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Has pop music not changed since the eighties?

mrfpbmrfpb Posts: 4,481
edited December 2015 in The cake stop
In the car the other day Flashdance came on the radio. My 13 yr old asked if it was a new song, I said "No, it was in the charts when I was a teenager". She said " Oh that's really old" and put her Taylor Swift CD on. I noticed that Taylor Swift didn't sound very different to Flalshdance.

So has pop music not moved on in thirty years? If a song from the Fifties was played on Radio 1 in 1985 it would have stuck out like a sore thumb. Even songs from the seventies would have stood out as "old" in the Eighties.
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  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 14,204
    Stock, Aitken & Waterman. Simon Cowell and the ilk.
    Blame them.
    I can't, they are just cashing in. It is the people buying it to blame.
    i.e. the general public.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • Stock, Aitken & Waterman. Simon Cowell and the ilk.
    Blame them.
    I can't, they are just cashing in. It is the people buying it to blame.
    i.e. the general public.

    That. They've found a formula and continue to milk it to death.
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  • MatthewfalleMatthewfalle Posts: 17,380
    Yes.
    Postby team47b » Sun Jun 28, 2015 11:53 am

    De Sisti wrote:
    This is one of the silliest threads I've come across. :lol:

    Recognition at last Matthew, well done!, a justified honour :D
    smithy21 wrote:

    He's right you know.
  • ballysmateballysmate Posts: 14,790
    I posted this some time back and nothing has happened to change my mind.
    For me, the 80s were the decade when music started its slow lingering death. 90s were pretty dull and as for the outpourings since the millennium, Simon Cowell should be tried for murder. But there again I freely admit to being an 'old fart'.
  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 14,204
    edited November 2015
    It really comes down to recording technology. HiFi multitrack recording started in the early 70s and by the early 80s digital mastering and digital multitrack started to appear. That means the quality of a recording made from about 75 onwards sounds just like modern recordings quality wise. So today a 20 year old recording sounds new whereas in the 80s a 20 year old recording like early Beatles stuff was recorded live to stereo so the production is terrible. A song from the 50s was recorded in mono. There's been no improvement in the recording quality for decades as it exceeded the human ear in the 80s. Since then the technological improvement has been all about convenience. The last record I played bass on was recorded using Audacity in the singers house and then the tracks were emailed to Sony for mastering. The first one I ever recorded (back in the 80s) required two months of studio time and cost a fortune. But the production quality is the same on both as both were mastered digitally.
    Mono does not equal inferior.
    Technology can be good but it is not the be all.

    Edit:- One of my favourite recordings - The Allman Brothers At Filmore East. It is stereo but it was recorded in 1971. I doubt modern technology would make it sound better. Some sound engineer may argue but it is all about the feeling and getting your feet moving.
    I do not decry new musicians. I decry manufactured "music".
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • ballysmateballysmate Posts: 14,790
    It really comes down to recording technology. HiFi multitrack recording started in the early 70s and by the early 80s digital mastering and digital multitrack started to appear. That means the quality of a recording made from about 75 onwards sounds just like modern recordings quality wise. So today a 20 year old recording sounds new whereas in the 80s a 20 year old recording like early Beatles stuff was recorded live to stereo so the production is terrible. A song from the 50s was recorded in mono. There's been no improvement in the recording quality for decades as it exceeded the human ear in the 80s. Since then the technological improvement has been all about convenience. The last record I played bass on was recorded using Audacity in the singers house and then the tracks were emailed to Sony for mastering. The first one I ever recorded (back in the 80s) required two months of studio time and cost a fortune. But the production quality is the same on both as both were mastered digitally.
    Mono does not equal inferior.
    Technology can be good but it is not the be all.

    Technology can't make a bad song good. Same applies to film.
    Nowadays it appears that film producers are willing to spend $100m on CGI and special effects and then spend $10 on a script or screenplay.
  • awaveyawavey Posts: 2,368

    Technology can't make a bad song good. Same applies to film.
    Nowadays it appears that film producers are willing to spend $100m on CGI and special effects and then spend $10 on a script or screenplay.

    autotune ? the song maybe complete dirge but seemingly anyone these days can string a few notes together and gets hailed as a popstar.
  • ballysmateballysmate Posts: 14,790
    My missus sits and watches the X Factor and I think, "Have the people of Britain had their ears chopped off. And please God, chop mine off!"
  • ballysmateballysmate Posts: 14,790
    You're missing the point. The reason why a lot of today's pop music sounds like stuff from 20 years ago is that today's pop musicians hear music from back to about the early 70s and are influenced by it. If you listen to music from before that the recording quality makes it sound old so it is automatically deemed inferior by the casual listener. Listen to any commercial radio station or any streaming service and you will hear music back to about the early 70s with maybe a smattering of late 60s folk. That's why pop music sounds the same. Previously recording tech improved so fast that a 10 year old recording sounded old so didn't get airplay so new musicians only heard relatively new material.


    Music by Cream, Hendrix, Peter Green and the Blues greats inferior? Yeah right. :wink:
  • finchyfinchy Posts: 6,689
    My missus sits and watches the X Factor

    Reasonable grounds for divorce there.
  • ballysmateballysmate Posts: 14,790
    My missus sits and watches the X Factor

    Reasonable grounds for divorce there.

    And the f*cking dancing. And the jungle shite. That's why you find me on here so much. :lol:
  • finchyfinchy Posts: 6,689
    My missus sits and watches the X Factor

    Reasonable grounds for divorce there.

    And the f*cking dancing. And the jungle shite. That's why you find me on here so much. :lol:

    Do you ever consider introducing a hammer to your TV screen?
  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 14,204
    You're missing the point. The reason why a lot of today's pop music sounds like stuff from 20 years ago is that today's pop musicians hear music from back to about the early 70s and are influenced by it. If you listen to music from before that the recording quality makes it sound old so it is automatically deemed inferior by the casual listener. Listen to any commercial radio station or any streaming service and you will hear music back to about the early 70s with maybe a smattering of late 60s folk. That's why pop music sounds the same. Previously recording tech improved so fast that a 10 year old recording sounded old so didn't get airplay so new musicians only heard relatively new material.


    Music by Cream, Hendrix, Peter Green and the Blues greats inferior? Yeah right. :wink:
    I didn't say it was inferior. I said that because of the inferior quality of the recording it appears inferior to the young listener and radio programmers don't like the low-fi sound so tend not to play it. If the kids don't hear it they won't be influenced by it stylistically.
    Quality recordings from the 50s.
    http://www.hdtracks.co.uk/best-hi-res-of-the-50s
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 23,471 Lives Here
    When I were a lad my granddad used to say all modern music sounded the same. I thought he was just being a curmudgeonly old git. What does that make us?
  • There was a huge change in the middle but there seems to be some retrogression. I didn't know the new Take That song was them. Thought it was Soft Cell or something like that. There's a real difference in production values but I had an 80's playlist on recently and a lot of it felt quite modern, or old, or no different, if you follow ;)
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  • mrfpbmrfpb Posts: 4,481
    I think the Eighties marked the decline of the single as the CD format made them expensive and since the internet took off album sales are way down, so record companies have no desire to invest lots of time and money in artists developing new styles of music and as they did with Sgt Pepper or Good Vibrations in the 60's.

    It’s interesting that a reissue of the Beatles 1 made it to no.4 in the album chart this week, so they are clearly still popular.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 52,734 Lives Here
    Pop music is cyclical and late '80s early '90s style is quite popular right now.

    I'd suggest if you listened to the tedium that is EDM you wouldn't find much resemblance to '80s music and that stuff dominates the charts.
  • Inane pop music will be here for a long time. It's made to a formula, and it's here because it works. Same with boy bands. They come around again and again because the fans (teenage girls mainly) love them.
    There is now more music around than ever. Prog rock and electronica, for example is going through a renaissance. It's cheaper to make and distribute than ever before. Bands don't really need record deals any more, so they might not make any money, but that doesn't stop creativity.
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  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 23,471 Lives Here
    EDM = Electric Death Metal? Ear Damaging Mashups? Extremely Dire Music? Equally Dangerous Monologues?
  • gingamangingaman Posts: 576
    Electro-discharge machining, Veronese
  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 23,471 Lives Here
    Electro-discharge machining, Veronese
    That sounds like the name for some form of torture, maybe it is.
  • chris_basschris_bass Posts: 4,913
    My missus sits and watches the X Factor

    Reasonable grounds for divorce there.

    And the f*cking dancing. And the jungle shite. That's why you find me on here so much. :lol:

    Do you ever consider introducing a hammer to your TV screen?

    Here you go:
    hammer-time.png#geekosystem
    www.conjunctivitis.com - a site for sore eyes
  • In answer to the OP No.

    I remember winning a Bootsy Collins album and saying to my dad "I can't believe I've won first prize" to which my dad said "I can't believe that is first prize, what was the last one"?

    I feel I would say the same today.
    Tail end Charlie

    The above post may contain traces of sarcasm or/and bullsh*t.
  • motogullmotogull Posts: 319
    This is the age of the bland. Bill Hicks warned of this years ago. As a parent, I want to dismayed by my kids liking rebellious or ground breaking stuff but its not happening.

    Haven't seen live music for over 20 years until I saw a blues band the other night. It was ace. It was alive.
  • apreadingapreading Posts: 4,532
    Just tonight I was lamenting the passing of the album (or LP)...

    In the old days of tapes or vinyl, while you could skip tracks you tended not to and played the complete work. This meant that bands (yeah - BANDS, where you actually saw and knew who was playing the other instruments as well as the singers!!) agonised over the order of tracks and meant that while an album might start off with a couple of standout tracks, often after repeated plays there were other gems which didnt grab you straight away but grew on you and often became your long term favourites.

    With CDs we just skipped over the tracks that didnt grab us within the first few seconds.

    Nowadays wmany e dont even download the ones which dont get into the charts.

    Even better (sometimes) were the 'concept albums' where the whole thing was an exquisite body of work presented in a linear composition.
  • FatTedFatTed Posts: 1,205
    when it first came out I played Dark side of the moon to my old man, he said I bet you wont be playing that in 20 years, true I no longer can be bothered with vinyl, but I still listen to the album.
  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 14,204
    This may go some way to explain the situation.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5pidokakU4I
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • bompingtonbompington Posts: 7,639
    I didn't say it was inferior. I said that because of the inferior quality of the recording it appears inferior to the young listener and radio programmers don't like the low-fi sound so tend not to play it. If the kids don't hear it they won't be influenced by it stylistically.
    But most kids these days listen to low quality MP3s on low quality phones with low quality earphones (a lot of Bomp Jr's stuff is ripped off youtube, and he's a serious muso) so I'm not sure that is true. I would say it's more due to the cyclical nature of musical fads, it's just that the 80s is now old enough to be quaint and interesting. Given that 90s dance music is about the last time anything remotely new happened in popular music, I'm not sure what will happen in a few years when we start recycling the recycled music - presumably there'll be a 20s take on the 90s Britpop take on the 60s, and so on.
    I actually find that da youth these days have a much greater appreciation of old stuff than we used to in my day - to me as a young teenager in the 70s the Beatles were old hat, despite the fact that I remember them being in the charts, and anything earlier than that was almost literally prehistoric: but I regularly come across kids listening to Clapton, Marley, Led Zep, Lynyrd Skynyrd - although there are downsides to download culture, it has made a much wider selection of music available to more people.
  • mrfpbmrfpb Posts: 4,481
    I really don't think recording quality accounts for the difference say between glam rock/prog rock of the early 70s and the Boffin+Diva duos (Yazoo, Soft Cell, Pet Shop Boys) that dominated the early eighties, and seem to have set the template for pop music since.

    You can plot a line through Pyschadelia/Glam/Disco/Electro pop, but it just seems to grind to a halt c.1985.
  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 14,204
    I also think that supply is outstripping demand.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
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