Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Axis of Awesome

Recommended Posts

Pretty funny.


Reminds me of this video for some reason (think it's all the song stringing lol)




On the subject of musical comedians, Rodney Carrington is one of my favorites (warning, potentially NWS) -


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

nice, 4 chords a lot of songs...




Must admit that made me laugh and the bad thing is it's true... no originality in music anymore... :drinks::rofl:

Edited by Slartibartfast

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Not really surprising. Entertainment in any form that appeals to the masses has been reduced to simple easy to repeat formulas: movies, sitcoms, reality shows, books, etc. With music being more akin to mathematics than any other form, it makes sense the those seeking to make millions selling music figured out a formula that works and haven't failed yet. Consider all the '60s pop/rock'n'roll hits. There were a handful of writers cranking out most of the hit songs while the groups that sang them were often composed of random people, some of whome were not even talented in any way shape or form. Some of the girl groups swapped out members as necessary to keep the group cheap and on the road. At best, Peter and Mike of the Monkees were actually musicians. Need I mention later versions like Milli-Vanilli? There are some greats that are wholly original that lead the new waves of music rather than followed. David Bowie constantly went down new paths and stayed on top for almost 20 years. Like her or not, Madonna was a trend setter for about the same length of time. At the other end of the spectrum are groups like the Beach Boys who were stuck singing the same ten songs for their entire lives with very few exceptions.


I did find it interesting comparing their list tof my own CD collection. I counted about 38 songs in their routine and I have 17 of them. While the chords may be similar or even the same in all of those songs, chords are not unlike percussion. Most songs could be reduced to chords and a drum beat and sound very similar. What really stands out in most songs is the melody and/or the voices used to sing them as well as the arrangement of instruments used to play them.


Musical styles that focus on the beat with little or no melody all sound the same to me. My wife is from Colombia and all Latin reggaetón songs sound the same to me: loud obnoxious percussion accented with some periodic catch phrase. There is even one song I have heard at every Latin party or club I have ever been to with the reptitive catch phrase being "gas-o-li-na" pronounced "gas" "oh" "lee" "na". There are other lyrics being mumbled under the Latin reggaetón drum beat, but they are wholly inconsequential.


My all-time favorite group is Pink Floyd. Anyone who has listened to their complete catalog of music has experienced a dynamic range of sound. But their most popular albums Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, Animals, and The Wall more or less evolved into a formula centered on Roger Water's themes. So much so, that Roger Waters went his separate way since he didn't need the rest of the group to continue his music. Meanwhile, the remaining members spit out two more albums where they did their best to infuse the themes of their best albums with an updated sound to bump up their pension funds. I still like their post Roger Waters albums (as well as Roger's and Dave's solo work), but how much does that say when I am the type of person who likes Lady Ga-Ga's Poker Face?

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sheesh.... and people think I'M cynical. Oy.


Ok, let's look at how many people have ever lived since the creation of music (and that arguably predates language itself). Now let's consider studies that have shown that the human brain is wired for music.


Now put them together and what you have is, on the one hand, a predilection for general musical structure (musical grammar, if you will), and on the other hand, enough people to exhaust all possibilities 1000 times over and then some.


Now factor in technology that influences and even shapes what music can be created (you can do things with a guitar that you can't do without stringed instruments, or when you add in synths and effects, or even just plain old basic amps and microphones - ie, you can't have Front Line Assembly or The Crystal Method without modern electronic instruments, and you aren't likely to want to compose a sonata when you can get a wicked crunch from a power cord with an electric guitar, a killer amp, and some distortion).


There is no mass conspiracy that waters down everything to suckle the public and keep them dull. People like what they like and pay for it. Buisnesses are the ONLY way to distribute an artist's work in the pre-internet era, and by definition early on the most well liked or likable stuff would be promoted. But even in that case you still had blues, jazz, rock-a-billy, country and big-band/swing all being produced and supported at the same time. They were trying to cater to as much of the potential market as possible by offering as much choice as possible.


Now with self-publishing, more and more aritsts and their quirky compositions can reach larger audiences. And yet, despite that, it hasn't made instant sensations out of anyone. Nor has it totally changed the landscape of what is created, distributed, or played. It hasn't killed radio stations, it hasn't even created "new" formats. And you'd better believe that if money could be increased by such a transformation, it would happen. Likewise, existing radio stations would be forced to change formats or die... it hasn't happened.


That's because it won't happen.


That's because the public taste is always going to be more or less the same, but changing with eras in the craving for something different. And the major types will never die (rock, country, dance, etc).


Which of course brings up another point, for something to be part of a genre, it has to conform to it (to some extent, and remember, the category is applied AFTER the music is created, the music is not the other way around - and if you doubt it, then just look at Talyor Swift and Lady Antebellum getting lots of airplay on DANCE and pop stations. Not all their stuff, just the stuff that fits the format because the artist crossed genres.).


That comedy bit does not make some cynical statement about the lack of originality in music or about the horrors of corporations, it highlights the nature of music and out relationship to it. And also demonstrates just what can be done with only a few chords.



For another example, I give you language - we have 26 letters. I *might* not even have used all of them in this post (probably did, but I'm not going to study it to find out. lol) :wink:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

That was so damn funny!


Even in the underground you can find the same thing. The pioneers lay out the riffs and after a few years you can swear that you hear the same chords, progressions, and scales used by at least half the bands putting material out. It repeats itself every few years as newer genres and sub-genres spawn.


I used to tick off a guitarist i was in a band with by listening to his riffs and telling him exactly what band, album, and song used what he was coming up with.


Perhaps that's why we end up with bands that are so technical that you wonder "Forget about playing it, how the hell did they think of it"

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  


Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..