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Is the love of music diminishing for younger generations?

This is a 15-minute investment, but quite interesting:

Comments

  • is grass getting not as green as it used to be for older generations?

  • Nah, it’s just different. Different types of music, different ways to listen to it, different ways of purchasing it, different ways of discovering it, free ways to listen, etc... The list goes on but those are some of the main ones.

  • Nah, my boys are hyped about music at an earlier age than I ever was. The one thing I do notice is that they cover way more genres because the tribes seem to be less defined. It’s pretty great.

  • edited April 29

    It feels great when I meet people in their teens listening to and loving the exact albums I listened to and loved in my teens back in the 80s. Not that it is the only good music that was ever made BUT IT SURE FEELS THAT WAY GODDAMIT!!

    PS. That videos thumbnail ensures I will never watch it.

  • Those who have a deep appreciation for music have always been a smaller group than those who have a mild interest in it.

  • heshes
    edited April 29

    I'm sure the love of automobiles has diminished for the younger generation. It is a pale, far cry from what previous generations experienced (I was born in 1963).

    Regarding music it seems a little harder to discern. Certainly there's much more "automation" in music production, of a kind that seems to sap some of the life out of music. Quantization, auto-tune. Just in general the use of computers. Music back when I was kid seems somehow more "raw" and creative, more interesting musically, not as "processed". I'm not familiar enough with current music to be able to tell for sure. But it sure seems like music and lyrics were also more "literary" back then, and more important culturally. Hippies, Vietnam, free love, civil rights, the 60's and 70's (slightly before my young adulthood) were hotbed of creativity in music, and that music is rightfully still important and listened to. Hiphop still has some of that now maybe.

    I think I read a piece somewhere fairly recently about how food had taken over some of the role that music played in helping define a young person's tastes and identity. Things like coffee, beer, various kinds of specialized and gourmet food items. A lot of young people seem really into those. That kind of thing with food didn't really exist for younger generation back 40 or 50 years ago.

  • @vasilymilovidov said:
    is grass getting not as green as it used to be for older generations?

    So true 😂😂

    Kids have access to so much more music than any other generation.

  • I don’t know. How does one measure that?

    Does the video seriously look at this quantatively, or does it just deal with perceptions and commonly repeated generalizations?

  • Maybe a deep dive into culture and the times. ? Too-much-information-age? Disposable age? I don't know.

    I watched it, and as a longtime stagehand, teacher, and failed muso I agree with what the guitar teacher dude said. Really knowing the music, who made it, an album's deep cuts, liner notes, reading the engineering details - nowadays most kids only want to hear the hits, and move on to the next distraction.

    But he's telling it from a teacher's perspective. There's exceptions though, like muso's kids, or kids not caught up on social media, which is nice.

  • Beatles Mania

    Taylor Swift casual selfie

  • I think, the music industry has changed, and in addition to that, the radio stations. They both getting more and more to a successful business model, and less cultural influence. Back in the days (Europe), a lot of radio stations are financed by the state, so they could broadcast music with less pressure from record companies.
    Due to the possibility of new ways for artist to promote theirselves, record companies are forced to make new business models with market research to investigate in less artist, but with more profit. They are plugging their products to commercial radio stations (pay for play).
    You hear on commercial stations every hour the same song.
    I think, Spotify and sorts, has a great influence in the way how young people search for music, and how they are willing to invest time to listen to alternative genres.
    Today its easy to listen to different genres of music, due to accessibility, Before Napster, you have to go to a record store, visit a concert, plough through your parents or brother/sisters records to find your taste, and also the influence of your friends and schoolmates (punk, rock, hippy, new wave, jazz etc.)

  • Just the opposite, IMO. Firstly, it is necessary to think globally. Secondly, there are more kids than ever. Thirdly, access to the world’s music past and present is beyond imagining in its effect on young people.

  • edited April 29

    My 3 kids (aged 10, 13 & 15) all listen to music and talk about music as much as I did.
    One of the differences is that they can listen to pretty much any composition ever recorded at any time, in any place, for free (we have Spotify premium family). Therefore it has much less perceived value.

    Whereas I had to record the Sunday evening chart show on BBC Radio 1 on my cassette deck to have my own copy of those songs, or save up my pocket money to buy the single, record or cassette (eventually CD), after which I’d listen to that one album over and over whilst studying the liner notes.

    But it fills me with joy when we’re in the car, my son puts his playlist on and it is filled with much of the same music I was listening to at his age!

  • edited April 29

    nah, kids love music

  • @vasilymilovidov said:
    is grass getting not as green as it used to be for older generations?

    Absolutely. You can find examples of this genre going back to ancient Greeks and Romans. Nothing changes. As we get older, some of us become like this.

    But you guys just go ahead and ignore us, just like we ignored those before us when we were young and they came up with the same crap. :)

  • It really was all fields round here 🥴

  • You know what an almost unfailing way is to determine that you are getting old: You don't understand the music that the young generation is listening to anymore.

    Or to quote grandpa simpson: "I used to be with it. But then they changed what it was. Now what I'm with isn't it, and what it is seems wierd and scary to me. It will happen to you".

    But don't worry, I get old, too. I also don't get it anymore, but I guarantee you: Your kids will say the same about the generations that come after them. It's the way the world works.

  • "There are simply two kinds of music, good music and the other kind ..."
    Sir Duke

  • I watched the video yesterday before the thread here, and in some ways can relate. I recall how i could literally ‘sing’ all the guitar solos off of Appetite for Destruction. But access to music was different in those days, the bandwidth was tiny - now we have the whole smorgasbord of recorded music history at our fingertips. I’m delighted when I hear something new, sometimes weird coming from my kids speakers. My daughter especially is discovering new sounds and finding what she likes and relates to and this thrills me no end!

  • edited April 29

    and also — this old culture of music consumption described in the video was primarily a product of rockism (although over time it consumed most of other genres). idealisation of the concept of an album in the end was very toxic and incredibly nearsighted. just look at all the lists of the greatest albums of all time and try not to fall into despair. it was a culture of masterpieces that you must pray on and worship geniuses who made them (but don't they dare not make another ok computer or dark side of the moon). it was maybe easier to love things back then, but i'm not sure it was healthier or, in fact, more respectful to the artists. and certainly it created a lot of bullshit and toxic hierarchies and fake pedestals.

    i say it as a grandad who only listens to bob dylan and autechre.

  • Culturally music is definitely less important than it used to be, and there are far fewer musical subcultures as well.

    As teenager I lived in rural Devon, and in the tiny local town there were mods in parkas on scooters, punks with mohicans, goths, metalheads etc...

    When I was in sixth form at least half the kids were obsessed with the Smiths, or The Jesus And Mary Chain, or The Velvet Undergound. You could tell what people liked by the way they dressed.

    At university in the early 90s kids were absolutely immersed in musical subcultures: indie, Madchester, grunge, ravers, goths, metal.

    The intensity and tribalism have long gone. My two teenage kids like music, but it's not as culturally dominant for them as it was for me as a Gen X teenager. Teenagers now are immersed in internet culture, that's their world: YouTube, Reddit, and memes.

  • I was in a random super market the other day. An early Michael Jackson classic came on and a 15 year old girl just starts grooving down the isle. I think music is always going to be there and I think even with the screen culture we have today people love to move and feel. The sound of it might change a little over time, but I think it's always going to have a relevancy to the generation it's created in.

    Funny thing about goths and punks and mods etc. ... A couple of years ago I was in a mall in Wisconsin and there was a very mainstream shop that was just about goth type fashion. In a way it made me feel very sad. No longer some extreme sub culture, just another piece of fashion down at the mall. I loved the mod culture back in the day too with a little bit of punk.

  • I was listening to some Moog tutorial on my ipad last night with my headphones on. My 16 year old boy comes walking down the hall towards me and says, "Dad, dude! J Cole is gonna drop something soon" apparently reading some tweet for information. "First Kendrick and now this!!!" He was so excited and had a huge grin on his face.

    I was thinking, that at his age, it was all about the Beatles for me but I didn't have the chance of a new release from them as they had long since broken up. I was a bit envious of his excitement. :smiley:

  • edited April 29

    The kids like music just fine. The generational differences, as I see it:

    • Digital plenitude, which encourages a non-tribal, wide-ranging approach to finding new music; pitched in a less attractive way, it can also lead to muddled/undistinguished songwriting and vision that is unable to escape the past and create something new (see: Simon Reynolds’ book Retromania, which diagnoses the problem)

    • The Telecommunications Act of 1996, which allowed Clear Channel to buy tons of radio stations and basically snuff real variety and surprises from the pop/rock dial

    • Mainstream, globalized interest in forms that are production-based &/or textural and not necessarily song-oriented

    • Decline of rock, as well as the genre’s particular brand of physical aggression; in particular, I’ve noticed that my college students have little sense of punk’s spastic style, and those who do often condemn it as “aggro”

    • Rise of poptimism, partially because women/LGBTQ folks who were raised with pop (as opposed to rock/hip-hop) role models later gained access to stuff like Ableton and inexpensive interfaces; this is also connected to Clear Channel and the loudness war, which served pop dynamics more amiably than rock

    • By the same token: rise of cheap digital tools in general, many of which favor production over live instrumental performance

    • Also: practice spaces are expensive luxuries for a lot of people, drums are hard to mic (and expensive), guitars/amps require constant (expensive) maintenance, and bands are ego nests that can be difficult to keep together; by contrast, EDM and hip-hop and pop require some pirated software, an OK mic, and literally one person

    • Beyond that, the aforementioned genres, besides being massively popular - a move that was already in progress by the later ‘90s, really - are very conducive to digital collabs and remixes... that is, to an internet mindset

    To clarify, I think younger folks are still producing plenty of cool new bands, projects, and albums. From just the last decade, Death Grips, Melkbelly, Rick Rude, Palberta, Girl Band, Kendrick, Big Thief, and Parquet Courts all come to mind - and I’m def an OOT guy in my late 30s. And, to the OP’s point: my college students like this stuff as much (or more) than I do. I see Girlpool hats and Slowdive shirts and references to SOPHIE and 100 Gecs and Phoebe Bridgers in papers. Kids talk up Bowie, Prince, X-Ray Spex, and Steely Dan like they just discovered fire for the first time. Their relationship with music is fine! But they’re just living in a different socioeconomic reality than previous generations - one that values art in new, less obviously identity-defining ways. Tribes still exist - check out a video game forum! - but music is not their locus.

  • edited April 29

    These kids seem to like music.

  • edited April 29

    @mambonassau said:
    And, to the OP’s point: my college students like this stuff as much (or more) than I do. I see Girlpool hats and Slowdive shirts and references to SOPHIE and 100 Gecs and Phoebe Bridgers in papers. Kids talk up Bowie, Prince, X-Ray Spex, and Steely Dan like they just discovered fire for the first time. Their relationship with music is fine! But they’re just living in a different socioeconomic reality than previous generations - one that values art in new, less obviously identity-defining ways. Tribes still exist - check out a video game forum! - but music is not their locus.

    Also, if they are college students then that is a particular slice too. I found at a certain point I realised that my sampling of 'young people today' was based on ones I work with, but then that is a narrow slice too, not strictly defined by age but also by career path etc.

    Also, it seems like now tribalism still exists however a person can be a part of several at once or shift to different ones more easily in some ways. But overall the glue/magnetism of them is probably weaker.

    Anywho thanks for bringin up Retromania, sonds interesting!

  • A definitive NO.

    For proof, I introduce Exhibit A:

    BTS

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