Now, anyone who knows me knows that I really (and I mean really) love music. I need music to function. I consider myself to be eclectic in my tastes. I owe that all to growing up in the eighties and early-nineties born unto parents who listened to anything from The Manhattans to Guns ‘n Roses. However, as I grow older I find myself leaning more and more toward smooth and acid jazz and alternative rock. I suppose it has something to do with the lyricism and emotion.
Talking about lyricism…I find the lyrics of most of the new songs coming out to be nonsensical. As if people no longer have anything (of value) to say. We now deal with watered down Hip Hop. Music with some rhythm but no real blues. Little rock with too much roll.
I have not birthed any children of my own…but I do have a few by extension (thanks to friends and family). I find that I enjoy the conversation of those young’uns in the throes of teenagedom immensely.
Every Friday a young master and I have something he’s dubbed The Musication (music education). We listen to whatever is playing on the radio or CD play and discuss. What I’ve discovered br
ings me so much joy. The child – I beg your pardon – young man who agrees that lyrically most of today’s music is bankrupt. Morally. Not worth the listen. He prefers Rhythm and Blues and AfroBeats/House.
I already have him recognising the sounds of Casiopia. He asks questions. So many questions. His interest piqued, he asks about other artists. We dabble a bit with old and new. By this I am forced to lend my ear to the hedonistic and debauched music of our current day. It makes me wonder how many of us take the time to really pay attention to what’s out there today. What are the children of today listening to?
I can remember my parents banning the Outhere Brothers, Salt-N-Pepa and Color Me Bad. Back then I was outraged. Rather listening to them on the sly on my walkman. Playing my Good Hope FM dubbed mixtape (those who were teens in the eighties and nineties know what I mean…play and pause). Listening to those songs I loved so much then (and still love today), I realise they’re certainly not kosher for the (hopefully) tender ears of a child…now… How many kids (and maybe some young adults) have the capacity to fully grasp the poetic melodies and spitfire by artists such as the great Tupac Shakur and Bone Thugs n Harmony. Let’s not throw away the politically sultry Ms. Janet (Jackson) who one minute would lose “Control” and the next would tell us “We are a part of the Rhythm Nation” (great song by the way). How many could appreciate the musicality of geniuses like Prince, Quincy Jones and Michael Jackson (yes people like his music, but do they understand it)? The sheer audacity of Aerosmith, Nirvana and Depeche Mode?
Because music has reached a state of commercialism that sickens and saddens me, I am looking at Indie and Underground artists and also some lesser known artists by country…and man…are there gems out there! Young folk still wanting to make music for the sake of making music. I’ve stumbled upon a gentleman called Son Little recently. He is not very mainstream. The soulful timbre of his husky voice…The man can sing! There’s another artist, a pianist, by the name of Marc Carey who is utterly gifted. I cannot find their music in stores so I Youtube the heck out of them. It’s quite rewarding.
I wish we could get to a place where music makes sense once again. Where it’s not all about the money and fame. Where the intention is sincere.
So I’ll be scouring Youtube for artists I find apealing (old and new) and highlight them on my other blog The Zenith of Sound