Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Being familiar with old music vs. old movies

This is a great article:
Also, great articles can be found here so please click (which gives me my revenue):

The article is by Paul Shirley. If no one knows who he is, he spent the last 6 or 7 years on 15 different professional basketball temas ranging from defunct minor league basketball teams in Bismark, North Dakota and Idaho to Siberia, Greece, and 3 or 4 s...tints on professional basketball teams as the 12th man where he's scored a total of 37 pointsin his entire career. he started blogging from the bench out of boredom about 4 years ago and became an instant internet sensation and has his own best-selling book about being on the fringes of fame. anyway, that's a long intro and he's not talking about basketball, but check out paul shirley sometime for some interesting reading.

In the above-mentioned article he talks about music (he's been writing about that a lot lately) and makes the case that the Beatles can't possibly be experienced by today's generation the same way as it was for people who grew up during that time, simply because we didn't experience it historically. He says that therefore: "I understand that The Beatles are culturally significant and important in the historical progression of rock music. And I understand that they're talented. But unless you were locked in a time capsule like Brendan Fraser in "Blast From the Past," they cannot be your favorite band. If you're younger than 50 and you do make such a claim, you're either (A) trying to impress someone with what you think will be received as good taste, or (B) woefully behind in your consumption of music. If it's A, I'm disappointed in you. If it's B, there's hope -- we only have to help you find the good stuff"

I think this is absolutely true. One example that comes to mind is that a lot of people in the 7th grade went through a sudden Beatles phase because the "cool kids" liked the Beatles and 7th grade is a most contagious time for peer pressure. I think with music, it is culturally unacceptable to be unfamiliar with a number of bands that have been around since before we were born. I didn't know who Niel Young was once when I was about 20 and people found that very strange. A couple years later I got blank stares from my friends when I expressed to them as we came across the Val Kilmer biobic "The Doors" on TV, that I had no idea who that band was. In the meantime, I am moderately sure I have never listened to anything by the Rolling Stones, if only by accident and I know only a handful of songs by Bob Dylan, mostly through the TV or music soundtracks they have appeared on. In the meantime, my head is full with bands that are currently on the radio.

At the same time, I think with movies it's the exact opposite. There's absolutely no shame in not seeing any film before 1970 and most people are very loosely familiar with films before 1960. I wonder why that is.

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