entertainment

As streaming booms, songs getting faster: study

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© 2017 AFP


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17 Comments
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Starship? How about "I want my mtv"? Or "You spin me"? Those have got some serious intros! Or even "The Wall"!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

We have allowed corporate thinking to subvert and ruin music. Music is a product. And not a valued one. It is like deodorant, soda, shampoo, snacks. Something to consume. Background noise. Air filler.

Songs are fleeting, unoriginal, commercially planned instead of creatively. Watching a top 20 last week most top hits were using the same bangra beat sped up, slowed down, adjusted. The latest trendy dance sound.

Originality is gone.

There is a reason that so much of the classic music of the past still resonates today. Why it still sells, why these songs are covered by the millions of artists out there who are not competing in the corporate noise industry. These songs appeal to human beings with emotion, meaning, originality and unique character.

Since 2005 there have been so few releases that I can say I will still be listening to in 10 years. Most of it is throw away, well planned jingles that sound great today, dated tomorrow and have not relationship with providing a meaningful emotional soundtrack to our lives.

Streaming services are killing creativity in favor of practicality in music. As a musician and composer I have no interest in crafting my art to fit a corporate paradigm. So I have zero chance at fame. But so do many other artists I know. So we play directly to people around us and in communities who don't want junk music. We will never be wealthy from our art, but we will be remembered by those we touch with it.

That is far better. To hell with streaming services and their artist assassinating policies and trends.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Live music is best!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Look at movies, they don't even show credits at the start anymore, there are several marvel movies that even have the title of the movie at the end. Nothing to do with music and more about the people listening to it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

One benefit of shorter instrumental intros? AM DJs have less time to talk over the music.

DJs on one unnamed station in an unnamed 'safety' country talk when the singers are not singing. I mean, they talk during the instrumental intros, the instrumental solos, and the instrumental ending. How to ruin music in one easy step.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Why it still sells, why these songs are covered by the millions of artists out there

Covering should be verboten. Make your own music, be creative.

Streaming services are killing creativity in favor of practicality in music.

Before I get into this comment, could you elaborate? Isn't a streaming service similar to radio just that you can listen to music anytime anywhere? So your comment might hold some water but can also be said for radio, which nowadays just keeps repeating the same 20 terrible commercial tracks 100 times a day.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Covering should be verboten. Make your own music, be creative.

Some covers have been amazing. Johnny Cash 'Hurt' is one that comes to mind.

And as a musician, while I primarily play my own music, sometimes I love to do an interpretation of other people's.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

And as a musician, while I primarily play my own music, sometimes I love to do an interpretation of other people's.

Do you make money of it? Then thats ok. I hate it when an idol, boyband or some rapper destroys a classic and gets paid for it. Sure, they got the rights but its just riding the wave of the creator.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Do you make money of it?

I think someone bought me a beer once :)

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Any chance of getting SPOTIFY In Japan???

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Any chance of getting SPOTIFY In Japan???

Spotify and Apple Music are both available here already. Spotify more recently.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Music charts full of poor/simplistic music compared to the past predates streaming, so I don't think you can easily claim this causation.

I think there is more blame with all those singer talent shows like Pop Idol for narrowing the boundaries of what pop music is, when pop is taken to mean meanstream. Regarding the delivery mechanism for music, we always had "radio friendly music" in the past, some of it was even mixed to sound good on the limited frequencies you get out of an AM radio, but it never took over until the hype and melodrama that came with the talent shows. If a song is merely a vehicle for a Pop Idol winner, listeners aren't going to wait for a minute while some no-name studio musicians play an intro.

You can get Spotify in Japan now, btw.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"...A new study finds that pop songs themselves are getting faster as listeners’ attention spans diminish."

Well, if that's the case then people in the '50s to the '70s had no attention spans at all, given that songs were one or two minutes shorter in total, with MANY having no instrumental introduction before the singing started. Which is to say, a lame argument all around, and one that once again blames modern tech on what the elderly and quick to forget see as "dwindling attention spans".

Same old argument.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

“In 1986, it took roughly 23 seconds before the voice began on the average hit song. In 2015, vocals came in after about five seconds, a drop of 78%, he found. It makes sense that if the environment is so competitive, artists would want to try to grab your attention as quickly as possible,” he told AFP.

This is actually very sad. Long instrumental openings are imo very much attention-grabbing...when they are good. And they probably are the reason we remember some songs and not others. Would Smashing Pumpkins 'tonight, tonight" or even '1979' be cult songs without their fairly long openers? How about Guns' "November rain"?!

I still think, and hope, the younger generation can appreciate long instrumental openers provided they are quality. Being different still sells.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

goldorak: You're right about the songs you mention, but those are examples of cult songs or smash hits (with the Roses) and are not necessarily the norm (hence hits). I don't think openers need to be long or short to be successful; good music is good music, and good songs good songs. I could just as easily give a list of great songs, and some posters have given examples above, with songs that open with singing rather than instrumentals.

I'm not saying you're wrong at all, just saying the whole premise of the article is rubbish to assume all music is one way or another.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@goldorak - oh! How could I forget GnR's classic cover!!

After reading some of the posts here, I'm thinking I'd like to go to a summer concert put on by foreigners living in Japan, playing music outside the corporate box!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This is how Alvin and the Chipmunks got started.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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