Music is like the Bathurst 1000; I long for the good old days

Posted: October 11, 2013 in Uncategorized
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What is it about the past that gets people so infatuated?  The Music of the mid 20th century is often considered the greatest of all time, yet it’s had 50 years to get better with age.   Certain songs and artists are surrounded by a certain level of mystique.  For example, when I was a kid, I was convinced that there was some kind of divine intervention in the creation of Stairway to Heaven.

Now people will always argue that music changes with time.  You can either embrace it or hate it, yet isn’t it funny how so often, what we consider to be the best is already behind us? 


So on the eve of Australia’s great race, the Bathurst 1000, it’s fitting to take a look at the history of the race and how everyone who follows seems so obsessive over the past.  The ‘good old days’ was a time when the drivers were larrikins and the cars were relatively stock standard and dangerously fast.  There was enough diversity to keep any race punter entertained with more makes than you could poke a stick at.

These days all the cars are identical, and the racing is closer than ever.   I like the old days but if 2013 turns out  to be a repeat of Peter Brock’s six lap annihilation of 1979, I’ll be very disappointed. People can reminisce, but the last 5 years of Bathurst have been the most exciting in its long history.

It’s funny how the gift of hindsight makes us see the world differently.  People have such a longing for the past to the point that they remember things as being better than they really were.  We tend to romanticise about past events and people creating a false sense of them. 

John Lennon seems to have suffered this fate as has Elvis.  In death they’ve become such symbols of pop culture and remembered so fondly by so many people.  But have their legacies been blown out of proportion?  If they came back would they laugh at the way people still idolise and adore them?  

So if we fast forward to today’s pop stars, with their mass following, it’s interesting to contemplate how they might be viewed in 20 years.  Are we going to look back on this time in music history with fondness a say ‘That Justin Beiber sure was a legend’  or ‘Gee I miss Miley Cyrus, she was such a good advocate for women’s rights.’ 

 Are we going to remember this time in music history as being better than it really was?

What do you guys think?

  1. A common question asked though out the music buffs today. One thing that needs to be distinguished however is the reason as to why music throughout history made such an impact socially and culturally and flowed through after its death is because it was original, topical and created movements.
    The counter culture movement throughout the 60’s and 70’s was a cultural phenomenon. Artists were creating music influenced by the hardships at the time. There was no such thing as social media so they carried their thoughts through music and touched society on a another level inspiring them to make change. Artist like Bob Dylan, Sixto Rodriguez, John Lennon, triggered movements against race relations, human sexuality, women’s rights and traditional modes of authority. It is interesting to debate weather music today will be remembered. Nothing is knew anymore, and everything seems possible therefor there are no surprises. Music needs to get back to its roots and not be disguised by auto tuning and fancy fx. It needs to be raw, meaningful and relevant to the development of society.

    • 100% agree with you here. As I’ve been thinking about this a lot, it seems to me that today’s music industry is made up of people who are good at being famous. Many artists from the past were not so, they were disenfranchised with the whole celebrity lifestyle and society in general. Our society still faces problems, in fact today it’s arguably worse, yet society doesn’t seem to want to listen to music that shows us our flaws. people would rather stick their head in the sand and drown out the problems of the world with noise.

  2. simonconyard says:

    Loved the combination of Bathurst with the dilemmas in the music industry today. Being a ‘Bon Jovi’ fan my opinion will probably not be valued but I’ve noticed a lot of music in the mid noughties from pop artists like Timberland just don’t age well and are just a product of that period of time.

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