What has happened to the political and social activism of music; the music that once attempted to speak out and convey important messages.  Today, mainstream pop music reflects primarily issues of money, sex and greed.  This presents a serious issue, as the youth today become more concerned with instant gratifications, and become less aware of the wider world that exists out there.  Political ignorance is indeed a bi-product of this.  If in the 60’s teenagers were engaged with the political issues surrounding the Vietnam war through artists like Creedence and Bob Dylan, today Justin Beiber entertains the youth market with songs about boyfriends, whilst Kesha sings about getting drunk.  Something is seriously wrong with society if this is what has become of mankind’s greatest creation- music. 

I for one can not understand why music today is not more engaged with the issues that face society.  The world is undergoing greater changes now than ever before in history yet mainstream pop music is burying its head in the sand.  It seems that being politically ignorant has been made to seem cool.  Being disengaged with important issues, and even acting dumb are the ideals set forth by current pop stars.  Where are the songs about climate change or the continuing war in the Middle East?  I’m sure someone could offer some examples, but the point is there is nowhere near the same amount of musical engagement with these issues as there was during the Vietnam War. 

Some may question the point of this.  Why does music even matter to political or social issues?  Well it’s fair to say that for the younger members of Generation Y, the music they’re listening to isn’t encouraging them to take action, but rather head to the nearest nightclub and get plastered!  It’s glorifying a pretend lifestyle of consume more and you’ll be happy.  It basically implies that for all the bad that’s happening in the world, everything will be alright.  Well guess what, everything is NOT going to be alright!

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If you find yourself dissatisfied with mainstream music today, then you’re probably not alone.  Yet given the widespread popularity of what can only be described as mundane music devoid of any artistic credibility, you’d think you were standing alone.  As a lover of classic rock and roll, I’m going to have to try hard not to be biased, yet there are times when I think I might be the only living member of Gen Y with any musical taste left.  Of course there are many gen Y’s out there who love older music and share my opinions of the present, yet it seems the musically ignorant are the target of a music industry intent on appealing to this market.

But why has it come to this?  Is it a simply a case that the gold mine of musical creativity has dried up, or has the drop in creativity been driven by the consumers.  Personally, I don’t accept for one minute that the ideas have run out.  In the last ten years there’s been loads of great music, much of which has come from either artists outside of the mainstream, or from artists who were well established 30 years ago.  But despite this, it seems that the musically ignorant still have priority over the rest of us.  As a result, I and many others like me are force fed with pop music that supposedly everyone likes.  

It’s sad to think that the pop stars of today are even considered to have talent, when the noise they make can hardly be classified as music.  Today the emphasis is on image over sound.  How many of today’s mainstream pop stars can even play a musical instrument?  I’m sick and tired of seeing guitars used as props!  Seriously, if you’re not going to play the thing, don’t hold onto it in a film clip!

What ever happened to good music?

Posted: September 17, 2013 in Music, Uncategorized

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There is something fundamentally wrong with mainstream music today. What ever happened to the music that once attempted to speak out and stand up for what’s right. Today, mainstream pop music reflects primarily issues of money, sex and greed. Consumerism is the glorified commodity of music in the mainstream. But don’t despair. There is still good music out there. It’s time society encouraged the real musicians, who actually have something important to say so that our generation too, can leave a legacy of great music!