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  • Interesting Article On Being Swamped

    Touched on this in the Streaming thread...

    It has been said that we are living in a golden age of music fandom; with a single click, we can access almost every piece of music ever recorded, and for less than it would cost to hear a single song on a jukebox in 1955. But I've begun to feel that my rabid consumption of music, when coupled with the unprecedented access encouraged by new technology, has endangered my ability to process it critically.

    Streaming has become the primary way we listen to music: in 2016, streaming surpassed both physical media and digital downloads as the largest source of recorded music sales. There are plenty of valid complaints about a music world dominated by streaming. Among the many arguments musicians level against Spotify, for example, one typically repeated is that the artist is the only link in the food chain getting the proverbial shaft. This argument is often predicated on notions of economics, intellectual property and ethics. Missing from a larger discussion is the radical idea that maybe it is the consumers who are being done the greatest disservice, and that this access-bonanza may be cheapening the listening experience by transforming fans into file clerks and experts into dilettantes. I don't want my musical discoveries dictated by a series of intuitive algorithms any more than I want to experience Jamaica via an all-inclusive trip to Sandals.
    National Public Radio
    In the streaming era, music fans have access to more music than they could ever consume. Is there any way to slow things down?

  • #2
    Faced with almost infinite choice most people retreat into a small self-limited pool of familiar music.

    Comment


    • #3
      IMHO, WADR and AOT, for my money for "radical" there read "weak".

      If consumers are being done a disservice (oops, lapsing into the lingo there) it is that they are being encouraged to behave as "consumers" (i.e. unthinkingly involved in 'consumerism').

      "Dictated"! As if! If people really want to explore new musics, it really isn't that difficult. Try asking someone in a friendly way what it is they are listening to (appalled expressions all around). Sooner or later you will get a recommendation that prompts you to follow up.

      Clearly, some care as to context is called for. You don't want to get beaten up, or accused of harassment.
      Last edited by Grim Lounge Cowboy; 27-01-2018, 06:27 AM. Reason: Adding an obvious pointer for the socially inept.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by peretti View Post
        Faced with almost infinite choice most people retreat into a small self-limited pool of familiar music.
        There's so much music out there if you wished you'd never need to listen to anything more than once. But what's the point of that? To hear a great tune and know you'll never hear it again. So it's natural anyone who listens to music on any sort of even semi regular basis has a filtering system and a pool of music which they treasure. It doesn't mean they can't keep exploring and grow the pool depending on mood, life circumstances, bank balance, fashion, the weather or whatever...

        Personally I really like diving into different oceans of music on occasion, it's very refreshing and stops me stagnating... But my ear needs an "in", that is i'll randomly hear somethingwhen I least expect it which completely turns my head around and suddenly i'm sucked into a rabbit hole of a new band / genre / country, It just needs that one tune just to connect and the doors of my musical affinities are blown wide open. It's this serendipity that has me fascinated... what is it that jumps out and wacks me between the ears, what is it in my mood, life circumstances, bank balance, fashion, the weather or whatever which catches me unaware and changes my musical direction?

        It might just be as simple as the passing of time...
        In ((( VISUAL ))) Stereo

        Eclectic Mud


        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Xann View Post
          But I've begun to feel that my rabid consumption of music, when coupled with the unprecedented access encouraged by new technology, has endangered my ability to process it critically.
          It sounds like this person is suffering from overload and not even stopping to take notice of whether his/her body is reacting in a pleasurable way.
          I'm obsessed with listening to as much music as I can before I die BECAUSE of the physical pleasure I get from some music, in some settings, at certain times.

          I remember when the Internet was awash with the first tsunami of downloadable albums long before the record companies woke up. At that time I downloaded everything I could, but probably only managed to listen to 25% of it. But I did discover some amazing music.

          I don't do streaming music as a general rule, but I'll go to specific pages on Bandcamp or Soundcloud if recommended.

          There have always been amazing music blogs run by passionate people. They come and go, some staying longer than others. There was an amazing Brazilian guy with a parrot (El Zokarlo or something like that), Madrotter is still going with his 1 man mission to preserve Malaysian music and there are many many others ...

          There is also I think, some truth in the fact that downloads and streaming encourage the constant hopping between tracks without even actually listening to an entire song/piece. I know because I've done it. When you buy an old record, you clean it, listen to it, read the sleeve notes, file it or flog it. Everything takes longer.

          But I wouldn't want to go back to the old days where if you didn't live in Ethiopia, you couldn't hear Ethiopian music ...

          Maybe you just need to go at it slower.

          Having said that, I can normally tell after 1 listen to an LP whether it's ever going to need another.

          However I don't think there's any way to "slow things down" unless you do it yourself, and invest the time to give a piece of music a chance. Finding a curator you trust can be a big help rather than just allowing Spotify to fill your head, but it's something the listener has to do.

          I wonder if I've made any sense at all. It's a bit hard to be concise and to the point when you're pretending to work ;-)
          "White paper inner sleeve is pristine ..."

          Comment


          • #6
            totally agree with the last paragraph.

            "we only ever really love 10 albums, and we spend the rest of our listening lives seeking facsimiles of those 10, pursuing the initial rush"
            i think we find these albums between the ages of 14 and 18 and most of them around 16
            instagram.com/vinylhoard

            Comment


            • #7
              I do like the concept of Spotify. The amount of potential music in your pocket, but I just don't understand why it still exists. It seems to consistently make a loss.
              "Spotify Ltd. lost 539 million euros ($601 million) last year [2016]"
              "The company borrowed an additional $1 billion in March 2016." etc

              As a working model I can't see it making actual money. Plus they seem to be constantly sued by someone.
              http://money.cnn.com/2018/01/03/tech...ngs/index.html


              This Silicon Valley clip now makes a lot of sense if they are just trying to hype up the company to sell it on.




              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Turboellis View Post

                There have always been amazing music blogs run by passionate people. They come and go, some staying longer than others. There was an amazing Brazilian guy with a parrot (El Zokarlo or something like that)
                The blog was called Loronix. It's gone now but someone has put some of it back up at https://orfaosdoloronix.wordpress.com/
                "White paper inner sleeve is pristine ..."

                Comment


                • #9
                  But I've begun to feel that my rabid consumption of music, when coupled with the unprecedented access encouraged by new technology, has endangered my ability to process it critically.


                  Possibly something in this. Comparable things are being said concerning language use.
                  Last edited by Grim Lounge Cowboy; 31-01-2018, 11:09 AM. Reason: Quoted wrong text!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I've never felt swamped in the slightest. It's all brilliant. Access to amazing records I'd never have heard or even heard of 20 years ago, most of the rare unaffordable stuff I'll never buy sitting on my hard drive, entire continents, scenes and genres opened up.

                    I don't want my musical discoveries dictated by a series of intuitive algorithms any more than I want to experience Jamaica via an all-inclusive trip to Sandals.

                    Neither do I. which is why I pay no attention to intuitive algorithms and follow people's recommendations or my own curiosity instead.

                    And yes, life's too short. What's new?
                    Vardy.....¬°¬°¬°PELIGRO!!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Great Day View Post
                      I do like the concept of Spotify. The amount of potential music in your pocket, but I just don't understand why it still exists. It seems to consistently make a loss.
                      "Spotify Ltd. lost 539 million euros ($601 million) last year [2016]"
                      "The company borrowed an additional $1 billion in March 2016." etc

                      As a working model I can't see it making actual money. Plus they seem to be constantly sued by someone.
                      http://money.cnn.com/2018/01/03/tech...ngs/index.html


                      This Silicon Valley clip now makes a lot of sense if they are just trying to hype up the company to sell it on.

                      Investors value companies on growth and potential, so even with lawsuits and losses Spotify still looks good. More and more people are paying to stream music and Spotify is the number one choice. Amazon, iTunes and Google Play have been going all out to get paying users for their own music services but their new user increases are relatively piffling compared to Spotify. On top of that it's really hard to launch a new music streaming service, so Spotify don't have much new competition (Tidal anyone?) coming over the horizon.

                      In less than two years their paying subscribers have more than doubled from 30 million to 70 million and they've barely scratched the surface in a lot of countries they operate in. Overall users went up from 100 million to 150 million at the same time so the money men are salivating at the thought of investing. Apple and Google stock doesn't go up or down by big margins these days but Spotify stock could rise stratospherically if they carry on getting bigger and better. Killings to be made. Amazon stock, too, but for different reasons.

                      The lawsuits are for a whole other discussion but mostly that's just how the music biz approaches negotiations.








                      Comment


                      • #12
                        What Fuz said, just finding that 'in' is what inspires me down musical rabbit holes these days. The fiver I spent on a 'Michael Nesmith' record has sent me on a massive 'country/americana' bender for the last year or so which would never have happened otherwise. You find that door and then it opens that curiosity which gets the dopamine flowing. It is a buzz when you join the dots and begin to hear things you've dismissed or never heard.

                        Nowt wrong with streaming mind you albeit I find it harder to find that 'in' than through a physical product.

                        Originally posted by someblokecalledfuz View Post

                        There's so much music out there if you wished you'd never need to listen to anything more than once. But what's the point of that? To hear a great tune and know you'll never hear it again. So it's natural anyone who listens to music on any sort of even semi regular basis has a filtering system and a pool of music which they treasure. It doesn't mean they can't keep exploring and grow the pool depending on mood, life circumstances, bank balance, fashion, the weather or whatever...

                        Personally I really like diving into different oceans of music on occasion, it's very refreshing and stops me stagnating... But my ear needs an "in", that is i'll randomly hear somethingwhen I least expect it which completely turns my head around and suddenly i'm sucked into a rabbit hole of a new band / genre / country, It just needs that one tune just to connect and the doors of my musical affinities are blown wide open. It's this serendipity that has me fascinated... what is it that jumps out and wacks me between the ears, what is it in my mood, life circumstances, bank balance, fashion, the weather or whatever which catches me unaware and changes my musical direction?

                        It might just be as simple as the passing of time...
                        Mixes, Music: https://www.mixcloud.com/amitron_7/

                        Music: https://blackmoofou.bandcamp.com/

                        Videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCL1...bw92ZSjvLMZKlQ

                        Latest Infant Project: https://soundcloud.com/bcmf

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Almost by definition everyone here is a bit more dedicated than the average, or even fairly enthusiastic, music listener so it is no surprise that many of us are ahead of getting dictated to by Spotify etc.

                          But swamped, I sure feel it, and yet also I am endlessly kicking myself for not having picked up on some now much lauded LP when it was on an MP3 blog or a swap CD ten years ago.
                          Enthusiastic vagueness passes for scholarship in the twilight world of the disc-jockey.

                          John Peel

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I think the idea of some self enforced scarcity on your listening is a good idea. Some of my friends have, often quite complex, systems, like one guy only buys or gets by any means one album a week. He'll more or less throw back in your face the offer of your rad new comp. But the idea of only one album a week, at all makes it ridiculously hard.
                            Enthusiastic vagueness passes for scholarship in the twilight world of the disc-jockey.

                            John Peel

                            Comment

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