I was watching the channel “Palladia” the other day, and it is quickly becoming my favorite station. They show old and new concerts pretty much all day, each one in high definition. It’s like stepping back in time to watch some of the greats. I’m talking Led Zeppelin, The Who, Pink Floyd, all of those rock and roll legends. Afterward, they showed footage from some modern concerts, and I must say, something struck me. When did computers start playing music?
Now I know I had a very similar post go up just a few days ago, but I feel like it’s something worth talking about. I’m sure I must not be the first person to notice this. How could we not? Most popular modern artists today have their music generated electronically rather than with instruments. There are even some who don’t really sing, but only appear to sing through the use of auto-tuning.
Does this mean that modern artists are less talented? Of course not. Many artists are excellent singers, songwriters and dancers. But think about this: how many modern mainstream artists can you name who can rip off a good guitar solo? Granted, there are still old bands out there with guys who could always do that, like Metallica and The Rolling Stones. But I’m not talking about them. I’m talking 21st century century bands. Do any modern guitarists from those bands measure up to their 20th century counterparts? The truth is, they do not.
So what’s become of popular artists playing real instruments? It may be that music itself has changed. Rock was certainly always a spectacle. Shows were just as much about the onstage antics as they were about the music. But today, it’s a different sort of show. Today it seems like the music takes a backseat to the performance. We have choreographed dancing to go with the singing, and crazy costumes to boot. Of course, we had that before, but never to the same degree.
I realize I must sound like a crotchety old man right now, but gosh darrnit, kids these days just don’t know good music when they hear it!