What’s the deal with music these days? I know, I know, you’re wondering if your father is writing this article. And after reading that first sentence I’m thinking exactly the same thing. But I still stand behind the question.
If you were born in the mid/late 80s, think back to Middle or High School, ignore all of the bad rap, and focus on Tupac, Biggie, Snoop (before he was receiving his pension) and drool over those boy bands. Be envious of their pop-star girlfriends. Now turn on the radio to your most popular station and take a listen. The bad rap is still there, I’m sorry, that’ll never go away. But listen to the lyrics that are blaring through your speakers. Are you feeling sexy and you know it? Do you have a Hangover because you wanted to Mash it Up? How about Last Night? Did you Pop Bottles? I sure know I didn’t (although that hangover thing may be correct).
The small amount of effort put into these songs is starting to show. Take LMFAO’s ‘Sorry for Party Rocking’. A mash up of previous hit songs with some added terrible techno which is just a bit too much for my arthritic bones to carry. The majority of people listening to this type of music are high-schoolers and college kids (maybe a few geriatrics are letting their freak flag fly, who knows). As far as I know, the users of LMFAO and the like cannot afford bottle service, Patron, Lamborghinis, Caddys, or Louis this, Louis that. What we can afford is cheap beer, strong whiskey, and red solo cups. Down with Webster. You get us. LMFAO you hooked us with Shots, guy who sings that College Song, you definitely got us. But what happened to Alanis Morisette?
All of the TV-shows and movies I watched as a teenager promised me I’d grow some dreads, smell of patchouli, make a difference and stand up to ‘the Man’. Now, I’m up to my eyeballs in debt, and not from educating the brain cells I haven’t drank away, but because I’m trying to keep up with my classmates. Jenni in my kinesiology class is rocking the newest Coach or Louis Vuitton bags, and Jeremy from psychology just threw down a bunch of bills on a new leather jacket and table service.
Nearly every song you hear on pop music stations emphasises drinking, partying, private planes and labels, labels, labels. In order to make it in stardom you must throw out the talent, bring in the auto tune, pull on some LV and start bragging about being Young Money. All these new ‘rap and r&b’ artists seem to know about having a hard life is waiting for their new Birkin bag to come in. Snoop (before he turned into Snoop Lion) and Dre tried to bring back the old school with Kush; adding piano bars and themselves, but it’s still missing the mark.
Now, I cannot be totally unfair, the music industry is always changing. Every generation has a new style of music. Your parents hated your music, as will you hate your children’s taste in music. I’m not here to officially say how terrible music has become, hell, all of the songs cleverly listed above are all on my ipod. Music (as well as society) just needs a kick in the pants, a little bit of soul and a lot more reality (no TV-shows, please). Music needs to be relatable (or own a few guitars and drums) for it to last.
Twenty years from now will generations still be singing ‘Party Rock’? Or ‘Don’t Stop Believin’ ‘? My money’s on the latter. To any aspiring musician out there, prove me wrong. No one wants to be known as the new era of ‘disco’.