How much of the population is music oriented?

My guess of people interested in learning/producing music is about 1-2% which is discouraging and frustrating while majority are just listeners.

What do you think? How can we change that?

What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

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Comments

  • Gosh, even in the US, a population of 300,000,000, 2% would be 600,000! Out of seven billion? 140,000,000 (I think). Too much competition if you ask me!

    You know our ideas about these things are kind of wacky sometimes. Being of the Jewish persuasion I have a lot of fun asking folks (usually blasted at a party) how many Jews there are in the world. The answers are often amazing, I will return with the answer after you have has the chance to mull it over.

  • Ya interesting. I have no idea. I would have thought higher due to my biased sample of most all my friends and family are musicians.

    They range in how active they are from friends who are fully professional, some singer/songwriters, some engineers as day jobs, more just a hobby but regular gig. And then coming from TN, I have a huge swath of friends that you could probably know for years and they wouldn't even tell you they are a musician but if they come to a party at my house I'll be like "can you get on" [acoustic, drums etc.] and here is the key, tempo, progression and they can jam away.

    Found a lot of people fall off as they get families, full time jobs and such. Glad I didn't. Organized a high school bands reunion a few years ago, just started as a joke and became a really fun show...and we started with a list of 30 high school bands spanning about 10 years. Only 4 were all still had all the members playing. Granted, 3 guys were not able to do it because they were on national/international tours that schedules didn't permit.

  • I have heard some jabber that the advent of music recording reduced the amount of people learning to play. Just jabbah, no data.

  • There are area's in the world were all music is forbidden. For example: Afghanistan under Tabliban rule.

  • @mannix said:
    There are area's in the world were all music is forbidden. For example: Afghanistan under Tabliban rule.

    I thought music was fine so long as it didn’t provoke or have a sexual connotation.

  • edited August 9

    @LinearLineman said:
    Gosh, even in the US, a population of 300,000,000, 2% would be 600,000! Out of seven billion? 140,000,000 (I think). Too much competition if you ask me!

    There is always competition - even in a niche market :smile: I'm sure not everyone who is interested in music as a hobby/pro is able to learn, play or practice due to constraints such as time, other commitments, resources, etc. There may be some hidden gems in our society but no God Fathers to bring them into limelight and give them a push. But given a chance, their instinct will kick off and nothing can stop it. Birth inclination does not just go away - it undermines one's system.

    Music was my primary interest when I was a kid. But when computers emerged, they became my primary and music turned into a hobby.

  • edited August 9

    @universe said:

    @mannix said:
    There are area's in the world were all music is forbidden. For example: Afghanistan under Tabliban rule.

    I thought music was fine so long as it didn’t provoke or have a sexual connotation.

    Nope. Even the possesion of for example old audio cassettes means imprisonment. Besides that "All musical instruments are banned, and when discovered by agents of the Office for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice are destroyed, sometimes being burnt..."

    "The only forms of musical expression permitted today are the singing of certain kinds of religious poetry..."

    btw there are nowadays more and more areas in the world were this kind of law is established. Especially in regions of Africa and Asia where radical islam gets into power.

    link
    http://www.rawa.org/music.htm

  • @MobileMusic said:
    My guess of people interested in learning/producing music is about 1-2% which is discouraging and frustrating while majority are just listeners.

    What do you think? How can we change that?

    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    This is a multifaceted question but I do think about it a lot. I think there are fewer people than you might think who even care about music. To A LOT of people, music is essentially white noise. Going to a concert is fun for social reasons, singing songs at camp is fun. music for art and meaning? Much fewer people, I would say maybe 20% of the population (akin to the number of people who participate in music of any kind in any given school).

    Now, interest is difficult because at different stages in life this requires more effort. I would say probably 20% of kids in the developed world learn music of some sort, give or take 5%. Music is great, parents love it, good for the brain, brings people together, yada-yada. It has Parental support. As soon as that child leaves the nest? Drops off significantly, I mean a fucking cliff. It is a no brainer as to why, people want to get jobs, have kids, do life. At that stage of life the development of any hobby above and beyond the typical day to day mandatory life is, let's face it, a fucking miracle. Not to mention being a musician becomes almost shameful in the adult word. I think you can probably say that the number of people who play music into their adult life is probably 1% of the population, the vast majority are likely people who play piano or guitar once a week/month for funsies.

    Writers of music are like a diamond in the rough. I think forums like this make it difficult to understand how rare it is for a person to produce/ compose music of any type. It is incredibly rare. This won't change man, it never has and never will. The spark of creativity is already rare enough, the motivation and desire to make it come to life is even rarer. .5% of the population would be generous for creating music. 1-2% is probably close to all creative types across the whole spectrum of art.

    Honestly, music is just my favorite means of expression. Like most people on this forum, if I didn't have it I would make something else. That is who we are.

  • @MobileMusic said:

    @LinearLineman said:
    Gosh, even in the US, a population of 300,000,000, 2% would be 600,000! Out of seven billion? 140,000,000 (I think). Too much competition if you ask me!

    There is always competition - even in a niche market :smile: I'm sure not everyone who is interested in music as a hobby/pro is able to learn, play or practice due to constraints such as time, other commitments, resources, etc. There may be some hidden gems in our society but no God Fathers to bring them into limelight and give them a push. But given a chance, their instinct will kick off and nothing can stop it. Birth inclination does not just go away - it undermines one's system.

    Music was my primary interest when I was a kid. But when computers emerged, they became my primary and music turned into a hobby.

    My primary personal interest has always been music. I never took much personal interest in markets, money, jobs, working, adulthood, responsibility, reality but alas...

  • @AudioGus said:
    My primary personal interest has always been music. I never took much personal interest in markets, money, jobs, working, adulthood, responsibility, reality but alas...

    Oh boy, yeah. lol. Glad it's not just me.

  • I got into music 6 years ago when I picked up the ukulele. Now music is on my mind all the time, it’s the first and last thing I think of when I wake up and before I sleep. I’m very happy I started doing music at the age of 36.

  • @AudioGus said:
    I have heard some jabber that the advent of music recording reduced the amount of people learning to play. Just jabbah, no data.

    Sure, a century ago sales of musical instruments were much higher per capita. People made their own. As it has recently been becoming less and less possible to make a living as a musician, hopefully we'll return to that level of amateurism.

  • @MobileMusic said:
    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    Alternative activities in the absence of music are finding ways to make more music. That is why I put apps on my phone, because I usually have it with me, even though I hate making music on the phone I can.

  • In the old days you heard music in a church, or some folk tunes.
    Music and sophisticated musical instruments were for the rich and well to do,. Historically, the global environment (Afghanistan and the Mojave desert aside) today is the most fecund, (fertile and full of shit) it has ever been. Every musical interest has a following of hundreds to millions. I can go to YouTube and hear almost any piece of music I desire for free. It has never been so good! At least in first world countries, but even in the third worlds there is so much available ( I think).

  • @MobileMusic said:
    My guess of people interested in learning/producing music is about 1-2% which is discouraging and frustrating while majority are just listeners.

    What do you think? How can we change that?

    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    Not enough.

    Music is it by choice.

    I need to feel productive and stimulated.

    Otherwise it is money making specifically, or nurturing pets or loved ones.

    Music is the thing most present.

  • edited September 2

    @shiftsynth1 said:

    @MobileMusic said:
    My guess of people interested in learning/producing music is about 1-2% which is discouraging and frustrating while majority are just listeners.

    What do you think? How can we change that?

    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    This is a multifaceted question but I do think about it a lot. I think there are fewer people than you might think who even care about music. To A LOT of people, music is essentially white noise. Going to a concert is fun for social reasons, singing songs at camp is fun. music for art and meaning? Much fewer people, I would say maybe 20% of the population (akin to the number of people who participate in music of any kind in any given school).

    Now, interest is difficult because at different stages in life this requires more effort. I would say probably 20% of kids in the developed world learn music of some sort, give or take 5%. Music is great, parents love it, good for the brain, brings people together, yada-yada. It has Parental support. As soon as that child leaves the nest? Drops off significantly, I mean a fucking cliff. It is a no brainer as to why, people want to get jobs, have kids, do life. At that stage of life the development of any hobby above and beyond the typical day to day mandatory life is, let's face it, a fucking miracle. Not to mention being a musician becomes almost shameful in the adult word. I think you can probably say that the number of people who play music into their adult life is probably 1% of the population, the vast majority are likely people who play piano or guitar once a week/month for funsies.

    Writers of music are like a diamond in the rough. I think forums like this make it difficult to understand how rare it is for a person to produce/ compose music of any type. It is incredibly rare. This won't change man, it never has and never will. The spark of creativity is already rare enough, the motivation and desire to make it come to life is even rarer. .5% of the population would be generous for creating music. 1-2% is probably close to all creative types across the whole spectrum of art.

    Honestly, music is just my favorite means of expression. Like most people on this forum, if I didn't have it I would make something else. That is who we are.

    Well said! That sounds more accurate :smile:

    I bought a new box Guitar for $4 (Indian currency back in the 80's) when I was 14 with two year's worth of my pocket-money micro savings at a bank inside my school but could not afford to take music classes. With hardly any books even at a free library (Internet did not exist until the late mid-90's and it was not accessible to many for a long time), I taught myself music by playing around with the Guitar, a 6-hole bamboo Flute (bansuri) and a 2-octave Banjo. The Flute was the cheapest for under 25 cents followed by Banjo for a dollar and Guitar - their notes were not accurate and the quality was bad! I expected accurate notes. Music became my chief priority over eating/sleeping as there were no computers/internet yet. My situation was frustrating back then but looking back, I'm glad I did not have much that made me more competitive and not a trust-fund kid or an entitled jerk. I was a die-hard fan of Pink Floyd, Sting, Dire Straits, Pet Shop Boys, Madonna, etc. for their melodies. It would have been great if it was an emerging country like it is now when I was still there 20 years ago - some parts like Hyderabad look like Silicon Valley now - highly computer-literate and hugely technology oriented! I worked there for over a decade for peanuts with no savings.

    My assumption of 1-2% was based on places I worked at with 100-250 people (I know these are poor metrics to draw conclusions) and I would be lucky to find hardly one or two people (or none) who are interested in music with real instruments. Others show absolutely NO interest at all. The strange thing is - even though they are not interested in music and would not try playing/learning any music or listen to/appreciate someone playing music (and as per their own statements, their kids HATE music), they drag their kids to music classes! How is that fair? I keep wondering - how it feels like to have a life with NO interest in music (maybe the same way they think the other way about people like us). Maybe that's a very easy/romantic life? So far, I've observed people who are not interested in music are also not quality-conscious (not sure how far that is accurate based on my poor metrics).

    Maybe, those who are interested in learning/producing music are the ones who are highly gifted. Not everyone is wired the same way.

    Maybe it is good to be in a niche as it will have less competition and more demand :smile: but the frustration is bad.

  • @mannix said:

    @universe said:

    @mannix said:
    There are area's in the world were all music is forbidden. For example: Afghanistan under Tabliban rule.

    I thought music was fine so long as it didn’t provoke or have a sexual connotation.

    Nope. Even the possesion of for example old audio cassettes means imprisonment. Besides that "All musical instruments are banned, and when discovered by agents of the Office for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice are destroyed, sometimes being burnt..."

    "The only forms of musical expression permitted today are the singing of certain kinds of religious poetry..."

    btw there are nowadays more and more areas in the world were this kind of law is established. Especially in regions of Africa and Asia where radical islam gets into power.

    link
    http://www.rawa.org/music.htm

    That's a nightmare and a punishment for people who are inclined towards music :neutral:

  • @MobileMusic said:
    What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    When I don't have an instrument, I sing. When I'm in a place where I can't sing, I hum quietly.

  • @LinearLineman said:
    I can go to YouTube and hear almost any piece of music I desire for free. It has never been so good! At least in first world countries, but even in the third worlds there is so much available ( I think).

    Check out this toothless, raggedy, but unbelievably talented street singer in India from 1996 (Hint: turn on the CC captions to read the amazing lyrics):

  • @LinearLineman said:
    It has never been so good! At least in first world countries

    You can even go to college and major in playing hillbilly music. That's what these chicks did, and they are awesome:

  • @MobileMusic said:
    My guess of people interested in learning/producing music is about 1-2% which is discouraging and frustrating while majority are just listeners.

    What do you think? How can we change that?

    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    My fav activity in the absence of music is writing down music :smiley:

  • The creative impulse takes many forms, music is only one small part.

  • @MobileMusic said:

    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    Without sounding like a pretentious arse, I consider my musical projects an extension of my art, so without the musical elements it’d be mostly painting. Better to have both though.

    For me my music making process is stimulated and inspired by the tools available. Desktop and iOS software is so ridiculously good at the moment, I can’t resist diving in and creating stuff, enabling more creative expression than what was achievable ten years ago.

    Times are good for creative music making.

  • My father was a child prodigy, won awards as a violinist, but when it was time to make a living, he quit playing. I never heard him play. He had me listening to his large record collection throughout my childhood; I was the only kid in the family who was really interested.

    I have a nephew who was musically gifted from a young age, was hugely successful in the music business, but retired at a young age. He took his millions and is now a businessman. A younger nephew has the same potential, but he gets distracted by other things, like sports.

    My wife was a singer in a band I played in. That’s where we met. She eventually stopped singing and became an artist (painting).

    Even many who are musicians don’t stick with it throughout their lives.

    I’ve known a lot of musicians in my life, so I have to think about it to realize we’re such a tiny minority. I don’t have numbers, but music-making was the thing when I was young, then technology enabled other exciting forms of expression to compete. If I didn’t have music, I’d be more into visual arts, which for some reason appears to attract more creative types than does music.

    Most people are not artistically creative, or don’t have the leisure time to pursue the arts. Maybe that’s why it’s such a scary dangerous world.

  • Procreation. As the great Rabbi Hillel said, the rest is commentary.

    10,000 souls have viewed the FabFilter thread.
    What does that tell you?

    @lovadamusic, we are a fear driven species, that is why it is a scary, dangerous world. Fear has a purpose, self preservation. It is built into our OS. It is called the amygdala, or primitive brain. I am not sure being an artist automatically makes you a peace lover. Both Hitler and Churchill were painters. This thread is faskinatin' as the great philosopher Popeye would say. But any pissing and moaning about the state of art in the world is such an old story. The first art was about killing, whether a rhapsody about the hunt by the glimmering shadows cast by the fire on the cave wall or the beautiful depiction of animals and the men who killed them.

    Artist or bricklayer fear and survival rules us all. I prefer making music to software design, but every time I take a bite of a lamb chop I am killing a little lambie. I avoided the Vietnam war. I told myself if faced with a man wanting to kill me with a gun and I had a weapon to survive I would let him kill me so as not to stain my karma (tho I managed to muck it up pretty well anyway). But at 70 that sounds pretty much like bullshit. I could kill. If true to my amygdala I would have to admit I would enjoy killing but for the existence of my conscience, guilt and social pressure. And I am an artist! As was Lennie Reifenstahl, Hitler's favorite photographer and propagandist. And Lennie was a woman!

    Music is so powerful. It does not know right from wrong. Robert Duval flew into battle with Die Valkyrie blaring from his chopper. Bagpipes were designed to scare the enemy as they trudged into battle. Mozart makes fetuses happy. Music is everything, but it does not have an agenda. We make it so. And artist or arms maker there is a killer in every one of us.... Except for the saints, of which there are precious few compared to all the artists. We suppress it if we are lovers and we are right to do so. It ennobles us. This battle with darkness.

  • Like @shiftsynth1 said, I think forums like this skew our perception of how many people are actively doing music related things. To me, it seems like EVERYONE does and EVERYONE/ANYONE can. But if you get off the interwebz and look around where you work, people you know, I've got to agree it doesn't really seem like most people do.

    Even if there are ONE THOUSAND people here, and ONE THOUSAND people on KVR forum, or whatever, it's really just a drop in the bucket. Even if it was ten thousand people apiece.

  • edited August 10

    @LinearLineman said:
    Procreation. As the great Rabbi Hillel said, the rest is commentary.

    10,000 souls have viewed the FabFilter thread.
    What does that tell you?

    Those are views and not viewers which averages to 33 views per poster. It could easily just be in the hundreds for number of viewers.

  • @MonzoPro said:

    @MobileMusic said:

    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    Without sounding like a pretentious arse, I consider my musical projects an extension of my art, so without the musical elements it’d be mostly painting. Better to have both though.

    For me my music making process is stimulated and inspired by the tools available. Desktop and iOS software is so ridiculously good at the moment, I can’t resist diving in and creating stuff, enabling more creative expression than what was achievable ten years ago.

    Times are good for creative music making.

    I originaly was motivated to get into art and graphics to support music. My ideal would have been to make music for a living and do album covers and videos (vhs, then dvds etc) as a compliment. The ideal ratio would have been 20% effort on visuals and 80% on music. These ideas were formed in the late 80s to early/mid 90s, then Napster / web came in, album sales/royalties became crap (aprently they were never that good anyway for what I liked making) and I got stuck in corporate genre art as live music never clicked with me. If I could take a break from the corporate shill art world for a while and deprogram the god awful rules set that it imposes then maybe I could find my way back to imagining a nice synthesis of the two aspects again. Ahh well, the next life perhaps.

  • @AudioGus said:

    @MonzoPro said:

    @MobileMusic said:

    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    Without sounding like a pretentious arse, I consider my musical projects an extension of my art, so without the musical elements it’d be mostly painting. Better to have both though.

    For me my music making process is stimulated and inspired by the tools available. Desktop and iOS software is so ridiculously good at the moment, I can’t resist diving in and creating stuff, enabling more creative expression than what was achievable ten years ago.

    Times are good for creative music making.

    I originaly was motivated to get into art and graphics to support music. My ideal would have been to make music for a living and do album covers and videos (vhs, then dvds etc) as a compliment. The ideal ratio would have been 20% effort on visuals and 80% on music. These ideas were formed in the late 80s to early/mid 90s, then Napster / web came in, album sales/royalties became crap (aprently they were never that good anyway for what I liked making) and I got stuck in corporate genre art as live music never clicked with me. If I could take a break from the corporate shill art world for a while and deprogram the god awful rules set that it imposes then maybe I could find my way back to imagining a nice synthesis of the two aspects again. Ahh well, the next life perhaps.

    I don’t make money from my music, and very little from painting. Don’t make much money from anything these days to be honest.

    The way I look at it I’ve got five, ten, maybe fifteen good years left, so might as well spend that doing something I enjoy, unlike the last 40 spent working for cunts.

    You end up with nothing anyway, do what makes you happy.

  • @MonzoPro said:

    @AudioGus said:

    @MonzoPro said:

    @MobileMusic said:

    What’s life without music? What are your alternative activities in the absence of music?

    Without sounding like a pretentious arse, I consider my musical projects an extension of my art, so without the musical elements it’d be mostly painting. Better to have both though.

    For me my music making process is stimulated and inspired by the tools available. Desktop and iOS software is so ridiculously good at the moment, I can’t resist diving in and creating stuff, enabling more creative expression than what was achievable ten years ago.

    Times are good for creative music making.

    I originaly was motivated to get into art and graphics to support music. My ideal would have been to make music for a living and do album covers and videos (vhs, then dvds etc) as a compliment. The ideal ratio would have been 20% effort on visuals and 80% on music. These ideas were formed in the late 80s to early/mid 90s, then Napster / web came in, album sales/royalties became crap (aprently they were never that good anyway for what I liked making) and I got stuck in corporate genre art as live music never clicked with me. If I could take a break from the corporate shill art world for a while and deprogram the god awful rules set that it imposes then maybe I could find my way back to imagining a nice synthesis of the two aspects again. Ahh well, the next life perhaps.

    I don’t make money from my music, and very little from painting. Don’t make much money from anything these days to be honest.

    The way I look at it I’ve got five, ten, maybe fifteen good years left, so might as well spend that doing something I enjoy, unlike the last 40 spent working for cunts.

    You end up with nothing anyway, do what makes you happy.

    Money is a big part of happiness. You know, comfort, toys, supporting loved ones, travel, shows, good food. Takes the green.

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