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Generic Music

Discussion in 'Other' started by Jason76, Dec 21, 2015.

  1. Jason76 Cat Moderator

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    What makes generic music? Should people dislike generic music? How does generic music become popular and promoted by mainstream media? My nephew said "80s hair band music" was one example of it, songs like "mmm Skinny Bop" etc..

    Of course, we need to distinguish between overplayed music, like say James Taylor, and actual generic music. Of course, my nephew hates James Taylor, mainly cause he worked at a drugstore where they played his stuff on heavy rotation every hour.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2015
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  2. jimbob Cat Moderator

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    I can't recall the term "generic music" but I understand what you are saying.

    That is likely a result of production wanting to maximize on a style/trend that is making money. And really, for them, if it makes money then they should be producing more of it. Eventually everything sounds pretty much the same.

    Of course, this restricts the artist in their creativity. Most producers won't produce their music if they think it won't make money.

    And yes, over-playing James Taylor would get boring very quickly.
     
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  3. ipol12 Molecule

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    For me, generic music is when songs were created in the same formula. At the current scene of mainstream music, pop and dance music is very common. We heard a lot of dance or EDM in the recent years, which until now they are still popular, it's like the sound are very much the same. When Rihanna released her EDM songs, it sounds generic as I can hear it like too formulaic.
     
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  4. Jason76 Cat Moderator

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    I don't think today's music is necesarily generic. I just don't like it. The way it's sung, played. I don't like the style. There is definitely a generation gap between me, being around 40, and the younger generation.
     
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  5. jimbob Cat Moderator

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    Yeah, there's a gap between you and me too. Hehehe.
     
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  6. ipol12 Molecule

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    It probably has something to do with a certain genre which its demographic covers a certain group or fanbase. Some artists has target audiences which that fanbase are more likely to purchase records. That's the case as the general public prefers a certain type of mysic, many artists follow suit and that makes the kind of music generic.
     
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  7. Jason76 Cat Moderator

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    People are free to listen to what they want. I just can't understand why they want to listen to it.
     
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  8. ipol12 Molecule

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    It may be our preferences differs from the others. In other aspect, people listen to what they often hear. That's why there are what we call "trends", because some people join the bandwagon when a song is very popular even creating their own videos of the sonhs and post it on YouTube. I have varying taste in music and I can listen to different kinds of songs. There are songs that I don't like, but I respect other people who likes the songs.
     
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  9. Quality Checked Bird Moderator

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    When you say "generic music" are you talking about music played as wall paper, or music written to a minimum common standard?

    Muzak is my idea of generic music. Muzak Corporation takes a selection of songs, arranges them to fit into one of several slots (calming, energizing, speed-up, etc.) and then live musicians perform the arrangements. It's what you hear in many settings. The sound you hear in many places isn't played off the air, and it isn't compilations that staff put together (though that is the case, fairly often). Muzak supplies a feed (used to be a large tape) and it plays all day in restaurants, retail, offices, elevators, etc.

    The tunes are recognizable, the arrangements are usually fairly "lush", and aspects which are contrary to the purpose of the given selection are removed. Sometimes it's fairy easy to make Muzak out of music. Take James Taylor "You've Got a Friend". The tempo is already fairly slow, the instrumental parts are not lush, but they are fairly soft. The guitar parts might be retained, or might be arranged for violin. The vocal element might be retained (performed by someone else, of course, possibly a vocal ensemble) but would more likely be played instrumentally. On the other hand, Adele's "Rolling in the Deep" just wouldn't work for the dark oak high end restaurant crowd. But it would be fine for some other settings. The very strong beat would probably be muted a bit, the vocal line would be toned down, the percussion softened. It would be good for an upbeat interval during the office day.

    Muzak arrangements are pretty predictable, but you might be surprised that some of it isn't very "kind". Quite often the music you hear in restaurants is kind of irritating. It isn't so much a matter of you liking or not liking the songs. The arrangements are designed to nettle the ears so you will eat faster to escape. The quicker you eat and leave, the sooner another group can sit at your table and produce revenue. Bars, on the other hand, want you to stay and drink. Loud music (certain content, of course) encourages drinking (partly by discouraging revenue-robbing conversation and socializing).

    That's how I would define "generic music" -- music repurposed for standardized social effect.

    btw, Eric Satie (French composer, 1866-1925) wrote some music that was intended to be wallpaper from the get go Here's a sample. It works quite well as background sound wallpaper, as intended. It doesn't really "go anywhere".

     
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  10. jimbob Cat Moderator

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    Right now I am listening to some old Guess Who music. Ain't nothing generic about this stuff.
     
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  11. Shine_Spirit Bacteria

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    I think this type of music is built through everything that is futile and atificial, which adds nothing good to our minds.

    I know that music isn't just culture, but entertainment... The question is: Why this entertainment can't be intelligent entertainment? Why what is most evident - most of the time - always is something irrelevant? :-?

    The music scene is so vast, it has room for everyone... But why is this kind of music just the one that gets the most attention? I really don't get this! [-X

    I don't say that it's necessary to avoid (because this is not possible because this type of music is everywhere :rolleyes:)... But the importance to this type of music should be much smaller.
     
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  12. Alexandoy Bacteria

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    If you mean by generic music is the music outside the mainstream then I guess that is what we call Indie music. They are songs produced by individuals or small companies that couldn't afford lavish promotions like those songs produced by big studios for popular singers. Indie music is similar to Indie films with small budgets for production hence they feature unknown actors. But in movies, the popularity of the cast is a big factor that's why Indie films always fail to get a good showing in the box office without a named actor. In Indie music, it is the same problem.

    Musical albums produced by big companies featuring established singers like James Taylor as an example will definitely fare better in the record stores. The big producers even spend for the exposure on radio stations. As for Indie music, I don't know if they can make a breakthrough in the market.
     
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