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Avicii's 'Wake Me Up' hits 200 million streams in Spotify. Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 2nd March 2014
  #181
I DO love Aloe Blacc's "I Need a Dollar." Now THAT is a catchy song.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #182
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Awesome discussion. Apparently, there are two distinct songwriting critiquing models being used for Wake Me Up. One is a traditional model. Using the information we've learned about songwriting from all of the pop hits recorded over the years, we run this song through the mental centrifuge. Does it pass muster? The other critiquing model is to accept a song on its own terms. No litany of tests. How do I feel right now given the state of current pop culture? Now within that realm, does the song and sound move me? I feel it and many others clearly do too. It is a good song. No looking back, only forward thinking in the new age. History and tradition are confining and oppressive. We refuse to be held back by old school songwriting rules and standards.

The traditional critiquing model is dismissed as irrelevant in today's pop culture. The new critiquing model is considered a slap in the face to schooled songwriters and an insult to pop music heritage, because it seems void of any standards or rules. I see this disconnect widening. The traditional camp is trying to protect something sacred. The new camp is trying to distance themselves from the traditional model. I sense that those who like Wake Me Up, don't feel that the song's contribution to culture going forward is all that important. Why give a single song that much power. Pop culture is changing by the minute. Chill. The traditional camp feels a responsibility for any art placed into the vortex. If the song isn't at least as strong as the pop hits that came before it, it isn't a great song and doesn't deserve its success. The new camp considers that to be an unfair bar to entry. Again, judge the song based solely on today's pop culture climate. If you want to be considered relevant in pop culture going forward, get rid of the baggage, forget all you know about pop songwriting history, stop being overly critical and join us in creating a new world with new standards.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #183
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
I DO love Aloe Blacc's "I Need a Dollar." Now THAT is a catchy song.
He's the country voice on "wake me up." I didn't believe it was him at first.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #184
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Triscuit's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
Indeed. And Aloe Blacc. Was a true cross-genre collab.

https://www.gearslutz.com/board/9895836-post6.html
Totally missed this! I was shocked when I heard last night; and now I hear there is a third culprit?!
Old 2nd March 2014
  #185
Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
He's the country voice on "wake me up." I didn't believe it was him at first.
Interesting. He's certainly a very flexible, professional singer. I can't say anything else I've heard from his own efforts has fired me up the way "Dollar" has -- some of it's pretty by the numbers -- but he definitely seems someone to watch.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #186
Quote:
Originally Posted by HSA7 View Post
Awesome discussion. Apparently, there are two distinct songwriting critiquing models being used for Wake Me Up. One is a traditional model. Using the information we've learned about songwriting from all of the pop hits recorded over the years, we run this song through the mental centrifuge. Does it pass muster? The other critiquing model is to accept a song on its own terms. No litany of tests. How do I feel right now given the state of current pop culture? Now within that realm, does the song and sound move me? I feel it and many others clearly do too. It is a good song. No looking back, only forward thinking in the new age. History and tradition are confining and oppressive. We refuse to be held back by old school songwriting rules and standards.

The traditional critiquing model is dismissed as irrelevant in today's pop culture. The new critiquing model is considered a slap in the face to schooled songwriters and an insult to pop music heritage, because it seems void of any standards or rules. I see this disconnect widening. The traditional camp is trying to protect something sacred. The new camp is trying to distance themselves from the traditional model. I sense that those who like Wake Me Up, don't feel that the song's contribution to culture going forward is all that important. Why give a single song that much power. Pop culture is changing by the minute. Chill. The traditional camp feels a responsibility for any art placed into the vortex. If the song isn't at least as strong as the pop hits that came before it, it isn't a great song and doesn't deserve its success. The new camp considers that to be an unfair bar to entry. Again, judge the song based solely on today's pop culture climate. If you want to be considered relevant in pop culture going forward, get rid of the baggage, forget all you know about pop songwriting history, stop being overly critical and join us in creating a new world with new standards.
[bold added]

This (the bolded section) is how I approach most aesthetic appreciation situations.

And that practice is informed by a long immersion in the periphery of the visual arts scene. I've had a lot of friends who were visual artists (in the real world, my friends pretty much divided -- and overlapped -- in three groups: musicians, visual artists, and their GFs/spouses/etc.)

It was my first GF (a musician, btw) who dragged me through so many museums when we backpacked across Europe that I started getting into it. By the end of that summer, I was pretty hooked. I then went on to work in the music & art department of my uni library for a couple years -- where I would get 'lost' supposedly straightening art books but really immersing myself in the history of (mostly) modern art. And that led to me taking a number of classes studying everything from Chinese and Indian traditional arts to surrealism and dada.

By the time I was hanging out a couple decades later with various visual artists and prowling the galleries and openings with them, I knew a fair amount about contemporary and world art...

... and I'd heard enough thoroughly intellectual discussions of various aesthetic theories and schools of thought that I could argue theory reasonably well (while loaded up on cheap white wine and cheese).

But I ultimately came to what I came to call a post-theoretical aesthetic:

What I liked could not be directly correlated with specific styles or approaches.

That is, one abstract expressionist canvas might really move me, while another would leave me cold. (Which, if you think about that aesthetic, was probably absolutely reasonable.)

One renaissance painting might hold my attention in a museum for 10 minutes -- while another would get a respectful half minute and then... next.

I came to sum up my personal aesthetic thus:

I know a fair amount about art... but, more importantly, I know what I like.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #187
I like pop, but I think much of todays EDM pop/rap is quite boring. You have basically heard it all before if you liked and listened trance in "golden years". I personally think a great pop song is something that combines the familiar formula/catchy melody with something new/creative.

I find Wake me up is utter boring, the most irritating part is all the other acts jumping on the country/dance bandwagon like Pitbull/Ke$ha - Timber and for instance some crappy norwegian pop acts getting in on a piece of the cake:

Vi Er by Cir.Cuz on Spotify (complete ripoff of wake me up)
Bleik og sur by Katastrofe on Spotify

Aviciis best work if you ask me is his mix of Tim Bergs seek bromance which was pretty good. You can hear that he uses this song as more or less as a blueprint for his other songs escp the buildups/breakdowns.

And I am also not a fond of "EDM" people using vengeance samples and nexus presets (sure you can get away with it a few times, but not in every song)
Old 2nd March 2014
  #188
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deepc0re View Post
And I am also not a fond of "EDM" people using vengeance samples and nexus presets (sure you can get away with it a few times, but not in every song)
There are probably more that 10,000 Vengeance kick samples alone. Even if you just stick to Vengeance samples without any other layers (which most aren't doing), you still have exponentially more sonic drum options than using a 909 like most every trance track in the 90s, or 808s in hip hop, or the Linn drum in the 80s.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #189
Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
There are probably more that 10,000 Vengeance kick samples alone. Even if you just stick to Vengeance samples, you still have exponentially more sonic drum options than using a 909 like most every trance track in the 90s, or 808s in hip hop.
With samples I mean loops (used straight) and sound FXs etc. Should have specified that.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #190
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
... and I'd heard enough thoroughly intellectual discussions of various aesthetic theories and schools of thought that I could argue theory reasonably well (while loaded up on cheap white wine and cheese). But I ultimately came to what I came to call a post-theoretical aesthetic: What I liked could not be directly correlated with specific styles or approaches.

You're probably a happier person for it.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #191
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eldon2975 View Post
So, you resort to calling people snobs
"Snob" has to do with attitude. It has nothing to do with particular tastes, beliefs, etc. It has to do with the attitude with which tastes and beliefs are expressed. I don't know why that's so often misunderstood, but it is.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #192
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deepc0re View Post
I like pop, but I think much of todays EDM pop/rap is quite boring. You have basically heard it all before if you liked and listened trance in "golden years". I personally think a great pop song is something that combines the familiar formula/catchy melody with something new/creative.

I find Wake me up is utter boring, the most irritating part is all the other acts jumping on the country/dance bandwagon like Pitbull/Ke$ha - Timber and for instance some crappy norwegian pop acts getting in on a piece of the cake:

Vi Er by Cir.Cuz on Spotify (complete ripoff of wake me up)
Bleik og sur by Katastrofe on Spotify

Aviciis best work if you ask me is his mix of Tim Bergs seek bromance which was pretty good. You can hear that he uses this song as more or less as a blueprint for his other songs escp the buildups/breakdowns.

And I am also not a fond of "EDM" people using vengeance samples and nexus presets (sure you can get away with it a few times, but not in every song)
This kind of pffft he just uses loops and preset, was a phase for me. I think it's normal for 'muscians' to feel this way because it feels like there was no mastery required. I used to feel indignant too, but I've now let go of this.

I've changed my mind since, because really what's important to me is how the listener reacts. Are you writing for yourself, is this an intellectual exercise?

Also how many times have we heard an acoustic guitar been used in a track, do we frown on this overly used trope? What about the overly tired structural elements of verse and chorus? How many different sounding kick drums do we need?
Old 2nd March 2014
  #193
Quote:
Originally Posted by HSA7 View Post
You're probably a happier person for it.
Absolutely.

Much of my artistic, aesthetic growth has involved me overcoming various forms of snobbishness.

And that really hits home when I look back on some of the stuff that (often thoroughly misplaced) snobbishness almost really robbed me of.

Like when I almost didn't 'bother' to see Louis Armstrong and a reconstituted Hot Five playing on the Mark Twain 'paddle wheeler' riverboat that goes around Tom Sawyer's Island at Disneyland. I was more into 'modern' jazz and had been checking out Stan Kenton and so on in the Carnation venue on Main Street. I thought I was too hip. But I almost missed the first time I ever felt 'musical ecstasy' (or whatever we want to call it, I'm sure most of you know precisely what I mean, that feeling that, you know, it just doesn't get any better than this, right now, right here -- and if you don't know that feeling, damn, I hope you find it)... an amazing show. And, of course, incredible 'bragging rights' (which I'm exercising right now, see what I'm doing here? heh ) having seen a real giant of 20th century music from about 10 feet away.

(Now, in my defense, I was, like, 14 and, while I knew Pops Armstrong was a jazz legend who helped define jazz in the 1920s, I figured he'd be doing the pop kind of stuff like Hello Dolly that had given him a big hit a year or two earlier and was still on the pop radio stations. Even so, I'd kind of written off trad jazz as 'Dixieland' which I'd gone through a phase of liking when I was in grade school and which was often around when I was growing up in the form of amateur groups of suburban white guys -- which was, God love those guys, a mixed bag.)


Anyhow, it's fun to be 'hip' sometimes -- but you really have to watch out for when it gets in the way of liking something you would actually really like if you weren't so damn hip.


That said, being a snob did protect me from ever getting sucked into buying a Three Dog Night album. heh
Old 2nd March 2014
  #194
Quote:
Originally Posted by stclair View Post
This kind of pffft he just uses loops and preset, was a phase for me. I think it's normal for 'muscians' to feel this way because it feels like there was no mastery required. I used to feel indignant too, but I've now let go of this.

I've changed my mind since, because really what's important to me is how the listener reacts. Are you writing for yourself, is this an intellectual exercise?

Also how many times have we heard an acoustic guitar been used in a track, do we frown on this overly used trope? What about the overly tired structural elements of verse and chorus? How many different sounding kick drums do we need?
Who is the listener then? You? Average joe? Mr preset/loop spotter?

You don´t have a great track until you impress all of them :P

Sure there is nothing wrong using a preset or a drum loop (straight forward) once in a while (Umbrella is not any less catchy because of the garageband drum loop).

But EDM relies so heavily on sound design and production compared to for instance country or rock songs. So in MY book I think its less impressive if you have to rely on presets/ready made loops in every song.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #195
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deepc0re View Post
Who is the listener then? You? Average joe? Mr preset/loop spotter?

You don´t have a great track until you impress all of them :P

Sure there is nothing wrong using a preset or a drum loop (straight forward) once in a while (Umbrella is not any less catchy because of the garageband drum loop).

But EDM relies so heavily on sound design and production compared to for instance country or rock songs. So in MY book I think its less impressive if you have to rely on presets/ready made loops in every song.
Well think about it, are you making music for other musicians who are judging you on your whizzy sounds design and production tricks?

The sound design and production is to serve the purpose of the song to excite the listener. Its a means to an end not the end, unless of course you don't care how many people listen to your song. It's not to communicate to other producers how well you can automate a filter or layer a synth.

Why does house music use a 4 to the floor kick at 128bpm, because it makes people want to dance.

Why do you automate, because people get bored and there is no tension.

Yes a great song you would think would do both, but do not be suprised that it isn't necessary to be avantgarde or completely out of the box in terms of production or timbre selections for "commerical success". If you don't care about commerical success then carry on twiddling knobs just to be different, and recreating a kick drum that's already been created instead of worrying about the emotional impact of what you are doing.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #196
Quote:
Originally Posted by stclair View Post
Yes a great song you would think would do both, but do not be suprised that it isn't necessary to be avantgarde or completely out of the box in terms of production or timbre selections for "commerical success". If you don't care about commerical success then carry on twiddling knobs just to be different, and recreating a kick drum that's already been created instead of worrying about the emotional impact of what you are doing.

You are talking like its not possible to make popular songs with your "own" sounds. That you have to take the "fast-food" approach.

Yeah sure you might have commercial success but for how long? The listener will eventually get tired especially when everything sounds same. Many artists have just one or a few hits, why do you think that is?
Old 3rd March 2014
  #197
Gear Addict
 
stclair's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by deepc0re View Post
You are talking like its not possible to make popular songs with your "own" sounds. That you have to take the "fast-food" approach.

Yeah sure you might have commercial success but for how long? The listener will eventually get tired especially when everything sounds same. Many artists have just one or a few hits, why do you think that is?
No you're putting words in my mouth and trying complicating things. There is another space for talking about longevity. In this case when people get tired of the EDM country cross over I'm sure Tim won't be getting his 200 million spotify plays anymore, until then it seems to have hit a orgasmic nerve.

Also you're kind of agreeing with me in your last point. Without going into details I allude to this in an earlier comment that the fusion of EDM and country is a mix of something familiar yet new. This is a fresh sound yet not completely avantgarde or outside of the box. This is no different from creating a new timbre for interest to perk the ears. I strongly believe that the secret formula is the novel + familiar. An novel doesn't have to be reinvented just something that's out of fashion, or uncommon.

Production and timbres will always come in an out of fashion that's a given just like rock and rap has in favor for electronica.



I've personally never listened to a song and thought 'oh sheeit!' thats a arp from Nexus, I don't like it now. Never. And I bet no one does. It's how its used in the context of the entire composition thats important. Musician might think like that "oh noes the amen break AGAIN", because familiarity breeds contempt, but the general population or club are usually too far removed from it. Maybe one day they will be bored with the Pryda Snare?

Anyway my take home message is focus on the tools and not the end point at your folly.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #198
Quote:
Originally Posted by stclair View Post
No you're putting words in my mouth and trying complicating things. There is another space for talking about longevity. In this case when people get tired of the EDM country cross over I'm sure Tim won't be getting his 200 million spotify plays anymore, until then it seems to have hit a orgasmic nerve.

Also you're kind of agreeing with me in your last point. Without going into details I allude to this in an earlier comment that the fusion of EDM and country is a mix of something familiar yet new. This is a fresh sound yet not completely avantgarde or outside of the box. This is no different from creating a new timbre for interest to perk the ears. I strongly believe that the secret formula is the novel + familiar. An novel doesn't have to be reinvented just something that's out of fashion, or uncommon.

Production and timbres will always come in an out of fashion that's a given just like rock and rap has in favor for electronica.



I've personally never listened to a song and thought 'oh sheeit!' thats a arp from Nexus, I don't like it now. Never. And I bet no one does. It's how its used in the context of the entire composition thats important. Musician might think like that "oh noes the amen break AGAIN", because familiarity breeds contempt, but the general population or club are usually too far removed from it. Maybe one day they will be bored with the Pryda Snare?

Anyway my take home message is focus on the tools and not the end point at your folly.
I agree with everything you are saying and the novel + familiar was just what I was saying in one of my previous posts.

Like I also said earlier. ME personally liked Avicii's mix of Seek Bromance because his sound and production where kind of "fresh". But now I can't listen to any of his (or swedish house mafia, or garrix blabla) other songs because the only thing I can hear is nexus and sylenth1 presets, the exact same pitched buildups, tape-stops etc etc. Sure Averge Joe doesn't might not give a crap for now, but I personally care and find it utter boring.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #199
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1 View Post
This is where you're wrong. Underlying motivations never need to enter into the picture, unless the artist themselves has brought them to the table. Otherwise, the base assumption is that people do what they like.

You're not a mind reader. Negatively passing judgement on the unknown reasons for why someone does something is quite sanctimonious. You're really stretching to put yourself up on a pedestal in order to needlessly criticize other people from a personal place, when the discussion should stop at the analysis of their music.
This is where you are wrong, and people are indeed allowed to speculate about motives, but you don't have to if you'd prefer not to. I and others are allowed to speculate on the motives behind the latest Justin Bieber release, the latest Lady Gaga release, the latest Dr. Luke project and the latest McDonalds commercial.

If "like" in this context means the Pavlovian response to consistently receiving huge monetary rewards for providing predictably vacuous product based more on marketing hype than substance, then the speculation about motives is more than justified. Especially if the given industry has effectively shut out (via monopolization) all alternative approaches.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #200
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HSA7 View Post
Awesome discussion. Apparently, there are two distinct songwriting critiquing models being used for Wake Me Up. One is a traditional model. Using the information we've learned about songwriting from all of the pop hits recorded over the years, we run this song through the mental centrifuge. Does it pass muster? The other critiquing model is to accept a song on its own terms. No litany of tests. How do I feel right now given the state of current pop culture? Now within that realm, does the song and sound move me? I feel it and many others clearly do too. It is a good song. No looking back, only forward thinking in the new age. History and tradition are confining and oppressive. We refuse to be held back by old school songwriting rules and standards.

The traditional critiquing model is dismissed as irrelevant in today's pop culture. The new critiquing model is considered a slap in the face to schooled songwriters and an insult to pop music heritage, because it seems void of any standards or rules. I see this disconnect widening. The traditional camp is trying to protect something sacred. The new camp is trying to distance themselves from the traditional model. I sense that those who like Wake Me Up, don't feel that the song's contribution to culture going forward is all that important. Why give a single song that much power. Pop culture is changing by the minute. Chill. The traditional camp feels a responsibility for any art placed into the vortex. If the song isn't at least as strong as the pop hits that came before it, it isn't a great song and doesn't deserve its success. The new camp considers that to be an unfair bar to entry. Again, judge the song based solely on today's pop culture climate. If you want to be considered relevant in pop culture going forward, get rid of the baggage, forget all you know about pop songwriting history, stop being overly critical and join us in creating a new world with new standards.
How about instead of just 2 camps to conform to, we allow each individual to have a set of opinionated standards which are uniquely their own ?
Old 3rd March 2014
  #201
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eldon2975 View Post
This is where you are wrong, and people are indeed allowed to speculate about motives, but you don't have to if you'd prefer not to. I and others are allowed to speculate on the motives behind the latest Justin Bieber release, the latest Lady Gaga release, the latest Dr. Luke project and the latest McDonalds commercial.

If "like" in this context means the pavlovian response to consistently recieving huge monetary rewards for providing predictably vacuous product based more on marketing hype than substance, then the speculation about motives is more than justified. Especially if the given industry has effectively shut out (via monopolization) all alternative approaches.
Yep.

If I'm not mistaken, new guy1 is the very person who said that writers in Luke's general team get to ascend to the inner circle of writers, not when they have proven they write at an incredible level, but when they have had some "hits". i.e. the metric is financial success which says all that needs to be said about the prime motivation of these folks. There's nothing wrong with that per se but lets not kid ourselves here acting out some bs PC charade. There's a reason hip-hoppers call it "the game" and it's nothing whatsoever to do with music. The same applies to these pop-poppers.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #202
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carnalia Barcus View Post
"Snob" has to do with attitude. It has nothing to do with particular tastes, beliefs, etc. It has to do with the attitude with which tastes and beliefs are expressed. I don't know why that's so often misunderstood, but it is.
And your attitude is to get agitated and interventionist when someone dares to dislike something you happen to like. It's as if you want to grab them by the scruff of the neck, rub their nose in it (or put their ear against the speaker) while saying "you must accept and enjoy this as I do".

The point you fail to comprehend is that they are not telling you that you have to reject it because they do, but you are effectively telling them they are not allowed to reject it for their own reasons, and must abide by your omni-acceptance routine.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #203
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deepc0re View Post
Sure Averge Joe doesn't might not give a crap for now, but I personally care and find it utter boring.
You're not the only one bored by it, and don't let anyone tell you that you have to abandon your own set of personal critical standards simply because they personally find them threatening, annoying and/or inappropriate.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #204
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herr Weiss View Post
Delusional fanboi's ignore list must be a mile long.

Giving away cookies now.



HW
I've come to the temporary and flexible conclusion that he isn't happy with the endlessly free self-promotion this site gives him and his ambitious career, and that he's one of those hyper-sensitive individuals who demands that no one say anything negative about anything, lest they ruin his day.

I was really actually trying to salute his previously stated ethical stipulation as something totally desirable, even though it may have been naive.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #205
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I agree with eldon's points, which are made politely and eloquently.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #206
Quote:
Originally Posted by creegstor View Post
Yep.

If I'm not mistaken, new guy1 is the very person who said that writers in Luke's general team get to ascend to the inner circle of writers, not when they have proven they write at an incredible level, but when they have had some "hits". i.e. the metric is financial success which says all that needs to be said about the prime motivation of these folks. There's nothing wrong with that per se but lets not kid ourselves here acting out some bs PC charade. There's a reason hip-hoppers call it "the game" and it's nothing whatsoever to do with music. The same applies to these pop-poppers.
Actually, you need to be pretty good to make hit songs!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Always Right View Post
I agree with eldon's points, which are made politely and eloquently.
Ya ok, nice try, 6 posts in and we're not gonna believe it's eldon using 2 usernames... Sure.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #207
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Lago View Post
Ya ok, nice try, 6 posts in and we're not gonna believe it's eldon using 2 usernames... Sure.
I have no idea who that person is, but it's definitely NOT ME.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #208
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Lago View Post
Actually, you need to be pretty good to make hit songs!
In the current climate, it means being pretty good at predictably & frivolously pandering to the lowest possible common denominator and repressing a freely expressive, emotively inspired, uniquely imaginative approach.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #209
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Lago View Post
Actually, you need to be pretty good to make hit songs!




Ya ok, nice try, 6 posts in and we're not gonna believe it's eldon using 2 usernames... Sure.
I assure you I'm not him. I just thought everyone was trashing his thoughts a bit too much, when they're actually fairly well written.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #210
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Quote:
Originally Posted by creegstor View Post
... some bs PC charade. There's a reason hip-hoppers call it "the game" and it's nothing whatsoever to do with music.
Yeah, the politically correct, entirely mindless, "playing the game" agenda seems to be about hoarding people into a uniformity of opinion. It really tries to stifle scrutiny, repress critical faculties and get a mass conformist impulse to be at the mercy of what the top of the pyramid orders (or tries to compel) people to do or accept.

And that usually involves keeping the party going, keeping the cash flow and high levels of personal debt moving (channeled upwards), not ruffling any feathers, obeying the commands of those above you in the hierarchy, and basically being a faithful participant in the roboculture.
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