I listen to a lot of modern music with a very apathetic ear. I don’t really internalize most of what’s being made, other than a very new genre which could be described as a digital revival of jazz or the original jazz.
My reason for doing this is I don’t see much music today as art. I see many modern artists as no so much creative in their musical abilities, but provocative. Not so much ingenious in their rhythm, but shocking. There is an artistic value to shocking an audience. However, when an artistic period makes provocative art the mainstream, it’s the artist with independent vision who remains the real shocker.
I don’t see much of that anymore.
I look through museums too, where there are entire exhibits dedicated to abstract paintings which are either blank canvases with very subtle work done, or scattershot of color beyond form. I have always thought, the first person to do this, to make a painting of nothing, or of chaotic color, was a genius. Everyone to follow was a phony.
As I look at such things as the genre of rap music, or the era of bad paintings that I believe we are in now, I view much of what is being created as a copy of the past that does not venture into the future. The first few rappers to take to the art, I believe set the genre. The ones that followed, often to shock the world through their art, I view as artistic disappointments, and where a genre or period of creativity is born violently, those who simply copy the motions of those who came before, commit a violence against art itself.
Recently, I listened to this album by an artist named Saint Pepsi, and I loved it. The sound was like nothing I’d ever heard before, it was new, it was joyous, it was fun. This is the genre of art I like to hear because it has not yet become infected with the artists who are simply trying to copy pre-existing genius. I believe art should be born violently into the world, but that repeating its birth will not give back the beauty of its entrance.
With that said, I believe the greatest antidote to what poisons art is time. Time will wash away the crap artists who gave nothing to the art but copy and pasted aesthetics, and raise the true geniuses. It will dispel the Iggy Azaleas, and raise up the Freddy Mercury’s. Time will wash away the crap from art, and leave the value, and the sustaining beauty with it. That’s the problem with art based on shock value, you can only be shocked once.
Until next time,