Kickin’ it Old School?

By Parvathy Nair

exploding note (2)Below, we quote a rather frustrated and flustered individual, noting the state of today’s music industry with much amusement :

Lyrics in the 70s :

Oh let the sun beat down upon my face, stars to fill my dream

I am a traveller of both time and space, to be where I have been.

To sit with elders of the gentle race, this world has seldom seen

They talk of days for which they sit and wait and all will be relieved.

– Led Zeppelin : Kashmir

 

Lyrics today :

Yesterday was Thursday, Thursday

Today i-is Friday, Friday

We-we-we so excited

We so excited

We gonna have a ball today

– Rebecca Black : Friday

 

Additionally,

With each word your tenderness grows,

Tearing my fear apart

And that laugh that wrinkles your nose,

It touches my foolish heart.

– Frank Sinatra : The Way You Look Tonight.

 

And I was like baby, baby, baby oh

Like baby, baby, baby no

Like baby, baby, baby oh

I thought you’d always be mine (Mine)

Baby, baby, baby oh

Like baby, baby, baby no

Like baby, baby, baby ooh

I thought you’d always be mine

Justin Bieber – Baby.

Food for thought – Will the artists of today ever be able to live up to the likes of The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll or the faces that graced Abbey Road?

( If those titles ring no bells, you might want to look up Elvis Presley and The Beatles. )

When the lakes of all topics of discussion have run dry, it comes as no surprise that most decide to talk about their favourite kinds of music and artists. I hear the arguments and debates everywhere, from college campuses, canteens, coffee huts, chai shops to other places that begin with the letter C. The primary argument stays the same – Is the music of yesterday better than the numbers on Billboards?

And our answer is-

… Cue drum roll.

They can’t be compared.

Contrary to what the first few quoted lyrics might imply ( which, might I add , were put there almost only for the sake of amusement) , what most must try to understand is that much like the people and times, music changes too. This concept of dynamism which shows itself in more ways than one today, is the reason that my parents can’t stand Daft Punk and Chris Brown and question my sanity when they hear echoes of Skrillex from my room.

Whether it’s the coming of House music or the transformation of what was noise before into what is Metal today, the youth of today and yesterday must understand that years from now, the definitions of ‘good’ music will change once more to pave way for the new generation, again leaving us with more room for debate with regard to what can be classified as music in the first place.

The use of Auto-Tune was considered close to an insult back in the day. Today, however,  it’s almost on impulse, and so many use it that doesn’t figure as much of a disgrace anymore. It’s more of the new regular, which strengthens the cynic’s argument of the lack of talent in the industry. It is agreed world over that artists like The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, Nirvana, and so many other successful bands got where they did owing to their sheer talent.. It is also agreed that the lyrics in the past had much depth to it- meaningful words written mostly by the artists themselves whilst they played multiple instruments.

The argument submitted above by most pro-past music revolves around the lack of talent in the industry of today. Now, I’m not here to defend the existence of the nefarious Auto-Tune, but I am saying that there were just as many debates in the 80s as well, concerning which artist deserved the hype that they received. So just as the youth of then chose their music carefully then, I believe we should be allowed to do the same without being subject to judging.

Let it be.

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