For those who don’t know, Bob Lefsetz is a music crank who has gotten a voluminous amount of attention lately for his blogged rants on music and the music industry. He’s even a speaker at the NON-Commvention this year in Philadelphia. I subscribe to his newsletter and got this one today with the subject line: Electronic
That caught my eye. What came after seemed like something of a manifesto for electronic music, which Mr. Lefsetz thinks is being ignored by the industry. The thing is, he doesn’t mention what electronic music, what style, what artists or pretty much what anything except for Kanye West who he singles out for some drive-by criticism, and Deadmau5,
But I really want to know. Is he talking about dance floor mavens like Orbital, Paul Van Dyk, or Tiësto? Does he mean pop music like Lady Gaga, K$sha or Madonna, which is all electronic? Does he mean rap music? Is he referring to downtempo dreamers like Ulrich Schnauss, Moby and Sigur Ros, or are we finally going to see the acknowledgement of electronic pioneers like Brian Eno, Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze and Vangelis? I’m sure he’s not talking about avant-garde electronics.
But couldn’t it be more?
During the week of Kraftwerk‘s live album performances in NYC, it seemed like interesting timing.
You can read his complete Electronic blog here. But here’s a few snippets.
That’s not music!
You were wrong on rap, are you gonna be left out of the loop one more time?.
By saying you don’t get it, you’re labeling yourself ignorant. Not only do you have to open your mind, you’ve got to understand, like living organisms, electronic music evolves. If you think what you’re hearing today is going to be the same tomorrow, then you tar all rap with that Puffy/Diddy remake of “Every Breath You Take”. Sure, some electronic is lowest common denominator, but it’s not all!
Electronic music burgeoned without the participation of any of these cynical bottom-feeders. It was all about the music, because at first there was no money. And when the money arrived, it came from none of the usual suspects. Not from recordings, not from radio, not from behemoth promoters but live shows promoted by newbies, lifers in the game. Isn’t it interesting that electronic went live long before the rest of the industry? Isn’t that today’s mantra, that it’s all about the gig? It’s been about the gig in electronic for decades!And electronic musicians know it’s all about the show. You can’t be boring, you’ve got to get the people in the palm of your hand and take them on a trip. Passivity is for pussies.
In a world with few rules, you’ve got to create your own paradigm. And that’s what these electronic musicians have done.
And the public is flocking to them in droves. Not because there was a big publicity campaign, not because the stuff was jammed down their throats, but because it’s infectious, the music makes you move, it’s fun to go to the show, you don’t want to be left out!
Visit the archive: http://lefsetz.com/wordpress/
And I had to love this line: “Who wants to be beholden to something as rigid and ancient as radio?”
Is he talking about us?
~© 2012 John Diliberto ((( echoes )))
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