You may have noticed I’ve been writing less, putting up less content and the site has been threadbare for much of April. I’m bored. Bored with the direction of music, bored with the same old same old in the music industry and bored with the decline of the rock genre. There are a few really good bands out there still, but so much is really dependent upon the use of computers. I am no hater of technology in music, but as I’ve said before I’m really not a fan of the electronic noise being made today. The old cliché, “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it” really applies here. Two guitars, a bass, and a drum kit work fine for me. Hell you can throw in a banjo, a horn section, a piano, even some strings if you want, but the amount of over-sythnesization has really turned me off.
I came up in the 1980’s and 90’s and really loved that era of music. Nirvana, The Smiths, Guns N’ Roses, Pearl Jam, these were bands, now icons, that really made their mark on my musical psyche. They made such a profound impact on me that they defined what I expect out of bands. Radiohead is a band that has changed dramatically as time has progressed from rock band to rock band with an electronic element and yet the familiar sound of Johnny Greenwood’s guitar is never left out. It’s a sound that in certain instances I can tolerate, but frankly the internet has made the art of making music so much easier.
I am inundated daily with emails from publicists dutifully doing their all to get their artists the exposure they’re paid to get them. There are very few of these acts that would be remotely relevant in a pre-internet age. Bands that have to resort to gimmicks to make their presence felt. The internet has created a place where accessibility is just a click away. No longer do you have to seek out great music it will find you or so goes the mantra. In actuality, good music is much harder to find. The music that finds you is mostly the electronic noise by “artists” like Baauer who aren’t artists at all but merely alleged thieves of other people’s music. It has been clearly stated on sites like Spin that Baauer stole samples and now that the song “Harlem Shake” has become such a hit the artists from which he stole from are seeking their just compensation.
Again, I am not decrying technology as evil, because without the internet I wouldn’t be able to write for all to read. That being said I don’t want to contribute to the endless stream of bad music being pushed into the ether any longer. The golden age of music is, if not dead, in a coma. At some point, I assume, it will regress to the mean, but for the time being the electronic fad that seems to permeate much of the musical landscape is very reminiscent of disco. Repetition seems to be the norm and that is infuriating to anyone who has ever picked up a guitar to see someone push a button and create noise out of nothing.
The general idiocy and complacency to allow this to happen by the musical community in general is another component of this. As witnessed by anyone who watched Jimmy Kimmel’s interview of the misinformed, gullible and idiotic youths, a sometimes racially insensitive youth claiming to like bands that didn’t even exist at Coachella and spewing some of the same things I have said about bands here that I truly didn’t enjoy either. Half of my writing on this site has been an outright sham, with the express purpose of allowing access. There are some artists that I truly loved and I’ll allow you to figure who those are and aren’t (the writing quality and lack of clichés speaks for itself). There are also some that I have wittingly acknowledged as favors for publicists the vast majority I have grown to like tremendously. There are very few from agencies that I won’t mention, because who cares, that were extremely rude or awful, but the vast majority have been not only cordial but outright friendly. These are people paid to do a thankless job and they do it with major aplomb. They are to be commended.
So what does all of this frank talk mean? It means i will be writing less and only if I really believe in what I’m writing about. It means I will write about books, food, beer, booze and of course music. I will write about new and old music. I will write about music I see and enjoy. I will write about places I have eaten, music that I have enjoyed, places that I have been, or anything else that suits my fancy. If that means my readership declines preciptiously then so be it. I would rather fewer people read my meaningful writings than the masses read my drivle. I haven’t lost my love for writing, I just have lost my love for writing nonsense. I never intended this to be a blog that I wrote three times a day on, it just sort of expanded and after a while it just became sort of overwhelming and the quality suffered. I want to get back to writing for the love of it not for the overwhelming need to fill up space, but to write what I’m passionate about. I’m not sure what all of that is yet, but rest assured I will still write. Will you still read?