here it goes.....
There has not been a decline of Black Musicianship and an overall lack of awareness in musicians in our field...why? because it's happenned in every field...from rock on down to country....The music field as a whole has and is suffering. Due to medium format specifics, economic anomolies, new demographics and a lack of awareness and morality by PD's and advertisors along side of the companies they represent. I see it as more of a societal decline that has affected the music industry as a whole.
For example....We all (meaning all of us in the Dance industry) wish we had the exposure, air time, event venues, corporate sponsorships that our brothers in music have in the so called Rock/Grunge world....to be known and adored by thousands right? To have videos on Mtv right?
Well to pique my interest I decided to go see one of these bands who were playing here in NYC this Monday. PaPa Roach...an amazing band..great entertainers..Moshin' in the pit and the whole nine..Mtv generation style! Now do you know these guys have been around for about 10 yrs.? The album is doing incredible and there videos are all over Mtv....wanna know how many people were jammed into Irving Plaza?
NO MORE THAN 250~~~!!!!!!
And this being promoted and sponsored by Clear Channel!!! The mofo's who run half the nations radio stations!!! Go figure........It seems the only way these bands can pack an event is by sharing the bill on like an Ozzfest with 15 bands!! But we as a public only see the footage of their alloted time and think 15,000 people came to see them play!!
just a mirage...folks...
So guess what sort of thinking was left to ramble through my head?
I figured we must be all hurting! Doesn't matter who...things are only looking rosy if you've been grandfathered in to this generation from a slew of hits you had at least 8 years ago.
On the issue of musicians vs. samplers and synths....
I believe that technology in one way has hurt the record business. Now I do play keys and play 90 percent of all the stuff on my tunes but I'm no Herbie Hancock... and I even can admit to technology making it too easy for everyone to make records. In there gluttonious corporate bottom line thinking (which means **** the pros we'll market samplers and synths to the average joe!) they (meaning synth manufacturers) managed to almost destroy any independent label's and top flight producers alongside with studios chances at making the money they deserve. How do you say? Well...look at the situation we face now...How many records are handed to you to check out on a weekly basis and what is the ratio that you wind up actually buying? I can honestly say that to me and many prominent figures in NYC that the agreeable amount is at about 25 to 1!!! This indirectly affects record sales and the amount distributors are willing to commit to. Thereby cutting into the amount they are willing to pay out to purchase a production and affecting the amount a producer has available to pay musicians, singers or what have you for this said production. This now affects the overall quality of the music. I heard a good saying yesterday from a friend who said " ...Yo...i'ma bout to ask this singer if she could do this track on credit!!" It's bad when ya gotta finance the singer!!!
Now you say...competition is good right? Well I do agree with that point to a certain extent...but distributors are feeling the itch and so are stores....so in their rightful quest to make money they've gotta push as much product as possible and if it means filling your head up with "yo.,..this track is the shit right now" then so be it!! No matter if it was made in some guys closet and the vocals are out of tune with the track. Now how many of those have we seen in the last year??!! Hence the overall decline of the quality of music being played, promoted and manufactured...Now in defense of not so fortunate people like myself who don't have a Hit Factory in my house..You either make good quality music(doesn't have to be a hit nor does everyone have to like it) or you make noise! Bottom line.
To make my point....It's a food chain event...and not many people can quite grasp this idea. It's not one group or another, it's not a genre's fault. They've just put alot of professional amazing good people out of business when the synth manufacturers wanted more money and saw the demographics needed to accomplish that. Haven't you noticed that all the gear coming out now are either a. workstations or b. hip hop oriented loop based drum pad software/hardware? Any fool with $500 bucks can now buy some software/hardware and walk into Atlantic and say.."Yo I want a production deal ....I make beats!" and Voila ya got the next so and so and he/she will be drivin' around their block in a new Hummer and parking it in projects Housing parking lot!! I've seen with my very own eyes....
In reality...all we can do though is lament..we wanted pandoras box...so they built it...we openened it and now we've got nerve to bitch about it......
"Don't hate the player....Hate the game!!..."
I'm hatin' big time right now!!!!!!!
"you bust your ass to make all the money you can...thinking it solves shit...and then you realize..when and if you get there at all...you got more problems and you missed out on the one thing you can't buy or get back...your life! Spend time with friends and family...You can be broke in other ways too!...."