I had a conversation with a close friend of mine the other day (5/30/2015) about the intent of art and what makes a music “product” for consumption and who consumes it. This was what he wrote on the subject and I thought it was appropriate to share with you.
It seems that it’s not as much of even the music that I play but the conviction of it, and how much I and the band believe what we’re doing. Sure you need the other sides – marketing, playing the right rooms. Yes the product needs to be there, but you can sell a lot, and it could go many different ways and be equally successful.
When the Intent of Art Changes
In regards to the current recording methods and process of modern popular music, I feel that we have lost honesty and integrity in the art, among many other truths. What happens when the intent of art changes? When that initial spark of inspiration is fanned by a wad of cash? When you have time and time again to pick apart a MOMENT, it doesn’t work. When you try to make something perfect through unnatural means, it doesn’t work. Those things don’t work in life or nature and they don’t work in music and art.
In the earlier days of recording you had to get tune down in all one take, without many edits and fixes. In this manner, you capture the fluidity of a sentiment, the whole story so to say, and if it’s a real talent, the story will be interesting. That story could change from one take to the next, it could change drastically in the course of a day, but whatever it was it would be captured fully and honestly.
“I went to the live show and they sounded terrible”. Why is this statement so prevalent? There are some real-deal, straight to the heart talents out there and they, of course, set the bar. When everyone else without as much to give want to sound great and sell records like the talents do, they are forced to find a way other than the natural one. Those people now have the means to do it, with pro tools, auto-tune, and beat detective. Even many of those who are so gifted use these crutches because it has become such a standard. Though in my eyes much more is lost than gained. More is lost in the actual process and what it meant to record to tape. The great care that went into finding the right song and players, Rehearsing the arrangement (and not in different parts of the country), and then that special moment that no one can explain when all take in one breath together and begin to play, in the same room…together. As we move further away from this direction the natural progression is for us to be less appreciative of those more naturally musical and artistic people, as a society. The singers and storytellers. The people who pass it all on.
All this said, I still believe that people can feel when it is truly from the heart and when someone knocks their Fucking socks off with a breathtaking, emoting voice or brings tears by way of a haunting melody. But if there is less and less of real art being pursued, displayed, and represented in the public forums, will it continue to disappear further? Or at least lose the grit and salvation of humanity realized, because the world has changed? Will it continue the purpose of art and represent exactly what has happened to society, and it’s me who doesn’t like my surroundings? As humans I don’t think we’ve changed much in the last bit of our development, our needs are close to the same, maybe more worries, maybe not. But if we keep buying what they’re selling, soon we’ll have tainted the fertile soil of creation, and that which does grow will never be the same. But everyday many artists are born, and they are already hardwired to challenge all that exists and will exist in their time, for that is a cornerstone of art itself
-Mixers only look at screens now
-People recorded so they could have more and wouldn’t have to go to a club or to that city or town to see a specific person
-it doesn’t sound like that when you perform live so why would you want to give the people a misrepresentation of who you are
Here is the score I have been mesmerized by recently. Alan Hovhaness Symphony No. 2