Why music today does not suck. 2019
When I talk to some of my peers I often hear the same old tune about "music just doesn't sound like it used to" and "this krap today sucks!" or "when are people gonna start making music like they did in the (insert era~90's/80's/70's etc)?" Blah Blah Blah! Lol! Now hear me out and lets dig into this.
Why do we like the certain "good music" eras that we miss? There are a lot of moving parts to this whole argument/debate and I'd like to just highlight a few in this article so that we as "debaters" or casual conversationalists can come with a deeper view when we talk about this.
Good music grabs our souls and puts some of us in a state of euphoria. Music can change our whole day. It can pump us up to finally tell some punk that if he messes with you one more time, you're going to bust his lip. It can help some people deal with a relationship break up. It can give some the courage to ask that pretty girl at the mall out on a date. It can be transformative and in truth many people's lives have been undoubtedly saved by music and the lyrics and feelings that we get when we listen.
A good friend of mines used to always tell me about how he loved the original Playstation. He also loved Tupac, Biggie and a number of rappers and singers from that era. That time was also a wonderful time in his life when he had his first child and him and his wife were madly in love. I remember one day he called me super excited that he got promoted at his job. That time in the mid to late 90's was just awesome for him. Fast forward to the 2008 elections and all he could say was that Bill Clinton was the best president there ever was (you may be able to see where I'm going with this). Of course this logic doesn't apply to every situation, but I've known a few people in my life who took a certain awesome time in their life and because of the greatness of that time, nearly everything was "good". How accurate is this judgement of "good" ?
Another situation we deal with especially today is the quality of lyrics and music. I one hundred percent agree that music today is as raunchy as it gets. But the issue in my opinion is actually the quality of the raunchiness. It definitely has dropped. If your lyrics today are "I wanna F, I wanna F", someone who knows the lyrics to some risque, sexual songs by artists like George Clinton or George Michael will tell you that the artist today just don't have tact in their nastiness. I agree with this. But in my opinion music has not stopped evolving and although it is not what it used to be, I believe it is still "good".
Let's for the sake of argument take both of the above points of view and combine them. Let's take a person who obviously sees that lyricists have by and large dropped in skill in a number of music genres today and that same person has sweet memories that they have connected to certain songs from their great past. Let's take a 17 year old girl, and when she had her first kiss, Christina Aguilera's first album was playing in her CD player. She had just gotten her first paycheck that week and all of her friends thought her boyfriend was hot. This girl feels like she is on top of the world! YEAAAHHH!! lol! I know someone similar to this person and when you talk to her, there is NO good music anymore. Everything musically after that golden time in her life sucks, HARD! C'mon now.
As I said, there are way too many moving parts to speak on for us to draw a conclusion here on why "music today sucks" or why it does not. And this is only part one on this topic. You have the music industry and who it allows on it's airwaves and TV, you have debates on sampling, you have artists not knowing how to play instruments and a million other topics within this discussion, but let's ask the above lady and her types, how much of the "good music" that you love is actually just good memories connected to certain songs and moments? Some may argue that this is the whole purpose of music, to connect it to memories and moments. To me though, judging an entire era of music to be bad simply because it is not the golden era of memories and connections in a persons life is a half baked argument. I believe if we are to say something sucks, we should be able to explain why. And also be able to explain why what we love and refer to as good or great is what we claim it is. A new generation is coming up now who will connect a special moment along with good and funny memories to Cardi B's "I Like It Like That" , while their parents may say that song is total garbage. The younger one may be in the same wonderful state of mind with first crushes, nothing but homework to do, Fortnite, first party with big sounds, and so on. "And at that first party Cardi B "I Like It Like That" was playing and this girl was dancing all up on me man. I LOVE that song hehehe"..... Now this guy sounds like the same guy I knew talking about how Notorious B.I.G.'s "Big Poppa" "had the ladies all up on him" at a party he went to. But another guy thought "Big Poppa" butchered "Between The Sheets" from the Isley Brothers, saying "Between The Sheets" was "REAL MUSIC".
Just a couple of different angles to look at it from.
What do you think ? And Why ?
Let us know :)
We'll talk next about who controls what we hear commercially and why there is always "good music" being made.