For a person who was not yet born when music was initially released, is it possible to enjoy it with the same level of enthusiasm as contemporary music?

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Poll Closing Date: Thursday, 1 September 2022 00:00 (in 2 weeks)

"we says yes."

Yes.
No.


"Why is the voice of reason treated as the unreliable narrator?", asked (Austin), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 03:23 (one month ago) link

loaded question, I think you could argue both

I think we naturally divide stuff in our heads by whether or not we remember a time without it. and if you don't remember then you can fill in the blanks. like I think a lot about the prog era and how cool it would've been to see ELP or Yes in a fucking stadium playing utterly insane shit but I bet a lot of the people who actually remember it would think "nah, it was kinda lame actually"

otoh listening to an album for the first time is really fun if it's something great. nothing else really matches that excitement. even like, hearing Beatles records for the first time

frogbs, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 03:32 (one month ago) link

How do you know when it was released?

saer, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 04:07 (one month ago) link

I don’t think it’s possible to capture the particular quality of loving something that just came out; there’s a cultural dimension to it that intensifies the appreciation in a certain way.

But it’s also not really “fair” to compare it discovering & falling in love with older stuff, which can obviously be a deep kind of love as well.

(Which kind of love is more likely to be “enduring” is an interesting question – you may be more likely to have a “nostalgia factor” for something whose cultural moment coincided with your own youth? Idk)

“Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 04:20 (one month ago) link

Yeah, sort of. The thing that's exciting about a current artist is the zealous anticipation that results from not knowing the trajectory they're going to take yet. Potentially, there's more and better and different kinds of music to come and if it's a very new artist, then probably they haven't set a steady course yet. Everything is still undecided. So maybe you take a more active role in completing the work for yourself.

With stuff that came out before you were born all that is immutable and unchangeable, you already know what happens next, even if you have to dig around a little to see how it happens. You can get totally wrapped up in it, if it's just a question of degree. But it's more like being an archaeologist than a dreamer.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 04:44 (one month ago) link

there’s a cultural dimension to it that intensifies the appreciation in a certain way.

New music is always "in conversation" with old music. How it's going to respond, or to what, remains an open question i guess.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 05:05 (one month ago) link

How do you know if is new or old when you first hear it?

saer, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 06:59 (one month ago) link

I'm listening to the Great Santa Barbara Oil Slick and my answer is yes.
I believe that music travels through emotional routes, not through time. As long as the recording is intact and you have the musical baggage to make the emotional connection, there's no inevitable "fade" in the power of the music. And I also believe you don't need a PhD in American blues and folk history to fully appreciate John Fahey.
It was released posthumously too. Obviously if you were there you have additional memories and associations. You remember the times, the context, which is also important but more general, we all have different lives.
I'm also thinking of that Orchestre Massako reissue by Analog Africa that I heard yesterday, where it's already a small miracle that this music reaches us. That's also a special feeling, a special privilege.

Nabozo, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 07:50 (one month ago) link

i like Bach but am i really feeling him i ask myself

bury my heart in wounded kieth (Noodle Vague), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 07:53 (one month ago) link

(John Fahey blows his nose)

Nabozo, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 07:58 (one month ago) link

i like Bach but am i really feeling him i ask myself


You gotta be Lutheran to really get him, man

Antifa Sandwich Artist (Boring, Maryland), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 13:52 (one month ago) link

so yeah— this is kind of meant as a semi-jokey poll, definitely inspired by the retro hit status of "running up that hill." my love of catalogue music is firm and i truly believe that time doesn't apply when appreciating any music, but also i've seen some sentiments (not here) that a 13 year old in 2022 isn't able to appreciate kate bush on the same level that someone who bought hounds of love in 1985 did. that's obviously completely false and dumb to me.

my main thing is: even from a purely capitalistic point of view, think of all the work that's already been completed with songs like "running up that hill"; all they had to do was get people to hear it. labels and publishing and all those folks are cashing tf in nearly 40 years later.

instead of treating the reissue game like a special interest, i think it would be amazing to hear how the rarely heard or unheard music of previous generations continues to be relevant. and again: maybe remaster the recordings, but other than that, how many other huge hits are just waiting to be discovered? how is this not the new model?

idk if you were into Kate Bush as say a 13 year old in 1979 and watched her get better and better then yeah I imagine going out and buying Hounds of Love on its release day is probably more exciting than what a teenager discovering it through Stranger Things is feeling now

frogbs, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:22 (one month ago) link

definitely respect that vibe, frogs. but hard disagree all the same.

The age of a piece of music is completely irrelevant to me; all that matters is its visceral impact. If it hits me the first time I hear it, I will keep listening, and discover more and more about it — or not! Perhaps it will always be just as pleasurable, on the same superficial, instant-gratification level as the first time. Every time I listen to Aerosmith's Rocks, it just...rocks, period. I don't need to analyze it, I just put it on and...fuck yes, this music rules. If, on the other hand, something doesn't work for me, I don't think about whether it's a brand new artist, still dripping from the vat where the music industry grows them, and tell myself that it's too early to tell whether they'll develop into something marvelous...I just go listen to something that I actually like. I think part of this is connected to my near-total disconnection from any "social context" for music. I don't go to live shows anymore; I never did go out to dance; I don't listen to music with other people in the room at all, really. So being part of some broader "fan community" or whatever is an utterly foreign and frankly unwelcome concept to me.

There is no "new" music or "old" music; there is only music I haven't heard yet. And there's no such thing as "relevance." It's as bogus a concept as "authenticity."

but also fuck you (unperson), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:35 (one month ago) link

idk if you were into Kate Bush as say a 13 year old in 1979 and watched her get better and better then yeah I imagine going out and buying Hounds of Love on its release day is probably more exciting than what a teenager discovering it through Stranger Things is feeling now

― frogbs

or maybe you're listening to it and thinking "what the fuck is this shit?"

it's easier for me to _understand_ old music, most of what i listen to is old music, '70s music particularly, because i'm familiar with the cultural context it's coming from. the shock of the new is mitigated.

i was three in 1979, but there's a band called radiohead that is pretty popular with the kids today. i did follow their career, heard _kid a_ as while it was coming out, and it was exciting, sure, exciting to hear the bootlegs of the new songs, to hear the studio songs leak out song by song, the speculation of what songs would be on the albums, and ultimately to take it all in as a whole, as a creative breakthrough, and i still believe it was a creative breakthrough, by a band who were already operating at a pretty high level, whose last album was widely loved. is someone who's 24 _now_ going to have that experience with the album? no, it came out when they were two. does that mean they don't _appreciate_ the album more than i do? honestly, i wouldn't say that, honestly, there are probably a lot of 24 year olds who _appreciate_ that album a good deal more than i do now. the bloom is off the rose. it's a nice album and all, but i'm in a different place now.

in 1997, though, the album i loved most in '97 wasn't ok computer, but was robert wyatt's _shleep_. and this is an album that i've been listening to for a quarter century now, living with for a quarter century, and my love and appreciation of the album has deepened. more than that it's become part of the fabric of my life. it means something to me, something it couldn't possibly have meant to me in 1997. i'm six years younger, now, than wyatt was when he released that album; what once seemed an expression of wisdom and age is now... contemporary to my life.

enthusiasm? i've heard so much music that there are few records i hear today that i hear with the same enthusiasm as i did when i was 24, when i was 34, even. love? yes. ever more love. more love than i can bear, some days.

Kate (rushomancy), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:37 (one month ago) link

I'm going to say no. A few years back I used to visit London every weekend or so. I remember being totally stoked for the new Hunger Games film, because everywhere in London there were posters of Jennifer Lawrence surrounded by flames. The campaign for the last two films merged into one very long poster campaign. The thing is that I haven't seen any of the Hunger Games films, and I have no desire to, but the posters constantly reinforced the fact that they were "a thing" and I developed an emotional attachment to them. Now when I visit London the place feels empty and strange, because the posters are gone.

I remember feeling the same when I visited Kyiv a few years ago. The metro didn't have adverts for BMW or Sephiroth or Patek Philipe etc. Not like in London. It just had adverts for local garages and mobile phone companies. And one solitary poster for A Star is Born. I remember standing near that poster because it made me feel warm, because it was real.

Along similar lines I gave up on video games throughout most of the 2000s and early 2010s. I was too busy. I've had time of late to go back and see what I missed, but without the attendant publicity and the social aspect the process has a coldness to it. On the positive side I can evaluate the likes of XCOM: Enemy Unknown and Mirror's Edge and The Last Guardian etc without being influenced by the hype, but on the other hand the discussion boards are now wastelands, and who do I share my findings with? Ditto the rebooted Battlestar Galactica, which is one of the few sci-fi franchises to have had a Wiki that went defunct. Who do I share it with? To which the answer is that online discourse is an illusion, and even if I was writing about BSG when it was new I wouldn't be sharing anything with anybody because we are all islands.

And so it is with pop music. Once you strip away the social aspect and the direct emotional connection to the marketing blitz it gets easier to sift through the house of cards and sort the wheat from the chaff - checkmate! - but at the same time there's a coldness to it. But in the long run all franchises die, and so will pop music, so ultimately it's all coldness. The warmth is a short blip at the beginning.

Ashley Pomeroy, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:43 (one month ago) link

idk if you were into Kate Bush as say a 13 year old in 1979 and watched her get better and better then yeah I imagine going out and buying Hounds of Love on its release day is probably more exciting than what a teenager discovering it through Stranger Things is feeling now

― frogbs, Wednesday, July 13, 2022 3:22 PM (seventeen minutes ago) bookmarkflaglink

I agree with this. Since
A) You can't unmoor something from its time and
B) No one is more enthusiastic about music than teenagers

Whiney G. Weingarten, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:44 (one month ago) link

I happened to hear Hounds of Love the week it came out 'cuz it was played on the local college stations experimental music show all the way through. And I didn't really know who she was, but I loved the record and went out and bought it. But her profile was such in America in the mid-80s that it was exactly the sort of album that took years to catch on. There wasn't really anyone else to talk about the record with. Mummer, Zen Arcade, Let It Be, Rain Dogs - all these were records that were well beloved three years after their release, but it took time for them to catch on. I guess mostly in the Walkmans of loner kids, so the show gets that aspect down.

Jaqueline Kasabian Oasis (bendy), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:44 (one month ago) link

the direct emotional connection to the marketing blitz

a superficial sheeb of intelligence (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:48 (one month ago) link

Who has more "enthusiasm" for the Beatles: A teenage girl in 1964 screaming until she's blue in the face and passes out or a smug, self-satisfied 2022 Holden Caulfield nerd who posts "born in the wrong era" image macros on 4chan. Who can say?

Whiney G. Weingarten, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:51 (one month ago) link

(caveat that this is impossible to answer without a recognized test for levels of enthusiasm)
I certainly wouldn't put down any person (young or old) who claimed to love old music they had recently discovered. At the same time, I can't understand how someone can ignore the differences between someone who saw and loved the Beatles on Ed Sullivan (and their social and historical position), and the experiences with that music of anyone born since 1970 or so. The love of the original listeners is not better or truer, but it has a different quality to subsequent audiences.
It may also be sad for some to consider that it isn't enough to be alive at the time that music is released to appreciate it. I don't consider myself closed-minded, but at 50, there's a good chance I'd be as non-plussed by a revolutionary change in pop music as the average "music lover" born in 1914 was by the Beatles.
My fondest recollection of "Running Up That Hill" at the time was how it was played on the video chart countdown show, successful, but at the same time just treated as another song among many.

Halfway there but for you, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:53 (one month ago) link

I wanted to optimistically say that life can open up and give you the opportunity to really get into new music and it just clicks, but at heart, I think Whiney is right: the emotional attachment you get to specific things as a teenager is a powerful thing

I think the attachment you can get as a teenager to older music is stronger but it's such a different experience. If it's something that was huge in its time, like the couple kids I knew in high school or middle school who "discovered" Led Zeppelin or whatever (lol) then there's this sense of validation. If it's something that was fringe, or popular but not in rotation on whatever regurgitates some zeitgeist, be it radio or some spotify playlist or algorithm, it's like some secret knowledge and you get the teen tendency to assign all this importance and see things through rose-colored glasses.

mh, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 19:57 (one month ago) link

I will likely never experience an enthusiasm of the level I had for "U Can't Touch This" at age 10 or Pork Soda when I was 13 and I can't imagine any kid of today feeling the same way about MC Hammer and Primus

Whiney G. Weingarten, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:01 (one month ago) link

he hit us, so hard

mh, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:03 (one month ago) link

But kudos on making another thread where unperson can tell us how he's Not Like Other People

Whiney G. Weingarten, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:06 (one month ago) link

I read it as another thread where ILM can remind itself that pop music is the only music that exists.

but also fuck you (unperson), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:12 (one month ago) link

The age of a piece of music is completely irrelevant to me; all that matters is its visceral impact. If it hits me the first time I hear it, I will keep listening, and discover more and more about it — or not! Perhaps it will always be just as pleasurable, on the same superficial, instant-gratification level as the first time. Every time I listen to Aerosmith's Rocks, it just...rocks, period. I don't need to analyze it, I just put it on and...fuck yes, this music rules. If, on the other hand, something doesn't work for me, I don't think about whether it's a brand new artist, still dripping from the vat where the music industry grows them, and tell myself that it's too early to tell whether they'll develop into something marvelous...I just go listen to something that I actually like. I think part of this is connected to my near-total disconnection from any "social context" for music. I don't go to live shows anymore; I never did go out to dance; I don't listen to music with other people in the room at all, really. So being part of some broader "fan community" or whatever is an utterly foreign and frankly unwelcome concept to me.

Isn't that visceral impact still determined at least in part by the frame of reference you bring to the music, though, which is invariably shaped by the time periods we have lived through and in which we currently experience the music? Part of the reason Mary Halvorson is exciting to us surely has to do with recognizing what is new in the way she works with guitar sound, juxtaposing acoustic sounds with electronic delay/looping/pitch-shifting effects that she controls improvisationally in real time - and this is new because it has yet to be copied and we have listened to plenty of other guitarists who don't do that; and part of the reason has to do with recognizing what is already familiar in her sound, what we can connect to jazz and progressive rock and noise-rock artists we have already heard. It doesn't necessarily mean that you can't be enthusiastic about In a Silent Way or In the Court of the Crimson King, or that people won't love Mary Halvorson in 20 years, but there is something distinct about the experience that seems to depend on the age of the piece of music, I think.

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:20 (one month ago) link

i like Bach but am i really feeling him i ask myself

― bury my heart in wounded kieth (Noodle Vague), Wednesday, July 13, 2022 12:53 AM (twelve hours ago)

idk like, that Schubert piece that was in The Hunger, the scene with the flowing draperies, I still remember that from when I saw that movie as a teenager ... like, very formative in romantic Goth fantasies of my youth, but ... when that Schubert trio hit the charts back in the day, they totally had a different excitement over that piece plus Bowie + Deneuve ... idk

sarahell, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:21 (one month ago) link

Part of the reason Mary Halvorson is exciting to us surely has to do with recognizing what is new in the way she works with guitar sound, juxtaposing acoustic sounds with electronic delay/looping/pitch-shifting effects that she controls improvisationally in real time - and this is new because it has yet to be copied and we have listened to plenty of other guitarists who don't do that; and part of the reason has to do with recognizing what is already familiar in her sound, what we can connect to jazz and progressive rock and noise-rock artists we have already heard.

Maybe, but what does a wet-brained 13-year-old who doesn't know anything about anything think feel when they hear Mary Halvorson? That's what's really important!

but also fuck you (unperson), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:27 (one month ago) link

Yeah, sort of. The thing that's exciting about a current artist is the zealous anticipation that results from not knowing the trajectory they're going to take yet. Potentially, there's more and better and different kinds of music to come and if it's a very new artist, then probably they haven't set a steady course yet. Everything is still undecided. So maybe you take a more active role in completing the work for yourself.

With stuff that came out before you were born all that is immutable and unchangeable, you already know what happens next, even if you have to dig around a little to see how it happens. You can get totally wrapped up in it, if it's just a question of degree. But it's more like being an archaeologist than a dreamer.

― The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Wednesday, July 13, 2022 12:44 AM (fifteen hours ago) bookmarkflaglink

This is well put and archaeologist v. dreamer is great.

Am I doomposting? I would say you’re not doomposting enough. (PBKR), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:37 (one month ago) link

I mean, my favorite genre is metal, but I am only 41, so obviously, I was only in pre-school/kindergarten when a lot of the genre's defining albums came out. they excited the fuck out of me when I first listened to them, like Reign in Blood, Black Metal, Don't Break the Oath, etc, but I imagine having heard them in context, like being a pre-existing fan and hearing these on drop date would have been a transformative experience that I unfortunately didn't get to be a part of.

but it's what it is, y'know. It's not like I sit at the foot of my bed sobbing each night going "I WAS LATE TO KING'S LOVE, MAN"

I remember thinking how I was insanely late to albums and artists as a teenager, when these were things that came out... only a few years prior

me, getting into NIN's The Downward Spiral in 1996: omg, I am a poser

mh, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:48 (one month ago) link

unlike Radiohead, where I was a fan already when OK Computer came out, and I got to experience it as a new thing. which actually hurt the experience as the hype made it harder for me to enjoy at first.

Maybe, but what does a wet-brained 13-year-old who doesn't know anything about anything think feel when they hear Mary Halvorson? That's what's really important!

Haha yeah that whole teenager angle seems a bit tangential. The OP doesn't say anything about the age of the listener at the moment when they are exposed to the new or old music. There is a certain intensity of enthusiasm that comes with being young and naive (whether of the extroverted screaming-fan or the introverted 4chan-posting variety) but that doesn't necessarily have to be for contemporary music. I was more enthusiastic about Led Zeppelin and Lenny Breau at 13 than Mr Big or Paula Abdul. No doubt the experience was different for someone hearing Zep IV in 1971, though.

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:56 (one month ago) link

as a tail-end boomer (i turn 64 next month....gaaaahh) i'm gonna say...i lean toward "no"? in a zelig-like way i guess i experienced these things first hand: beatlemania (i was 5/6 in 1964 and can definitely understand all those "it changed my life" people), arena rock (my first concert was led zeppelin in '72) and punk (i went to college in nyc from 1976-1980). like, that was amazing, and i can't imagine any of those things being so visceral when experienced after the fact. but conversely having had these experiences it makes me bend over backwards to *not* let them color my experience of older and/or newer music to the point where it blinds me to great things that are happening currently. i mean, if there were great things happening currently. but there's always that echo chamber in my head. like when people are all over that big thief album -- and yeah i like some of that big thief album -- i'm thinking geez does their drummer sound amateurish to me *just* because i saw john bonham and keith moon? i also think music has to cut through much more cultural crap to be as great now as it was then, but that's a whole other thread.

Thus Sang Freud, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 20:59 (one month ago) link

beatlemania (i was 5/6 in 1964 and can definitely understand all those "it changed my life" people), arena rock (my first concert was led zeppelin in '72) and punk (i went to college in nyc from 1976-1980)

damn, lol! zelig-like for sure.

“Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 21:05 (one month ago) link

Maybe, but what does a wet-brained 13-year-old who doesn't know anything about anything think feel when they hear Mary Halvorson?

Avant-garde music was exciting to me when I was 13 years old precisely because it respected my intelligence enough to not dumb things down. Finally there was a voice in my life that wasn't talking down to me.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 22:10 (one month ago) link

I was a 13 year old chorister at Notre Dame when Perotin invented polyphony.

Antifa Sandwich Artist (Boring, Maryland), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 23:28 (one month ago) link

Who has more "enthusiasm" for the Beatles: A teenage girl in 1964 screaming until she's blue in the face and passes out or a smug, self-satisfied 2022 Holden Caulfield nerd who posts "born in the wrong era" image macros on 4chan. Who can say?

― Whiney G. Weingarten

so much selection bias! look whiney i do happen to run into 4chan-poisoned folks sometimes, and your comparison is right on in that a lot of them are teenaged girls, but they're all fucking trans girls and are less "enthusiastic" or "smug" than, like, about as consumed with self-loathing as you are. i apologize, i know it's rude of me to call you the way you constantly call out other board posters, but i'm so fucking sick of it, yeah we all fucking learned to hate ourselves, quit taking it out on other posters you have two-decade-old beefs with, do some trauma work or some shit.

austin's a good guy and his thread is worth engaging with genuinely. anyway, your canonical 4chan nerd is probably gonna be listening to, like, backxwash or one of those other suicidal transfem record albums and no matter how much they try to cover it up with irony their emotions regarding those records strike me as being pretty fucking real and genuine.

Kate (rushomancy), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 23:34 (one month ago) link

I was a 13 year old chorister at Notre Dame when Perotin invented polyphony.

― Antifa Sandwich Artist (Boring, Maryland)

perotin? that hack! totally stole all the credit from Anonymous 3.

Kate (rushomancy), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 23:35 (one month ago) link

my kids love “Macarena” more than I ever did. So sure.

Western® with Bacon Flavor, Wednesday, 13 July 2022 23:36 (one month ago) link

seems like a low bar

“Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 23:38 (one month ago) link

seems like a low bar

― “Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp)

that's limbo

Kate (rushomancy), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 23:40 (one month ago) link

There is a certain intensity of enthusiasm that comes with being young and naive (whether of the extroverted screaming-fan or the introverted 4chan-posting variety)

although tbh music critics can overrate this at times imo - teenagers can also often be anxious masses of self-consciousness who are easily pressured and influenced. Some percentage of those screaming Beatlemaniacs were probably screaming because their friends were or they thought they were supposed to. I don't know that my middle-aged enthusiasm for Mary Halvorson is lesser than my preteen enthusiasm for Aerosmith. 6xps

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Wednesday, 13 July 2022 23:46 (one month ago) link

Now I'm second-guessing my answer, as I remember all those young folks going ape at the Pavement reunion show a few months back.

(btw - I haven't been taking the "not yet born" part of the question literally - I just figured it meant, like, "at least a decade old" - but if that's really part of it, it might change things even a little more)

“Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp), Thursday, 14 July 2022 00:12 (one month ago) link

Yeah, it's not my experience that teens who are into Ed Sheeran are more enthusiastic than teens who are into Bach or Skynyrd.

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Thursday, 14 July 2022 00:21 (one month ago) link

Ask a 12yo music fan about Queen if you want to see enthusiasm.

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Thursday, 14 July 2022 00:23 (one month ago) link

I'm gonna take a risk here and project that about 98% of Ed Sheeran's biggest fans don't actually like music.

billstevejim, Thursday, 14 July 2022 00:34 (one month ago) link

When I was 12, Queen were just another Classic Rock Group trying to get video airplay.

Halfway there but for you, Thursday, 14 July 2022 00:37 (one month ago) link

*birth

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Saturday, 16 July 2022 15:16 (one month ago) link

And then that band become world famous and now it's hey I saw them in NY nobody knew who they were etc...

It was the Strokes? (my guess)

“Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp), Saturday, 16 July 2022 15:20 (one month ago) link

It wasn't anybody : I didn't go.

But, quite .

Mark G, Saturday, 16 July 2022 16:03 (one month ago) link

in all my years of going to shows, the only times i've had that experience its always been bands i hated. i would be a terrible A&R person.

nobody like my rap (One Eye Open), Saturday, 16 July 2022 16:17 (one month ago) link

There are musicians that as kids got obsessed with certain types of music and then made the leap to learning to play it that are often in styles long past their lives

not sure whether to focus on the "as kids" part or the "learning to play" part ... we kinda keep coming back to the aspect of youth in re enthusiasm. I feel like there are a fair number of musicians who came to be passionate about certain "older" styles as adults ... but is the level of enthusiasm the same?

sarahell, Saturday, 16 July 2022 16:19 (one month ago) link

xxp Ah sorry, I misread your post. I mean, sure, most CB’s bills were generic hardcore bands or whatever that would not leave an impression or become world famous…

“Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp), Saturday, 16 July 2022 16:44 (one month ago) link

Although there is something nice about a band having a big moment I really don't miss the buzz and hype because it inevitably started feeling a bit yucky, not in any kind of principled or ethical way, but just in the way of needing variety and to appreciate things in your own time. I think I can enjoy old music more in some ways because I can put it away when I want and perhaps the flavor feels enough of a contrast to be able to enjoy it more sometimes, but maybe that's just as true for most bands today. I guess it's not true for the Beatles because they're never away that long.

Maybe it always improves appreciation when it's your own choice when you want to engage with something.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 16 July 2022 18:21 (one month ago) link

1. Language acquisition seems to have an age of porousness. Most people learn their native language and one or two others during this period of porousness. It's possible to acquire a language in adulthood but it's rare.

2. Similarly, modern people seem to be EXTREMELY porous to music in their teens. For most people I know, the music they liked when they were aged approximately 12 to 18 has special status. Of course you can still evolve and learn, but it's tough to replicate that thrill. Note that for me it's more about what you liked when you were that age, not just what was released when you were that age.

In my preteen and teen years I liked my parents' records (Beatles, Beach Boys, Motown, folk, jazz, classical), then I liked 80s pop, then I liked "classic rock," then I liked 90s indie. My overarching belief was that it was all a gorgeous smorgasbord and everyone could partake according to their taste and wishes.

3. Music I play, music people like, and music that makes money are completely mon-overlapping circles in my world, and I am okay with that.

your marshmallows may vary (Ye Mad Puffin), Saturday, 16 July 2022 18:48 (one month ago) link

I think it was "This is Your Brain on Music" -- the book, that talked about this in terms of neuroscience. Pretty sure we discussed it at length when it came out, but I don't remember the thread, and I'm not saying this in a prescriptive way ... more like the opposite, "I don't even remember what thread it was, so it sounds like enough time has elapsed to revisit it."

sarahell, Saturday, 16 July 2022 19:25 (one month ago) link

1. Language acquisition seems to have an age of porousness. Most people learn their native language and one or two others during this period of porousness. It's possible to acquire a language in adulthood but it's rare.
― your marshmallows may vary (Ye Mad Puffin), Saturday, July 16, 2022 8:48 PM (one hour ago) bookmarkflaglink

I'd say that people don't learn languages in adulthood mainly because they don't need to, not because they have lost the ability.

Nabozo, Saturday, 16 July 2022 20:03 (one month ago) link

I'd say that people don't learn languages in adulthood mainly because they don't need to, not because they have lost the ability.

Speaking as someone who has studied multiple languages as an adult, it's really fucking hard to get anything to sink in, and the minute you stop practicing/using a language you're trying to acquire, your brain shits it right back out. I took a couple of years' worth of Japanese courses in college and remember none of it. I have spent nearly 30 years living in a town where Spanish is spoken basically everywhere, and I can...kinda order food? The last few years I've been learning Swedish and Norwegian, and I keep those in my head by following a bunch of Scandinavian people on Twitter and watching lots of Scandinavian TV shows on Netflix.

but also fuck you (unperson), Saturday, 16 July 2022 20:14 (one month ago) link

Of course, but learning Japanese or Norwegian for fun is different from changing countries, needing to learn a language for work, etc.

Nabozo, Saturday, 16 July 2022 20:32 (one month ago) link

I don't think feeling enthusiastic about a new piece of music is analogous to learning a new language tbf.

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Saturday, 16 July 2022 20:40 (one month ago) link

It's not a perfect analogy, no, I only mean that lots of people seem to have that "period of porousness."

If you don't - that is, if you keep acquiring new musical fascinations well past adolescence - it means that you may be an ilx0r and/or an outlier. Doesn't mean that the generalization doesn't contain a grain of truth for the 6-CD crowd.

your marshmallows may vary (Ye Mad Puffin), Saturday, 16 July 2022 21:12 (one month ago) link

I definitely think there is truth behind language acquisition porousness being harder as one ages -- I definitely see the difference in two of my good friends, both moved from Eastern Europe to America before adulthood. One moved when they were about 8 years old, and occasionally the accent of their home country comes out, but in general, their English sounds like someone born in America speaking English. The other moved to America as a teenager, and they have a much stronger native accent. Both came over with a parent or parents, frequently communicate with said parent or parents, and mostly in the language of the home country.

sarahell, Saturday, 16 July 2022 21:40 (one month ago) link

There's also the issue of "language ego" which I think is more individual and maybe genetic? ... and that also is a factor.

sarahell, Saturday, 16 July 2022 21:42 (one month ago) link

Music porousness is more about what psychologists call "openness", and that also decreases with age (but interestingly, psilocybin boosts your openness). This is why most people's taste and opinions cement as they get older.

Also, are we really debating whether language acquisition gets harder with age? Isn't that just commonly accepted? It does seem like a weird analogy for music enthusiasm though.

FWIW, I'm a firm "no" on the original question. If you can't go see the band live, anticipate new releases, react to latest news, etc, you're only getting a facimile of the full 360-degree experience. (and it sure helps to be 21 when it's all happening)

enochroot, Sunday, 17 July 2022 00:48 (four weeks ago) link

relevant meme interruption!

https://i.redd.it/cej4wltksxb91.jpg

have read the entire thread twice so far. this went way better than i anticipated. thanks for thoughts, everyone!

That meme would be funny with Kate Bush references (which I imagine exists)

“Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp), Sunday, 17 July 2022 02:33 (four weeks ago) link

I'm happy to see the research but rn not sure I agree that most people are especially open or porous regarding music as teenagers, at least in the sense of being open to and non-judgmental about diverse and challenging musical experiences. Lots of teenagers have very narrow palates. It DOES seem to be true that a lot of people feel the strongest attachment to music they liked as kids or adolescents but I put that down to nostalgia for the soundtrack of a formative and emotionally intense stage of life more than to a higher level of openness at that age.

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Sunday, 17 July 2022 02:46 (four weeks ago) link

Like, loving "Glycerine" more than you'll ever love any other music doesn't really say anything to me about openness.

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Sunday, 17 July 2022 02:48 (four weeks ago) link

I agree w/Sund4r

“Lawman,” Slick (Grunt) (morrisp), Sunday, 17 July 2022 02:54 (four weeks ago) link

I agree with Sund4r re it being more about attachment than "openness" but also, I think it is kinda related to the social aspect of music, especially for teenagers.

sarahell, Sunday, 17 July 2022 04:49 (four weeks ago) link

like when people are all over that big thief album -- and yeah i like some of that big thief album -- i'm thinking geez does their drummer sound amateurish to me *just* because i saw john bonham and keith moon?

When I got home the other day, my 67 y/o theater producer neighbor was blasting 'Spud Infinity'. This really surprised me. Mostly because I mistook it for 'Cantor de Mambo' at first.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Sunday, 17 July 2022 14:21 (four weeks ago) link

i mean he's cool but he's not that cool

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Sunday, 17 July 2022 14:25 (four weeks ago) link

How does he dance?

L.H.O.O.Q. Jones (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 17 July 2022 14:28 (four weeks ago) link

Under the supervision of a therapist, as far as i know.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Sunday, 17 July 2022 14:35 (four weeks ago) link

He defo has a dance/movement therapist who makes house calls.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Sunday, 17 July 2022 14:37 (four weeks ago) link

Actually it might be a "fun" physical therapist, that would make more sense

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Sunday, 17 July 2022 14:39 (four weeks ago) link

Music can be "new to you" at any age. Discovering Arthur Russell and classic disco during my 20s changed the way I hear music as much as discovering indie rock or Albert Ayler or Jacques Brel did in my teens. Discovering ILM during my 30s changed the way I listen too, and it's not even music. The "you" is never the same but that's ok. Teenage music obsession can pale in comparison with a 2-year-old's music obsession.

TWELVE Michelob stars?!? (seandalai), Sunday, 17 July 2022 17:53 (four weeks ago) link

Baby Shark to thread

Nabozo, Sunday, 17 July 2022 18:05 (four weeks ago) link

please, let's not

sarahell, Sunday, 17 July 2022 18:24 (four weeks ago) link

Arthur Russell kind of a exception that proves the rule

maf you one two (maffew12), Sunday, 17 July 2022 19:54 (four weeks ago) link

favorite song presently. unbelievably resonating.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nzz1RKrYIWs

annette poindexter + pieces of peace — "wayward dream" (1970)

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Thursday, 28 July 2022 05:42 (two weeks ago) link

first listen 7 Jul 2022 11:30am

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Thursday, 28 July 2022 05:45 (two weeks ago) link

Puzzled by how many ppl itt see following an artist's contemporary trajectory as this pure moment of unfiltered enthusiasm. For me it's always been just as much worrying about the possibility of them falling off, arguing with ppl who tell me they're shit and wondering deep down whether they have a point, feeling FOMO at something potentially more exciting happening elsewhere that I'm either unaware of or not smart enough to "get". These are all neurotic impulses I agree, not saying they're laudable, but they def get in the way for me when enjoying music as it gets released.

Music from the past, meanwhile, has none of these problems - the story's been told so I don't need to worry about future trajectories, whether they're overrated or underrated doesn't matter, all the cultural and sub-cultural wars have been fought so I don't need to worry about any of that crap.

Also of course a romanticized view of the past has many advantages over the real thing! All the messy stuff can be more easily tuned out, big Heroic Narratives can be built. This is problematic in and of itself and yeah nostalgia for an age that never existed can be poisonous, also profoundly irritating for pedants like myself and most ppl who post to this board, but if the question is "level of enthusiasm" it is absolutely potent as fuck.

Like going back to the red herring of the listener's age a 13 year old's love of The Clash circa 2001 ABSOLUTELY could go as deep and fanatical as for any contemporary artist, possibly more so, possibly in a very annoying fashion.

Daniel_Rf, Thursday, 28 July 2022 09:54 (two weeks ago) link

Great post ^

enochroot, Thursday, 28 July 2022 16:26 (two weeks ago) link

still yet to hear from anyone who was born before music was released

in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Thursday, 28 July 2022 16:32 (two weeks ago) link

Buddy Bolden to thread!

My Little Red Buchla (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 28 July 2022 16:34 (two weeks ago) link

a pedant writes: there was commercially released music a decade before Bolden's heyday, and always rumours that he even recorded some himself.

link.exposing.politically (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Thursday, 28 July 2022 17:35 (two weeks ago) link

or me it's always been just as much worrying about the possibility of them falling off

Indeed. Check out let's discuss New Order's 'Republic'

immodesty blaise (jimbeaux), Thursday, 28 July 2022 17:43 (two weeks ago) link

I am on record as a person who enjoys Mozart, even though I was too young to appreciate his dope-ass trax when they were first released.

your marshmallows may vary (Ye Mad Puffin), Thursday, 28 July 2022 17:49 (two weeks ago) link


all the cultural and sub-cultural wars have been fought so I don't need to worry about any of that crap.

Good point that I don't think anyone else has brought up. Like the way the squareness of the Monkees (as compared to, say, the Rolling Stones) flattens out after so many years. I think about that often. Ultimately I feel like old music just keeps attracting new cultural baggage all the time, and it evolves and changes but you can never really escape this.

I don't honestly know how anyone could seriously answer "no" to the literal question, as phrased in the OP. If one person exists who enjoys music made before their borth as much as contemporary music, the answer is "yes". Fun springboard for conversation, though.

Right but there's some fuzziness about the wording of the question vs. the intent of the question:

i've seen some sentiments (not here) that a 13 year old in 2022 isn't able to appreciate kate bush on the same level that someone who bought hounds of love in 1985 did.

Like, it honestly didn't occur to me that the thread premise might have anything to do with this initially (i know, duh). And it seems like what's at issue here might be ownership rather than enthusiasm, in which case the correct answer is def still "yes". It's like telling someone who just moved to Corona that Flushing Meadows Park doesn't truly belong to you because you missed the '64 Worlds' Fair, or something. Like, you still get to say "This is where I live" or even "This is part of what defines who I am", you inhabit that space. Those structures weren't designed to become monuments, you know, they were meant to be used briefly and then demolished or forgotten, but they're still there & part of your immediate landscape, of course they belong to you.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Thursday, 28 July 2022 22:52 (two weeks ago) link

that's a good point ... also, it brings up the issue of the contextual changes that history could produce. Like, ok, fuck it, it's Leo season, I will refer y'all back to my very clever post about Schubert's use in The Hunger, where someone hearing that Schubert piece when it was "initially released" was not going to associate it with sexy goth vampire movie, The Hunger. Like, the nature of the "thing" that one has ownership of (in terms of identity formation) is different, just as Flushing Meadow Park has become a different "thing" over time.

sarahell, Saturday, 30 July 2022 06:23 (two weeks ago) link

To me the answer is a resounding yes: one can enjoy *music* as deeply--and probably more broadly--post-facto, as anyone did at the time of its release. What one probably can't enjoy to the same degree as those who "were there," is the cultural, temporal, and geographical context of said music. Whether those things are crucial to an enjoymebt (or "understanding") of music, or auxiliary, is up for debate.

But I feel, as someone born in 1980 who owns several thousand albums released before I was born, that part of what is so wonderful about music is that it can speak to you even if it's creation is wholly removed from your time and place. The emotions, the feeling, the sounds themselves can hit you, transcending time and place. This fact can get misunderstood and misshapen into appropriation, denial of origination and innovation, etc. But it can also lead to continuity and evolution within w living culture; and meaningful communication between cultures and across time.

Plenty of music from the past (and/or from places I haven't lived) has inspired me to learn more about its creators, and their context. But I view that as a meaningful but secondary facet of enjoyment of music to body/heart/mind engagement with the sounds of the music itself.

That said, "enjoyment of" and true "knowledge of" may be separate things. The fact that I can engage (even in great quantity and depth) music from times/cultures other than my own in personally meaningful ways, and even recommend/advocate others to do the same, doesn't mean I then necessarily have anything real to *say about* said music, particularly in terms of its cultural significance, the motivations or intentions of its creators, etc. It's a big reason my listening lead me to making many mixes, and increasingly to wanting to just let the music therein speak for itself; and away from any semblance of being a critic or a music author. Even in saying nothing, there is a risk of making sonic connections between music from my removed vantage point that might not appeal to its creators. The act of making a mix, I sometimes fear, implies "authority," rather than just the "deep enjoyment" that I feel motivates me.

The perspective of time (especially in the internet era and reissue/post-blog era) probably affords us a breadth of knowledge few to none would have at the time and place of a musical movement. For example, it's hugely unlikely I would've known the hundreds of artists and records I was able to hunt down for the '1981' poat-punk box set (not before I was born, bit I was in diapers in that year) if I'd been the right age to be culturally engaged in some local variant of the post-punk scene in 1981. My enthusiasm in the early 2000s for this music of the late 70s/early 80s was off-the-charts obsessive, and must've been evident and disarming to those I encountered who had "been there," as I got very few "what does this baby think he's doing plumbing the depths of *my* music".

(Conversely, I was so enthusiastic about that music "before my time" because I was so acutely disappointed by and disconnected from the music of my "time and place" in the early 2000s, to which I refused to be obligated to listen or pretend had any importance to me. I was very anti-time-and-place for a decade or so, feeling the opposite of the excitement older friends described about the musical (sub)culture of their youth.)

So in short--I don't see how there can be any doubt we can match the enthusiasm for music out-of-time of those who were there; and if anything, we can probably get more breadth-and-deoth obsessive. But that comes with a lot of caveats about how separable or not music-qua-music is from "the lived-and-breathed cultural, historical, and personal context of its creation". And I think there's probably something real--and potentially essential--that a time/place outsider can never experience or know about "non-first-hand" music, and therefore probably a certain humility we have to have in whwt we say about said music, a deference to rhose who were there and especially those who made the music. But music ultimately is transcendent, and there's nothing walling it off in time and space, when approached it with open ears in good faith.

(Please pardon any typos or lack of pith in this post, written in a time and place of insomnia on a phone.)

Soundslike, Saturday, 30 July 2022 08:35 (two weeks ago) link

Great post Soundslike.

Gavin, Leeds, Saturday, 30 July 2022 09:38 (two weeks ago) link

It's not often I get to experience music oblivious to when it came from but first time I heard Silver Apples "Oscillations", I assumed they were an 00s retro band and was pretty stunned to learn they were from the 60s.

I've been thinking about how people said so many old bands legacies are solidified despite many of them still being active. They can still destroy their image like Rolf Harris, their level of popularity is never settled, new associations can happen but it seems like their music is unlikely to evolve, innovate or have the same impact again, with few exceptions?

I was surprised recently to see someone get upset about the popularity of a current C-list rock band because I can't imagine why it seems that consequential to anyone now.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 30 July 2022 12:35 (two weeks ago) link

Please pardon any typos

“poat-punk” is unforgivable

HIPPO violation (morrisp), Saturday, 30 July 2022 16:08 (two weeks ago) link

Lol

My Little Red Buchla (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 30 July 2022 16:20 (two weeks ago) link

I've been thinking about how people said so many old bands legacies are solidified despite many of them still being active. They can still destroy their image like Rolf Harris, their level of popularity is never settled, new associations can happen but it seems like their music is unlikely to evolve, innovate or have the same impact again, with few exceptions?

― Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, July 30, 2022 5:35 AM

tangentially related? Instances where you can't separate the art from the artist. vs. instances where you can.

also yes re:silver apples. that stuff rules.

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Saturday, 30 July 2022 16:31 (two weeks ago) link


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