Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Day 18!: A Whimsical Look at Music Genres (from my perspective)

The music world explodes with an insane amount of variety. Each category has a subcategory, and some categories can't be explained. I personally enjoy pop, dance, techno/trance, some folk, some New Age, and some Rock. And rap, too, if it's tasteful and especially if it's Lecrae (if that name means nothing to you, youtube him asap; he's only the best Christian rapper to breathe on this earth). So, here are some genres I've thought of, and the kind of mood they envelope, the environment they can usually be heard, and/or the type of people I associate them with. DISCLAIMER: These are all my humorous opinions, and are not to be taken seriously, unless you find them seriously funny.

POP- "Oh baby, baby, how was I supposed to know..." If you listened to Britney, N'Sync, Backstreet Boys, 98 degrees, you liked 90's pop. How to describe it today, besides whatever is popular? The pop fan: usually listens to that "hit" station, knows all the lyrics by heart, sings his/her heart out in the car with his/her pals or alone, blares their music, ridin' cool with their windows down, and likes fiestas. Party where? Party here! he or she may exclaim. (I'm guilty of being a pop fan)

ROCK- Umm, use of guitars and such. Often wailing electric guitars. Can vary: country rock, hard rock, indie rock... so many options. The rock fan: your grandpa who remembers Woodstock with a fond yet fuzzy memory (he lost his hearing at that event), or your Dad who fondly listens to the 60's and 70's (reliving those higschool years), or your neighbor attempting to jam the next house over. HUSHHHH! No rockin' out after quiet hours! ;)

ELECTRONIC- This genre can be broken down into so many genres, but, overall, I love it, and as you can see, have devoted most of my research to it :)
Dance- Something that makes you want to move, example Cascada, you know, "Cuz everytime we touch I get this feeling..." Generally has a strong bass and awesome beat (yes, I'm biased) and a catchy and often cliche melody line. Think clubs and girls like Kesha jamming out.

-Techno- a "form of electronic dance music," usually has less vocals, more synthesizers, etc.

-House- "Early house music was generally dance-based music characterized by repetitive 4/4 beats, rhythms centered around drum machines,[2] off-beat hi-hat cymbals, and synthesized basslines. While house displayed several characteristics similar to disco music, it was more electronic and minimalistic,[2] and the structured music's focus around a repetitive rhythm was more important than the song itself."
"It proved to be a commercially successful genre and a more mainstream pop-based variation grew increasingly popular. Artists and groups such as Madonna,[2] Janet Jackson,[3] Björk, and C+C Music Factory[2] incorporated the genre into their work. Today, house music remains popular in both clubs and in the mainstream pop scene while still maintaining a strong foothold on underground scenes across the globe." Perhaps this is the REAL club music...hmmm, interesting.

-Trance- perhaps one of my favorite genres/subgenres, "Trance is a genre of electronic dance music that developed in the 1990s in Germany.[5] It is characterized by a tempo of between 110 and 150 beats per minute,[5] repeating melodic phrases,[5] and a musical form that builds up and down throughout a track.[5] It is a combination of many styles of electronic music such as techno,[3] house,[1] pop,[3] chill-out,[3] classical music,[3]:16[4] and film music.[4]" <---now wasn't that fascinating? Also interestingly, much of the dance/techno/trance music comes out of Europe. Sweet stuff. And unlike club music, this is more an acquired taste I believe. Think German raves and discotheques. "Trance employs aural dynamics to a great degree: A characteristic of virtually all trance songs is the soft mid-song breakdown,[3][5] beginning with and occurring after the orchestration is broken down and the rhythm tracks fade out rapidly, leaving the melody and/or atmospherics to stand alone for anywhere from seconds to a few minutes. When vocals are present in trance, they are generally sung by a female with a soaring, operatic voice ranging from mezzo-soprano to soprano, best described as "ethereal female leads floating amongst the synths".[8]" COUNTRY- "take your cat and leave my sweater..." Well, in a nutshell, he's drunk, she's broke, the dog's gone, she left, someone died, and also God bless America. I can only really appreciate this genre in the summer time, or if its combined like country-pop (aka Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood) or country-rock.

INDIE-Indian? Individual? Indescribable? Does anyone even know what this means??? Oh says, "Independent music (often shortened to indie music or indie) is produced independently from major commercial record labels or their subsidiaries, a process that may include an autonomous, Do-It-Yourself approach to recording and publishing. The term indie is sometimes also used to describe a genre (such as indie rock or indie pop); most independent music artists do not fall into a single, defined musical style or genre and usually create music that can be categorized into other genres." That was not very helpful in putting a finger on it, but the fan usually looks like this: Hipster dude listens to obscure band called Saving Tomatoes (probably actually exists), follows his band on twitter and facebook and goes to all their events if possible with his hipster pals, is all proud when he says they're his fave band and no one knows who they are, balls his eyes out when it hits mainstream radio. Examples of "indie" artists:

FOLK- banjos, singing about real life, bands like Iron and Wine/Flogging Molly...not sure if I like them.

CLASSICAL- Mozart, Bach, Beethoven...usually anything really old that instrumental and "boring" though in actuality, quite complex and good for the brain. The fan: Usually older, a music major, or a mobster (they always play loud wailing opera in the poignant scenes)

what?!?! Is this music? I've been told this takes talent, that there's an art to screaming without hurting your vocal chords, but I can't hear a thing that you're saying and it's not that you're whispering either!!!!

METAL- I have no background in this, so here's wiki: "Heavy metal (often referred to simply as metal) is a genre of rock music[1] that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom and in the United States.[2] With roots in blues rock and psychedelic rock, the bands that created heavy metal developed a thick, massive sound, characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. Heavy metal lyrics and performance styles are generally associated with masculinity and machismo.[3]" Hmmm, machismo? Interesting. Bands like Black Sabbath, Metallica, etc. Not my cup of tea.

RAP- Not much singing...lots of words. Awesome beats :) Not so awesome when it's always about "makin' paper," "chasin' da life," or "hookin' up" with "shawty." Also not cool when it's degrading to women by making them purely objects and play things.

REGGAE- "Don't worry, about a ting...cuz every little ting, gonna be alright..." That's all I know about this genre. Bob Marley. That's it quintessentially.

Well, that's all I've got for now. My knowledge is limited, but my opinions not so much :)

Goodnight all!

Dreaming of attending an awesome European trance/techno/house concert one day,

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