You’re a whinging old person, you just don’t know it yet

“Music just isn’t the same as it used to be,” moans Facebook.
“Back in my day the music was so much better... I don’t know what the world is coming to.”

I disagree. My central thesis is that personal music taste has to move, adapt, and evolve, reflecting that music, and musical taste is fluid, changing over time. This means what is “good” or worth listening to changes over time, as new music is released. To close your mind to this is to risk being an old bore, who moans after “the classics” not realising this is exactly what their parents and grandparents did before them.

Behind this moan, is the danger of each new generation seeing its interpretation of the world and music as superior to what has gone before, and what will come in the future. Therefore, what I think is best... is best... Not realising that what is “best” is more likely to be centered around a particular point in time, most likely during the late formative teenage years and early adulthood.

Now I’m not saying there isn’t a place for classic and enduring songs (I strongly believe there is) rather that this list is ever growing as new musical styles etc are discovered. As listeners we need to be open to hearing new music, and dare I say learning to like what is new. Quick pop quiz when was the last time you “liked” a new song or band that was released in the last 12 months? (I’m not talking about U2 and Coldplay. They are bands for old people). When did you last find a new piece of music to buy?

I’m not suggesting you run out and buy the latest number one hit far from it. History teaches us that what is and what is good don’t always go hand in hand. Far better to seek to educate yourself especially if you don’t have good taste (which I don’t). Ask people around you especially if they’re younger, ask them why they like what they do. Be open to listening to things that you don’t like, seem childish, feel uncomfortable or stupid. Be open minded to being persuaded, suspend judgement until you’ve heard a song a number of times. Even be prepared to read lyrics and bios on Wikipedia and the like before making a conclusion. Read music reviews from people who know about these kind of things there’s truckloads of them on the internet. Expand. Your. Mind.

You need to do this, otherwise you risk sounding like another old person who sits in judgement over all generations before and after you. The danger is you could end up being a whinging old person without knowing it.



Mikey Lynch said... 8/04/2013 1:00 pm  

I disagree (slightly).

There are golden eras of music, like 1964-69, 1978-84, 1991-97 and 2004-2010.

The grumpy ol' guy could just be pointing out that we are in between golden eras...

mike said... 8/04/2013 9:40 pm  

Your comments and observations are welcome here. I feel a little less sure of the 2004-2010 era.

Anthony Rochester said... 8/05/2013 8:01 am  

But what if I think the golden eras were 70-77, 85-90, 98-03?

Anthony Rochester said... 8/05/2013 8:03 am  

And what if I'm not into Bob Dylan and the Beatles?

Mikey Lynch said... 8/05/2013 8:12 am  

You can wait over there. With the Eagles, John Farnham and Limp Bizkit.

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