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Forum nameThe Lesson
Topic subjectWhen exactly did the public become untrustworthy for music?
Topic URLhttp://board.okayplayer.com/okp.php?az=show_topic&forum=5&topic_id=2671597
2671597, When exactly did the public become untrustworthy for music?
Posted by Errol Walton Barrow, Fri Mar-09-12 01:51 PM
If you look back to the Billboard charts of the decades past, some songs were forgettable, some songs were really slept on, but the ones that hit were legitimately seen as good songs from critics and fans, even to this day, obvious examples being Motown hits, girl group hits like "Be My Baby" and so on.

Then it seemed like there came a point where critics were heralding different songs than what the public liked, I don't know when this was (early 80s? I dunno)and this was when music snobs and 'guilty pleasures' grew and grew, to the point where now, if you want to be a true music fan, you would never tout liking the top 40 hits of Black Eyed Peas, or Rhianna and such, even if their choruses are sometimes better written than the erykah badus and Big KRITs of the world. I don't think thirty years from now cool critics will look kindly on Gaga and such like we look kindly on The Ronnettes or The Supremes. Why is that?

It's deeper now than not liking a Pop artist though. Us music snobs and such don't even know how these people can be so popular. Even the outsiders of yesteryear got why Michael Jackson was everywhere, rap heads that hated Cool J's "I need Love" understood why it was on the radio. But nowadays the popularity of Rhianna's "Birthday Girl" or Lil B's "I own Swag" is perplexing. The divide is so deep that even the pathology of stardom is lost on alot of folks. What song was the opening shot of this civil war?
2671613, the public always just listens to whatever is there.
Posted by Joe Corn Mo, Fri Mar-09-12 02:31 PM
and 90 percent of whatever
the public was listening to was always crap.

i DO think that the crackdown of payloa
actually hurt the quality of music in this regard.

i mean... there was always a machine to get the good stuff
some mass exposure to the public.

now that music machine is sort of broken,
so the public just consumes whatever they get.
which is again, for the most part,

just like it always was.

2671651, I think this is right. Whether we are going through golden eras
Posted by Buddy_Gilapagos, Fri Mar-09-12 04:16 PM
of music or prolong periods of non-innovation in music, the buying public is always there. SO the public I don't think have ever been a good standard for judging the value of music AT LEAST not for music out during their time. Current Critics are all that reliable either. I think the true test is time.

When folks and critics are still gaga about an album 10 years out, then you are on to something.

Peace to the Gods.
2671616, the premise of this is odd
Posted by Selah, Fri Mar-09-12 02:37 PM
you seem to say that critical acclaim should trump the taste of the public - or at least is more trustworthy/credible

i dunno about that

there are plenty of cases where something is panned and then later determined to be good

likewise there are cases where "bad" music sold tons despite being hated by "experts"

assuming your premise was NOT problematic, i think it predates the rock and roll era for sure

critics do not always know what to do with new and/or different

jazz used to be considered as lowbrow for example

2671624, There's always been a divide that's true
Posted by Errol Walton Barrow, Fri Mar-09-12 03:00 PM
Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" was seen as watered down and full of weak melodies influenced by the 'lowbrow' jazz that you mentioned, now it's a national treasure.

Maybe the premise is muddy because I have no horse in the race. Alot of critics to me chase aesthetic and trends as much as fans do, except they like 'outsider' aesthetics moreso. That said I argue that there was more over-lap some time ago, and even if the critics resisted new musical styles initially, they still accepted after a while. Then I think that pattern broke down, where increasingly top 40 music was derided by critics, till now, where the two rarely meet. I think critical darling Bon Iver's uncomfortable grammy speech is emblematic of this.

I believe I led you astray with the last sentence in my opening post, the 'opening shot in a civil war' thing, making it seem like the rift wasn't always there when it was. But
i feel like both camps drifted further apart at some point, I just don't know when.
2671670, given this....
Posted by Selah, Fri Mar-09-12 05:12 PM
>But i feel like both camps drifted further apart at some point, I
>just don't know when.

explain adele
2671691, if there were five adele's I wouldn't think they drifted
Posted by Errol Walton Barrow, Fri Mar-09-12 06:07 PM
Alot of her popularity and Amy's for that matter seems to be other generations and critics pining for 'better' music and finding it with them. Put her back in the days when Pop vocalists like Barbra streisand, Liza and sarah vaughn sold racks of records, and I don't think she holds down the Billboard charts for 54 weeks like she has so far.

She's treated as an anomaly rather than the rule. Still, artists like her and Norah Jones show there is still consensus at times.
2671635, New Kids on the Block was popular in my high school days
Posted by c71, Fri Mar-09-12 03:37 PM
then Nsync and Britney Spears were popular in my adulthood, so the public seems to be doing better to me with the Rihanna's, Gym Class heroes, and Maroon 5's and the new pop craze to me (I really hated lot's of pop from the time of NKOTB to Nsync, that was when I thought the public was off when it comes to supporting good music).

I know people are sad that black kids don't mind their stars messing with "mainstream" sounding tracks, but eh, hip-hop's not for me anymore.
2671688, Could be wrong but sterilization of radio might have been a factor
Posted by zuma1986, Fri Mar-09-12 06:03 PM
Radio has continually slimmed down not only the range of music it plays but also the number of songs. Top 40 used to actually mean something and any song that was placed within it was considered a hit. Now if it's not top 10 and played all day it's not a hit. How did that create a split? B/c ppl are fed one sound all day long and although sure many ppl get their music from downloading and such radio still has an influence. The problem is that although music has always been about trends, when it's narrowed in this much it's harder to have a drastic change. Where as critics are fed all the albums that come out and champion a wider range of music and go through many changes of taste.
2671694, Radio has been tamed a lot over the decade
Posted by Errol Walton Barrow, Fri Mar-09-12 06:13 PM
so, that puts it after the telecommunications act of 1996 when the record companies were absorbed into the huge media companies and bought up radio stations. After that, radio really started to be reduced to a rotation of ten songs five times a day. It's a good case for a starting point.
2671703, There's No Civil War, People Have Always Been Casual Listeners,,,,
Posted by Harlepolis, Fri Mar-09-12 06:58 PM