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  • Is the Rock Star Dead

    I though this deserved it's own thread.

    How is the health in the whole of the music industry doing. I mean the performers and fans. Is it healthy? Do you really care about the equipment, or do you really care the art of music is surviving and healthy.

    I gather how money is made and distributed has changed. Who gets it etc. But, how many young, middle and old age people still listen and care. How many kids still get squeamish and excited talking about some pop hero.

    Do we have any reliable data or way to track "enthusiasm" and engagement

    If the allure of a star has died, then I fear so will the gear. If not, give the millenials time to get their kids out of the house, bank a few million and some will get involved in high quality equipment again.

    Pure Audio Project Trio 10/Voxativ, Transition Audio 811A Triode monoblocks, First Sound Audio Mark 3SI, Custom TT with Vertere tone arm, Allnic H1201, Denon 103R Midas Saphire with line contact diamond. Mojo Audio CAT Server with remote Illuminati power supply, Mojo Audio Mystique V3 DAC. Akiko Corelli, Custom power strip direct wired to panel with OFC copper wire. Inakustik Ref Air 2404 Speaker cable. Genesis and Inakustik NF2404 Air Interconnects.

  • #2
    If people only value those aspects of culture that are solely produced during their generation, then yes, enthusiasm/engagement and so many more aspects will be endangered as a result (not just audio equipment). The mystique of the icon, rock star, even celebrities in general etc. is now somewhat a thing of the past. Social media, internet culture, etc. has contributed to this for sure. We are oversaturated and desensitized to the "celebrity" as it has become a part of our everyday world - the minute we turn on our phones, the homepage of internet service, Facebook, the news, etc.. Overall, I've seen firsthand that the struggle with modern culture is there a limited enjoyment or even understanding of the music of the past, which is sad to see. Streaming services such as Sirius XM or spotify playlists are now the norm, so the age of 2 channel audio I believe will become more scarce and rare.

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    • #3
      Their are plenty of stars in their respective genres, plenty of people still going to concerts, and plenty of musicians still making boat loads of money. The sky is not falling-fear not.
      SP-10 MKII table with custom power supply designed and built by Peter Noerbaek with an SME 3012R with Dyna XV-1S cartridge, VPI Avenger table with rim drive and JMW -12-3D arrm with Lyra Etna SL cartridge, Zesto Andros 1.2 phono stage, Otari MX-55 tape deck, Ampex 350 repros, ARC Ref 6 pre, ARC Ref 75 amp, NOLA KO speakers with a pair of Def Tech Ref subs, and a pair of JBL 4345 speakers.

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      • #4
        Being a rock star is really over-rated.
        Beyond that glib response, I think your question is whether people identify with "new" music (since most 'rock stars' are now geezers)?
        I'd say, Hell Ya.
        I think the fan-dom may be more fractured among different people and sub-genres than it once was--but you can still identify celebrity artists that younger folks idolize. They may be hip-hop artists, or metal heads, but they still sell recordings (in a sense) and have a big fan base. There's always some new artist I've never heard of, who is huge; the fact that it may not be my cuppa has no bearing on sales or whether others like it. (It was always that way-- there are bands among the 'classic' rock genre that I don't really listen to or favor, though they sold a sh*d load of records).
        There's also this grass roots, work the local club scene thing where a band develops a national following, but it isn't the result of some big flashy campaign. When tickets go on sale, they are sold out.
        Guitar hero stuff isn't what it once was, but music changes; just as I said that, you'll find articles discussing the resurgence of hard rock.
        Time and tide. It's a long cycle. But I don't think music in some form will ever be far from humanity's reach. If it is, then we have more to worry about than the death of Hi-Fi.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Analog21 View Post
          If people only value those aspects of culture that are solely produced during their generation, then yes, enthusiasm/engagement and so many more aspects will be endangered as a result (not just audio equipment). The mystique of the icon, rock star, even celebrities in general etc. is now somewhat a thing of the past. Social media, internet culture, etc. has contributed to this for sure. We are oversaturated and desensitized to the "celebrity" as it has become a part of our everyday world - the minute we turn on our phones, the homepage of internet service, Facebook, the news, etc.. Overall, I've seen firsthand that the struggle with modern culture is there a limited enjoyment or even understanding of the music of the past, which is sad to see. Streaming services such as Sirius XM or spotify playlists are now the norm, so the age of 2 channel audio I believe will become more scarce and rare.
          The world is saturated with "celebrities" who are famous for having money and most of them are a big yawn so who cares. That has nothing to do with audio. Let's separate professional musicians from people who take selfies and post them across social media and generate followings of shallow people. As for your point about modern culture having a limited understanding/enjoyment of music of the past, who cares? They are still listening to music that appeals to them just like I did when I grew up. Doesn't mean they won't change and grow as they age and maybe develop an appreciation for a genre they previously dissed. I used to be strictly a rock and roll guy and now I spend most of my time listening to jazz from the late 1950s through the 1960s.

          You seem to be on a sour grapes rant lately. All is not lost.
          SP-10 MKII table with custom power supply designed and built by Peter Noerbaek with an SME 3012R with Dyna XV-1S cartridge, VPI Avenger table with rim drive and JMW -12-3D arrm with Lyra Etna SL cartridge, Zesto Andros 1.2 phono stage, Otari MX-55 tape deck, Ampex 350 repros, ARC Ref 6 pre, ARC Ref 75 amp, NOLA KO speakers with a pair of Def Tech Ref subs, and a pair of JBL 4345 speakers.

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          • Analog21
            Analog21 commented
            Editing a comment
            Just one thread.. no sour grapes Also harder being in between generations: not in the the traditional over 50 generation of audio nor in the millennial crowd either. I'm not in the generation or age category of most here on this forum, so my viewpoint won't align I'm sure. Also, Having a local group of friends to enjoy audio with and music is important, which I don't have. Those of those who have them that are pretty lucky. Being an audiophile and lover of all kinds of music from all decades is rare, not to mention those who are in their 30s and younger.

        • #6
          The icons of Elvis, the Beatles, Springsteen, Michael Jackson, Aretha, Whitney, etc.. are relics of the past. Not just in music though... How many classic movies from the 50s - 90s were there that were truly iconic, and how many unbelievable and iconic movies have there been in the last decade? It seems something is gone from yesteryear regarding artristy or maybe our celebration if it as a culture??? Very complicated subject.

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          • #7
            Jack White and Mark Lanegan fit the bill....

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            • Rust
              Rust commented
              Editing a comment
              Mark who?

          • #8
            I hope my question was not sour grapes. I'm truly curios to the health of music and it's fans. I was really kind of curious if youg people still get excited about and follow bands as many of us did as youngsters. I remember sitting outside the Mabuhay Gardens or On Broadway many hours before a Punk show I wanted to see. It was a rush. So so cool to get backstage. As others have pointed out, media is so saturating nowadays. It makes me wonder if kids have the focus on any particular groups anymore.
            I myself as I've gotten older have moved on from Rock and punk. Occasionally I will put it on, but generally I listen to classical or jazz. Mostly because it's all new to me which makes it more exciting.
            Pure Audio Project Trio 10/Voxativ, Transition Audio 811A Triode monoblocks, First Sound Audio Mark 3SI, Custom TT with Vertere tone arm, Allnic H1201, Denon 103R Midas Saphire with line contact diamond. Mojo Audio CAT Server with remote Illuminati power supply, Mojo Audio Mystique V3 DAC. Akiko Corelli, Custom power strip direct wired to panel with OFC copper wire. Inakustik Ref Air 2404 Speaker cable. Genesis and Inakustik NF2404 Air Interconnects.

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            • Analog21
              Analog21 commented
              Editing a comment
              I think mep was directing his sour grapes to me, Kingrex. But I agree with you... there are a lot more distractions and things that compete for the younger generation's time. Though music will always be a part of each generation, I don't think it will be the lifeblood and center as it once was for so many of us. It shaped so many of our lives and I don't see it having that same degree of impact now or in the future. Not saying music isn't important now, but the way it certainly was different in prior decades.

          • #9
            A bit off topic: The last time I saw the Stones in concert, "A Bigger Bang Tour" (2005), I was thinking to myself that would be the last time I would see them in concert and probably the last time I would see a mega group like them in concert too. Maybe that's a good thing. The following cartoon resonates with me as being funny and ironic.

            Click image for larger version  Name:	Cartoon - Stones in the 60s.jpg Views:	1 Size:	146.2 KB ID:	93896

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            • Bill Hart
              Bill Hart commented
              Editing a comment
              Are any of them 80 yet?

          • #10
            Originally posted by Analog21 View Post
            The icons of Elvis, the Beatles, Springsteen, Michael Jackson, Aretha, Whitney, etc.. are relics of the past. Not just in music though... How many classic movies from the 50s - 90s were there that were truly iconic, and how many unbelievable and iconic movies have there been in the last decade? It seems something is gone from yesteryear regarding artristy or maybe our celebration if it as a culture??? Very complicated subject.
            Elvis is dead. The Beatles broke up in what, 1970? Some of the others you mentioned are dead, too (though their legacy lives on if they created enduring music).
            Look at artists like Ed Sheehan, or Drake or Taylor Swift or Jay-Z or Beyonce or Rihanna. Some of them have reached sales comparable to any giant artist and can fill stadiums. You might not listen to their music, but somebody does (a lot of somebodys). Maybe Gary Clark, Jr. or Joe Bonamassa are more appealing. Smaller acts, but no less enthusiastic a fan base. If Opeth or Steve Wilson are on tour, I will go hear them.
            Stuff changes.
            I saw Lady GaGa a few years ago-- I was actually impressed by her talent, though I don't own any of her records.
            Phish is out on tour now-- they have a fan base very much like the Dead. And very loyal. Although they haven't sold as many records as some of the other current artists I mentioned in the first line, they are known as a jam band who enjoy the same kind of rep the Dead did back in their heyday. Are they as talented as the Dead? I dunno. I was never really a Dead fan, though I know Jerry Garcia could play. Even when some of the artists you named were still making music, I wasn't really listening to them; I was listening to the Allmans in the Fillmore East era, or Little Feat (when Lowell was alive) or Traffic in the Capaldi-Chris Wood era or Spirit. Bands that weren't quite as big, but were interesting to me. There are a million such bands out there today-- a few might be the icons of tomorrow. I think there are plenty today, even if they aren't ones I worship.

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            • seamonster
              seamonster commented
              Editing a comment
              I just got an e-mail the other day re Steve Wilson in Houston and Dallas in December.

            • Bill Hart
              Bill Hart commented
              Editing a comment
              Yep, saw the tour schedule. No Austin. So, I may use it as an excuse to visit Albert- we shall see.

          • #11
            I caught Greta Van Fleet on the tube the other night. Seemed almost a caricature of a rock band but they were fun to watch. The lead singer needs a little help with dressing like a lead singer showing that pudgy midriff but with a little polish he has those early Robert Plant pipes. It is possible rock isn't quite dead yet.

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            • #12
              I can only tell you that my 19 year old son is just as into the modern progressive rock artist Steven Wilson as one can be. Looks forward to and buys every album, looks forward to and goes to see him on every tour. Knows everything about every bit of music he has ever made. I’ve often said it’s so awesome that he has a “rock god” the way that I did growing up.

              BTW I have gone with him to see Steven Wilson 7 times and the guy and his band are absolutely fantastic. Great stuff.
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              • #13
                I have three kids and they had their favorites but its not the same as it was in the heyday of rock stars. To begin with, the music industry doesn't find, nurture and promote rock acts like they did in the 1960s - 1980s.

                Would or could the Beatles happen today? Instead of album sales its the hit song download. How can music flourish in that type of environment?

                I used to look forward to a new LP. Radio stations would play cuts from new LPs and not just the hit song. Yes, there were always radio stations that did nothing but play the hit but there was a real support system for new music. It seems to be gone now. Or its barely surviving.

                They now promote acts. Thats a serious distinction. Good music requires promoting the people who create the music. They need promotion and support.

                The music industry invested in a band in the expectation of getting some hits, or a popular LP down the road. They still want hits but the competition and expectations are so immediate, how can any band survive?

                To be fair to the music industry, there is less profit in the business and it is the side effect of digital music. We no longer listen to a whole LP side to hear the popular song. We would discover great music listening to the LP but not any more. The CD introduced us to direct access of content and we then got downloads.

                A lot of music died or got left somewhere where no one cares about it. It made the whole thing less profitable and the rock band either turned out a hit or else.

                How the hell can a rock star exist today? Maybe the Beatles could make it because Lennon/McCartney could turn out an amazing list of hits but few others could.

                Technology killed the industry because it made everything so immediate. Music takes time to create, produce and appreciate. There is little time being spent on anything. It is a shame because there are talented people out there.

                I am glad I grew up when I did. It was a great time for popular music.

                Ed
                Life is analog...digital is just samples thereof.
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                • #14
                  Paul Simon just announced his retirement....I'll miss him

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                  • #15
                    I never listened to Simon till I heard him (them) on the Live Sound Design speakers. I was so blown away I came home and started playing his music. That was only a couple years ago. I really like the Songs From The Capeman album. Also Live in Central Park. Too bad. I would love to have seen him play.
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