topic is just almost as touchy as gay marriage...yikes I'm running for cover

Offline Peachy_Keen

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #23 on: June 29, 2004, 07:26:37 PM
If you're looking for something tangible to seperate classical music and pop, how about image? Let's assume that Britney Spears is three hundred pounds overweight, and has to be pushed onto the stage by a bulldozer. Her voice is the same, but who is going to go to her concert? The songs written for Britney Spears are tailored for her, as well as her outfits, makeup, and the computers enhance her voice. When you buy a CD, you're not only paying for the songs, you're paying for the image.

Arguably you could say the same thing about opera singers, but the classical presentation is independently designed to express the original vision (or interpretation) of the composer. It's having appearance define the music, rather than having the music define the appearance.
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Spatula

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #24 on: June 29, 2004, 09:34:25 PM
When Britney Spears (hereonafter refered to as BS for short) is dead, who on after will perform her music professionally?  

When Beethoven was dead....who'd thought they interpret his works soon after?
I can't really see some teenage girl in 2098 AD try to "intrepret" BS's music and sing "baby hit me 1 more time?"  
Then again we've never had an original recording by beethoven himself...and billions of BS's CDs.
By now, you'd kinda think I don't like BS, and ummm that's true.  (note... I'm not sexist, it just seems that way)

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #25 on: June 29, 2004, 09:35:09 PM
Quote
This topic is just almost as touchy as gay marriage...yikes I'm running for cover


Not running for cover anymore  8)

Offline puppetmaster

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #26 on: July 01, 2004, 05:47:10 AM
A lot of the people on this board are indeed ridiculous. Music cannot be judged by it's complexity. There is of course a lot of pop and rap out there that isn't nearly as emotional, but that does not go true for all.

I love classical music and play the piano myself. But I am also a huge fan of heavy metal. And trust me that if you find the right band you will see the music can be just as emotional as any classical. I have many times suprised close minded people by playing a band that sounds liek classical, and then when the same band turns up the distortion they proceed in calling it crap. Yet when they see me play the Revolutionary they are impressed. (this is true for rap as well, there is a lot of rap out there that I love and is very emoptional and musical).

The point is, that no one should go out and call a genre of music "less" or not as emotional because chances are they are simply not used to it or have never heard anythign good. Just like the average Joe kid only knows Chopstick's and assumes playign the piano can be stupid. Stereotypes can be swung around everywhere.
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Offline puppetmaster

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #27 on: July 01, 2004, 05:53:29 AM
And for everyone here comparing classical to Brittany Spears, I beliee it's quite obvious that it is ridiculous to compare her music to somethign as Bach. Her musical level is like at a toddler level. But not all modern music is that low. There is a lot of modern stuff that is very complicated and musical. But as many people have probably never heard any of it, you can't say anything.

Many times also, people are very talented, but choose to do the much simpler poppier music instead.
In Mist She Was Standing

Offline Peachy_Keen

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #28 on: July 01, 2004, 06:12:05 PM
Since you included me in your stereotypes, would you care to address my last post directly?

I think that very few people here would actually argue that classical is better than (insert genre here) "hands down". There are obviously some real gems among all genres of music. By taking "snobbishness" as an insult and tossing your favorite band names right back at him, you're not representing your genre fairly either.
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Offline ahmedito

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #29 on: July 01, 2004, 08:05:34 PM
I am studying to be a concert pianist, but I also play punk rock and salsa.... I love all music.

Somewhere above someone mentioned that Britney Spears' music is tailored specially for her, but the same can be said for a lot of classical and romantic music, which would be the pop equivalent 200 years ago.
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Offline Peachy_Keen

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #30 on: July 01, 2004, 08:08:54 PM
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Somewhere above someone mentioned that Britney Spears' music is tailored specially for her, but the same can be said for a lot of classical and romantic music, which would be the pop equivalent 200 years ago.

For her vocal capabilities, or her image?
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Offline ahmedito

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #31 on: July 02, 2004, 01:57:17 AM
apparently you havent heard of stiebelt or other XIX century pop stars



look them up.... it will be fun and definately give you more insight on the pop culture 100 years ago
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Offline Daniel_piano

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #32 on: July 02, 2004, 03:00:08 AM
I find it completely ridicoulous when someone tell me that the best music is the more complicated/complex
The reasons why it is absurd are two

1) When one look too much for complexity and
super-innavation one will surealy end up deluded one day because nature and life are simple and the beauty of life is rooted in the simple scheme of nature, natural laws and time line
There is no a continue future when everything is new just a circle line where everything is repeated but anytime is seen with a different line
To eliminate these things from one's life only because they already existed or are rooted on a late complex nature means the end of life eventually for someone not able to life semplicity and simple things

2) By judging a music quality for it's complexity or yet worse by trying to compose only complex music is like denying one true desire, true wishes is like chosing not to being yourself
Music is something that is born in your mind, in your life experience , in your dreams and fears so you shouldn't look for a style or for a musical complexity but just let the music flow within you come out
When it comes out it can be anything
It can be a nasty dissonant noise, a love melody, a easy children song or a complex fugue
The point is that by denying the composers the right of creating simple music is like denying the true essence of music that is like the true essence of love: you can't choose your music you can only let come out what is within you
That's also the reason why ihmo criticizing music and music critics are absurd
Criticizing (deciding objectively if something is good, bad, right, wrong, worth listening or not) is impossible when you have to do with emotions
You can't say if an emotion is good or bad, firstly because it's too subjective and on the second place because no emotion is wrong or bad .. they're not chosen they lived but they were already within us
Music is not something obejctive never
Tecnique is, musical theory is ... but it's useless to criticize music according to his theory, tecnique, theorical construct when its really purpose is emotional, ephimeral and personal
A composer need to express what is within him/her be it one day semplicity, one day complexity, one day anger, one day love, one day nonsense ...

Musica becomes dishonest when it is created not according to one's emotions but according to theory, tecnique, desire of being considered a virtuoso, elites idelogies, political reasons, complexity

Many pop music is dishonest (created just for a capitalistic society or zombies) but then again we're not the ones who should know/tell/decide this

As long as music is an honest emotion that someone let come out from one's soul/mind it has the right to be considered music, to liked or disliked but without any false attempt to consider this disliking rational or objective

Many honest music is simple because the emotion it means was simple, because the composer was trying to describe his love for simple things in life, and this beautiful and something that need our genuine respect

I laugh (but also feel pity for this person) when someone tell me that Islamey is better than Children's Scenes because it is more complicated, more complex, more virtuosic
The point is that Children's Scenes doesn't need to be complicated on the first place because it generated from a simple emotion, simple but beautiful

Does that mean that imho someone shouldn't like Islamey more than Children's Scenes
No, but someone should tell me "I like Islamey the more because it touches certain moods and emotions within me that I consider more important for my life path than Children's Corner

Irrationality, spontaneity .. this is what music can be judged with .. but any attempt to be objective in judging a piece utilizing concept like complexity, virtuosity, difficulty are just dishonest and a ridicolous failure

I think someone here hit the nail on the head when he/she said that:
[/i]"calling the man stupid who invented the candle just because Edison invented light bulb."[/i]

The point is that one creates what is "in context" in that moment
It doesn't mean it is complex, scolarly perfect, banal whatever .. it just meets its purpose may it experience a feeling, make people dance or make the light

When one creates something useless, out of context that has not root on ones emotions, feelings or actual need just because one want to impress, want to do something complex, difficoult and instead of needing to espress ones emotion one needs to feed ones ego he/she is being dishonest to himself/herself, to music and to life

Bottom line, complexity and semplicity are not like good or bad they're just two different way of seeing the world and they can change during ones life
A simple music is a simple emotion, the simple description of something worderfully simple like a tree

I love Vangelis music
I doesn't care if he is not a virtuoso, if his music is not complicate, complex, full of runny 16th notes, grandious scales and arpeggios
The only thing I care is that his music sonds genuine and honest to me, he just is espressing his feelings whi his music and I happen to love this feeling complex or banal is doesn't matter

Daniel








"Sometimes I lie awake at night and ask "Why me?" Then a voice answers "Nothing personal, your name just happened to come up.""

Offline willcowskitz

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #33 on: July 02, 2004, 03:36:38 AM
Well said Daniel.
Side effect: Nobody will  a) read  or  b) understand it.

Offline pianiststrongbad

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #34 on: July 02, 2004, 06:22:32 AM
or c) care

Offline Peachy_Keen

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #35 on: July 02, 2004, 04:35:29 PM
I agree with a lot of the points Daniel made, but I have to admit sorting through it all made me feel like quitting the English language.

To summarize what Daniel said in a more debatable format:
-Music comes from inside of us, it is an expression of ourselves.
-By measuring music by its complexity, you're "missing the point", that is, not seeing its musicality.
-Making music not for the sake of making music is dishonest.
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Offline Daniel_piano

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #36 on: July 02, 2004, 05:30:05 PM
Quote
I agree with a lot of the points Daniel made, but I have to admit sorting through it all made me feel like quitting the English language.

To summarize what Daniel said in a more debatable format:
-Music comes from inside of us, it is an expression of ourselves.
-By measuring music by its complexity, you're "missing the point", that is, not seeing its musicality.
-Making music not for the sake of making music is dishonest.



Yep, sorry for my english
I just want to add a thing to one of this point

Quote
By measuring music by its complexity, you're "missing the point", that is, not seeing its musicality


Not only this, but by measuring music by its complexity you're not allowing simple music, hence simple feelings to exist and be espressed

Daniel


"Sometimes I lie awake at night and ask "Why me?" Then a voice answers "Nothing personal, your name just happened to come up.""

Spatula

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #37 on: July 02, 2004, 09:19:15 PM
Quote
Since you included me in your stereotypes, would you care to address my last post directly?

I think that very few people here would actually argue that classical is better than (insert genre here) "hands down". There are obviously some real gems among all genres of music. By taking "snobbishness" as an insult and tossing your favorite band names right back at him, you're not representing your genre fairly either.


Boo-Yeah

Offline Daniel_piano

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #38 on: July 02, 2004, 11:28:30 PM
But why use Britney Spears as an example
Why comparing genuine music with just a sex symbol created for zombie teenagers that is nothing but a money maker
It's not that fair to compare the best examples of a whole category with the worst example of another whole category

Popular music is not only Britney Spears
What's the problem with Celine Dion ?
I like many of her songs
They're not complex, they doesn't require a virtuoso to be played or sung, they are not made of a lot of modulations and are based on simple harmony
So what ?
She sings for her genuine desire to translate her emotions in music and she is doing that with the amount of skill she posses
As long as she is honest in espressing her feelings though music and as long as many people feel linked and like these feelings there's no reason to say that her songs are not music and are less music than baroque, romantic or impressionistic music (please don't call it "classical music" classical music means absolutely nothing and neither Beethoven or Debussy are composers of the classical era)
There are other pieces out there that are tecnically more complex ?
So what ?
How a piece is complex has nothing to do on what a song/piece means, what feelings/sensations it conveys, how many people in the world feel connected with this piece and need it for get along in their life

Here in Italy we have a painter whose pictures are like drawings made by a 2 years old child
They're stylized because that the way the painter sees the world
So it's completely absurd to believe that you can choose your style, you can only create according to the style that is already within you
His paintings are not considered less good than the paintings of a super-skilled landscapes painter
The point is that with the skill he posses he is doing something that as as a purpose for many people
People like his works because they sense his honesty and that is better than a dishonest painter that instead of doing what he likes create something just out of mannerism or for the desire of make an impression on critics and people

Novelty has nothing to do with finding at all cost new musical laws, new musical constructs
Novelty is utilizing all the tools we have aquired so far (harmony, politonality and so on) to translate in music our deep feelings and emotions
And new musical tool are not to be searched at all cost, they will just needed when we will need to resolve musical problems that don't allow us to completely create what we want to
Music novelty is not a theorist job
Painters we will always draw cats, yet their paintings will always be innovative because no human being has the same sensitivity, imagination, creativity, life outlook and the way they see their subjects is what make their works always different and new

Nature is finite, no one can really believe innovation is looking for something completely new because one day there will be nothing to discover anymore
Yet, we still can have innovation in our life because each human being is different and unique and we can see a new world thought this person eyes and imagination
That's what innovation is for, not distruction of any past model
The medium, the style, the skill one uses don't care, only the content
Not only in music but also in movies making, books writing, sculpture, poetry ...

Daniel

"Sometimes I lie awake at night and ask "Why me?" Then a voice answers "Nothing personal, your name just happened to come up.""

Offline Saturn

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #39 on: July 03, 2004, 01:59:59 AM
General Consensus of this thread:
All music is music except for Britney Spears.

Spatula

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #40 on: July 03, 2004, 04:43:22 PM
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General Consensus of this thread:
All music is music except for Britney Spears.


How about Eminem?  I be a rapp'n yo  :-X

f0bul0us

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #41 on: July 03, 2004, 07:07:07 PM
To be honest I only read the first paragraph of the author's post because I knew right where this was heading. The only thing stopping me from dropping a huge philosophical belief is that threads like these are meaningless, no one changes their opinions on the questions and the entire thread is used to defend or attack two basic questions (yes or no). In the end what do you accomplish? Nothing.

For threads like these, there should be a "questions and theories" board...

Offline willcowskitz

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #42 on: July 04, 2004, 03:54:27 AM
Quote
For threads like these, there should be a "questions and theories" board...


"Student's corner" doesn't sound right for this topic but "Miscellanous" or "Anything but piano" would do just perfectly. There are lots of matters that could just be skipped over only because there knowingly exists so many 'schools' of different views, this doesn't mean we have to stop searching for The Objective Truth or rather get as close to it as possible. There are things we can't argue, like what's everyone's favourite colour, but this isn't one of them. If you had actually read the thread in it's whole and bought yourself the right to add something to it, you would see that there are actual pertinent arguments against both views.

f0bul0us

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #43 on: July 04, 2004, 04:41:21 AM
Quote


"Student's corner" doesn't sound right for this topic but "Miscellanous" or "Anything but piano" would do just perfectly. There are lots of matters that could just be skipped over only because there knowingly exists so many 'schools' of different views, this doesn't mean we have to stop searching for The Objective Truth or rather get as close to it as possible. There are things we can't argue, like what's everyone's favourite colour, but this isn't one of them. If you had actually read the thread in it's whole and bought yourself the right to add something to it, you would see that there are actual pertinent arguments against both views.


Lol, I can always count on you for constructive criticism ;D

Offline StoreBrand

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #44 on: July 05, 2004, 10:16:14 PM
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Thats why the classical musicians sound cocky... and conversations like this are bound to last forever and ever... but we'll see who has the last laugh./. who will be speaked more highly of in 2000 years....etc.


I wasn't going to post anymore in this thread but I'll make another post for the sake of argument.  One aspect of music that I believe truly matters is how many people the music touches and in what way.  It really does not matter if any given bit of music won't be around 2000 years from now (...if you're crazy enough to believe that you actually know this) because you certainly won't.  So if you are making music that truly touches the hearts of millions of people right now in the present day then you are doing grand work, or an insanely beautiful thing.  This is plain and simple.  

Bernhard will not be around a century from now to post on this forum because he will not be alive.  But that does not make what Bernhard is doing right now any less beautiful in any way, shape, or form.  He is inspiring and helping people every day by doing what he is doing.

Most of the people here insulting other entire genres of music and calling them crap couldn't spell their own music if they were given a magic marker and all of the alphabets.  More along the lines of craftsmen instrumentalists (not artists) partially living in the past, they have resorted to outright insulting music of today.  This is a problem.  

---------


A pianist's mere interpretation of Scarlatti or Bach is very far from the category of original work.  I believe this is a cold fact--not just my opinion. These people are performing other composer's piano music and, in the sometimes drab life-long process, have developed a perverse mental fantasy of having moved up a ladder in comparison to wildly successful musicians of today--this is a complete joke.  

In another thread, a pianist came on to this forum and made his very first post politely asking about La Campanella.  Only to have a few troubled members waste no time to give a pregnancy-driven negative and emotional response as if they conceived the music, have gone through labor pains, and are giving birth to the pieces themselves.  This is very ridiculous.  Being cocky is one thing but sounding ridiculous is another.  A snob in the world of music is almost laughable--so these people should get serious with theirselves and become acquainted with Earth.

I would rather hear a bird chirping than to listen to some "classical" piano music because I find the bird's music that much more beautiful and this has nothing to do with the genius of the bird or the composer. If 95% percent of men find a girl beautiful then what does it matter if someone crawls out of the dark shadows to find fault in her nose and legs?  The bottom line is that the girl is beautiful and this is all that matters (for the sake of example).  Beautiful women grow on trees but, even then, it will never ever get old despite all of them having the characteristic super model physique.

In my eyes, any half decent musician (unless they are hurting and suffering mentally) should have enough sense not to refer to another musician's music as "crap".  This is incredibly insulting.  I can understand non-musicians speaking in this manner but not decent musicians.  So it just doesn't make sense to me when people who are lame and as stiff as a stair board (and who'd probably pull a muscle slow dancing) voice a negative opinion of music that you almost have to move to get into.  And I would find it incredibly amusing to see one of these people crawl out of the closet and tell face-to-face to a highly successful musician that his music is crap.

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General Consensus of this thread:  
All music is music except for Britney Spears.


Certainly, her dance alone is musical enough!  Britney is a professional dancer, a very good one at that.  I believe that one of the purposes of music is to attract a mate and, with this in mind, Britney's sex appeal is through the roof (I am relating this more so to her overall musical presentation not her looks).   Her singing.... well, at least she is singing and it is definitely good enough to get by (50 times better than many of the people who are bashing her!) : )  As for her playing an instrument (snobs please be seated before you read this), the claim is that she is proficient on the piano and learning to play the guitar.

As for her music, well anyone here that thinks that they can do better -- should.  Then come back to this forum to tell about it when you don't make the radio ...for whatever reason.  In contrast to what most in this thread seem to believe, Britney is no easy target in my opinion.  The musicality in 10 minutes of her dance alone may be more than what many of her bashers have in their entire repertoire.  And her sexual inappropriateness aside, I'm not even going to bother to go into how many women are understandibly jealous of her.

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What's the problem with Celine Dion ?


Hey Daniel, excellent posts!  The best answer that you are going to get to this question, if at all one, is that Celine Dion's music is crap.

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I love Vangelis music


The same will be said of Vangelis as well...

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I love classical music and play the piano myself. But I am also a huge fan of heavy metal.


...including heavy metal.

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I am studying to be a concert pianist, but I also play punk rock and salsa.... I love all music.


...and even punk rock and salsa, Ahmedito.  It's very ridiculous.

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This I still have to argue.  
What I see music as, is far beyond entertaining oneself, though it can, and mostly is, used for entertainment more or less.  Music itself, though, isn't even from the realm of people, it is a greater level in the universe than what we comprehend, hence the most complex music is still to be found.


Sarcasm aside...  Willcowskitz, I believe that "classical" music, just like all other music, is missing some pieces of the musical puzzle.  For example... If you can not dance to the music then, inherently, the music itself is missing a piece to the jigsaw puzzle.  In the case of most classical music, it is a puzzle piece that was never meant to be there. So I believe that, in a sense, any given bit of classical music is missing pieces to the musical puzzle.  Keep in mind that this is only "a" example.

The same can go for people...  If a person lacks the ability or is uninterested in dancing, singing, lyrics, percussion, or even rap, etc. etc. then they are missing enormous pieces musically.  If a person lacks creativity then I would say that they are also missing probably the largest, deciding piece of the puzzle as well.  This is clearly reflected in their judgement and views.  But no one person, piece of music, genre, group of people, nation, or even continent can cover the entire spectrum of what music is and maybe only God can decide what music is not.  

Having said all of this, I see nothing wrong with classifying music as strictly entertainment.  Viewing it as anything else is wholly unnecessary and psychologically dangerous in my opinion.

JK

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #45 on: July 05, 2004, 11:22:04 PM
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So if you are making music that truly touches the hearts of millions of people right now in the present day then you are doing grand work, or an insanely beautiful thing.  This is plain and simple.


Or you have found a spectularly clever way to make a s**t load of money out of people who buy an "image"! ;)

Offline willcowskitz

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #46 on: July 06, 2004, 08:58:13 PM
Quote
Sarcasm aside...  Willcowskitz, I believe that "classical" music, just like all other music, is missing some pieces of the musical puzzle.  For example... If you can not dance to the music then, inherently, the music itself is missing a piece to the jigsaw puzzle.  In the case of most classical music, it is a puzzle piece that was never meant to be there. So I believe that, in a sense, any given bit of classical music is missing pieces to the musical puzzle.  Keep in mind that this is only "a" example.



You do have some point in bringing in dancing. But, dancing is a form of communication, or rather, articulation from the dancer's behalf. As Beethoven said music to be articulation of thoughts/emotions, I would say that dancing and music are related here. However, they're not dependant on each other; Dancing is possible without music, and music doesn't require a 'dancable' structure. Music alters our mood, and our mind invokes our body to articulate the feelings to ourselves or others through expressive movement.  Your mind can connect them and engage in flawless communication between the two expressive activities, here receiving microlevel movement and transmitting "macro"level movement, like people associate different separate things with each other though their connection does not necessarily make sense to another person.



Quote
The same can go for people...  If a person lacks the ability or is uninterested in dancing, singing, lyrics, percussion, or even rap, etc. etc. then they are missing enormous pieces musically.  If a person lacks creativity then I would say that they are also missing probably the largest, deciding piece of the puzzle as well.  This is clearly reflected in their judgement and views.  But no one person, piece of music, genre, group of people, nation, or even continent can cover the entire spectrum of what music is and maybe only God can decide what music is not.



Yes they're lacking something, but not necessarily musically (refer to my reply above). I pretty much agree with your last sentences.



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Having said all of this, I see nothing wrong with classifying music as strictly entertainment.  Viewing it as anything else is wholly unnecessary and psychologically dangerous in my opinion.


According to dictionary.com, entertainment is:

1. The act of entertaining.
2. The art or field of entertaining.
3. Something that amuses, pleases, or diverts, especially a performance or show.
4. The pleasure afforded by being entertained; amusement: The comedian performed for our entertainment.  

Looking at 3 and 4, I totally exclude music itself from concepts of purely entertainmental value. Music for me allows me to map my feelings and relate them to my surroundings, this is not amusement, nor divercion nor does it necessarily please me in sense of boosting my mood. There is music that makes you feel happy and there is music that makes you feel sad, then there's music that just makes you sense something through the vibrating air molecules, this is not necessarily even tied to strong emotions but it just widens perspective, this music I listen to for the sake of growth - everything is growing, it is in the nature, some sort of growth occurs everywhere and though I don't know the purpose of it as I haven't yet discovered the meaning of life, I am no exception; I want to grow, I want to know more about the world and I want to know both life and death, their relationship and my relationship with them. I want to grow to see where I'm growing, I want to climb that mountain to see from above the village I live in. I don't grow for amusement, I don't grow to please myself or others, it is total opposite of divert. Life is the biggest mystery, yet closest to us, and it surpasses everything on my list of curiosities. Music is NOT entertainment. Enterainment is something that mankind creates for it's own amusement, to please themselves, and as I said before; To allow them to temporarily forget the limits that their life span has.  For me music is often about encountering this final milestone - it involves speaking to the devil and the death, as much as it involves speaking to Gaia, or the God, or however you personally view it. Things I find are not always pleasing - but - Years ago I was up against the first real heavy existentialistic crises/depressive phase of my life, I was experiencing so much mental agony that it literally made me writhe with pain. Even then, as I was cursing the God and about everyone to deepest hell for putting this weight on me, I swore to myself I wouldn't stop looking for answers no matter how much suffering it would cost me. Entertainment?

Offline Peachy_Keen

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #47 on: July 06, 2004, 09:30:21 PM
Store, I'd like to clarify a few things in your post so if you don't mind i'll just play the role of devil's advocate.

You say that "music that truly touches the hearts of millions of people" ... is an "insanely beautiful thing". What do you mean by that? If the singer/dancer is economically motivated, is the message still true? Or is it true regardless of why it was created, if it rings in the hearts of the masses?

Correct me if i'm wrong, but i'm going to assume your answer to that last question is yes. You go on to say that the minority's opinion doesn't matter in the face of the majority. You seem to have dressed up your example  of the beautiful woman by calling the minority "someone who crawls out of the dark shadows", but isn't "majority rules" an oppressive mentality?

You also use Britney Spears' financial and sexual success as a measure of her success. However, you're not including her makeup artists, choreographers, songwriters, agents, sound technicians, everything that goes up towards making the presentation that is Britney Spears. She owes her success to all of them as well as herself, and if you include them, its no longer one person, it's an entire crowd. Of course there is stage crew, special effects, etc, but they don't deal with the entertainers so I didn't include them.

In context, comparing a pianist to that juggernaut is silly. A competent pianist can sit down and learn a piece of music by himself, however long it takes. When he sees a team of thirty people working to produce Britney Spears' latest single, it'd be understandable to see a look of disdain on his face.

Why does a musician have to be hurting or suffering mentally to have a low opinion of someone else's music? Just because someone isn't understanding doesn't mean they have mental problems.

I agree with a lot of what you're saying, but I'd appreciate it if you'd come out and say it.
Member of the Bernhard fan club.

Spatula

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #48 on: July 06, 2004, 10:30:51 PM
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Store, I'd like to clarify a few things in your post so if you don't mind i'll just play the role of devil's advocate.


I think Storebrand quit this board a month ago.   :P

Offline ahmedito

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Re: What Music Is and Is not
Reply #49 on: July 07, 2004, 12:37:55 AM
For those of you saying that music has ANY other value apart from entertainment.... please refer to my post in the anything but piano section: Does music make you a better person?
For a good laugh, check out my posts in the audition room, and tell me exactly how terrible they are :)
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