Today’s music: Gnarly or nonsense, much of it short on skill, message

Photo by Esther Perkins

Opinion By Chris Major

Chris Major - Photo by Mike Haynes

There are few things in life that I treasure as much as music.

Everything from the precise beauty of classical to the power or rock and hip-hop brings me joy each and every day.

Nothing evokes emotion and influences the masses quite like music.

Whether it is as old as Gregorian chants or some of the songs we hear today, music always has been one the main forms expression for mankind.

It seems, however, that along with all of the wonderfulness of music, a little trash tails along with it.

Every few months, a one-hit wonder comes out with a song that, despite sounding like a worthless track not worthy of attention, becomes a nationwide sensation.

At what point does it stop being artistic? I do enjoy some of the senselessness in music; it’s part of that beauty.

Songs with less gravity are fun and stress-relieving, but a lot of them are ridiculous and over-glorified. Justin Bieber comes out of left field with his “music,” and adult women are falling at his feet.

Then we have the Ke$ha and the Soulja Boy, people who honestly have no business making CDs for a living but somehow keep making money. Is that really what music is?

Maybe I’m alone in this argument, but I have an idea of what music should be. Yes, by definition, anyone can be considered a musician despite a lack of talent, but to me, it takes so much more.

It takes a certain amount of skill at your craft and at least a little bit of a message. It doesn’t have to be serious; just let me know why I’m listening.

I find myself listening less and less to the radio because very few songs have any substance at all to them – just another three minutes worth of revenue.

I want to hear Bach and Chopin, a little Hendrix and Marley. Give me Sinatra and the Roots, operas and musicals, too, if you have any.

That’s what music sounds like, because whether it’s a violin or a guitar performing the solo, it will reach out and touch someone with each and every note.

Consider what music really it is to you. It doesn’t have to be a particular genre or a select few artists – just what hits you as memorable.

A year from now, few will care about Rebecca Black talking about Fridays, but real music, the works of people and groups like Brahms, Santana, the Beatles and Michael Jackson, will stay in our history books, in our memories and in our hearts.

Real music leaves an imprint on us and often changes parts of our culture.


Published: Wednesday, November 03, 2011

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