Once upon a time, music transformed a generation.
The 1960s brought about the creation of a counter culture through the power of music.
Songs meant something back then.
Political and social views were addressed.
Everyday fears were expressed.
Anger was vented and joy was shared.
The result was simple: Good music.
Groups and artists like The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix and The Rolling Stones put their hearts and souls into their songs.
Their music had a message; their songs had value.
Nowadays, the only way to feel that connection is to drink a Pepsi, which is what Britney Spears would want.
Or to buy a Twix because Usher sang about the creamy chocolate goodness in 30 seconds or less.
Music is supposed to be about creating energy and it should make a special connection with listeners.
Greedy corporations, however, feel that the best way to connect is not through the music, but through the image of stars and the wallets of listeners.
In a recent Rolling Stone interview, new “punk” starlet Avril Lavigne was asked who her influences were.
She replied that she was thinking about starting to listen to The Ramones, because she wanted to see “what the big deal was.”
She also went on to admit that she hardly ever buys albums and that she wasn’t really a music listener until recently.
I’ve officially reached the conclusion that this girl is better packaged than most Twinkies.
Today, it’s all about image.
Lavigne looks the part, and therefore is deemed acceptable talent.
It doesn’t matter that the newly crowned punk princess wouldn’t know a Sex Pistol from a water pistol.
Music is now specifically designed and distributed to start trends and make money.
Question: Why does Britney Spears lip sync live shows?
Answer: Because Britney Spears cannot sing.
Her career is based solely on the fact that she has sex appeal, and sex appeal is a trend that sells.
Girls want to look like her, and boys want to be with her.
It’s a simple equation, really.
If the girl can’t sing, teach her to dance and remind her to perform sans bra.
Music is no longer made to send a message or express an emotion.
It’s made to make money, and a rat race to see who can make the most the fastest.
Music is now crammed down the public’s throats in radio rotations in which a popular song can be heard three times an hour.
The rich and selfish who own record labels are more concerned about what commercial their artist can land then how good their album sounds.
Unfortunately, this is the reality of the situation until the flow of money stays in our pockets, and out of the pockets of irresponsible executives who are so blinded by greed and power that they don’t realize we are the ones giving them that power.
Maybe then, music will once again be about creation and energy, not hot pants and Pepsi.
Tim Wiseley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org