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When is technical ability/obsession a hindrance to our musical creation?


Makzimia
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I'll even put in a good word for pitch correction. Since having the freedom to add pitch correction if needed, I sing in a much more free, relaxed, and "daring" way, because I know if I do something cool except for a couple of notes, I can fix the notes and retain the good stuff. That too takes away the human element - those couple of clams - but in return, being more free while singing amplifies the human element.

 

Imagine if Michael Jackson had said that having bits of steel in the soles and heels of his shoes and the magnets under the stage really helps with the lean move. And when the guys underneath move the magnets backwards it makes the moon walk so much easier. Dancing with complete abandon and confidence is no problem knowing that if anything starts to get out of control the magnets will keep it together.

 

Would it matter very much anymore? Should anyone still be impressed?

 

It seems theres all sorts of hullabaloo if someone gets caught photoshopping their waistline. But the rough equivalent is done all the time with modern music production.

 

Authenticity matters in practically every other art more than it does in music, especially modern music production. Way more in some cases.

 

Why? :confused2:

 

Anything goes until somebody claims they did the vocals and it was actually someone else. Gasp. AHA! :cop:sm-wildman

 

 

Edited by RockViolin
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Authenticity matters in practically every other art more than it does in music, especially modern music production. Way more in some cases.

 

Why? :confused2:

 

 

 

OK, I'll take a stab at it.

 

Because music, more than any other art other than perhaps film/movies, became the art with the most golden eggs with the advent of the recording. And as the years went by, the getting of the golden egg became ever more the primary goal, by whatever means was necessary. So all sorts of tools and technics were developed, not just for gathering golden eggs, or polishing them, but for turning silver, yellow, blue, even green eggs into golden ones. Or close enough to fool the average golden egg collector. And the end justifies the means.

 

Many golden eggs have been made, or fabricated and then sold. The people who can tell the difference between solid gold and gold paint, gem version and the cubic zirconia, are about as rare as the gem version itself. And to everyone else, the golden eggs layed by the goose itself are nothing special anymore, really. The world is awash with those that are, one way or another, close enough as far as they can tell.

 

And now they can make their own anyway, even though they often are nowhere near a goose let alone are a goose themselves, and present them for the world to admire. Eggs everywhere.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by RockViolin
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The vocals for C.C.Music Factory, Black Box and a few other groups were done by Martha Wash and they had a model pretending to sing the vocals on the videos and their shows.

 

Martha was in "Two Tons Of Fun" and "The Weather Girls" and doesn't have a slim, sexy model look (but what a voice!!!).

 

I suspect there is a lot more of that going on as well.

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We could have a painter use a machine with a robot arm to paint. In fact, armed with a tablet, that painter could copy and paste the brushstrokes over specific areas. This would still be painting, wouldn't it? And if we made a mistake, we could edit that or hit at least 32 layers of "undo".

 

And we would applaud this and say that the painting was just as emotionally honest as one painted in the manner above, wouldn't we?

 

Wouldn't we?

 

Maybe somebody is a paralyzed artistic genius. Tools are tools.

 

Erase and undo aren't the problem. very-happy.png.197c47f720636f02390cc2b0a33804da.png' alt='smiley-veryhappy'>

 

If only more people knew where to find them. :D

 

I would not applaud if I could tell, found out, or knew in advance that the machine was programmed to correct what had been predetermined to be a likely weak stroke. I would not applaud I say. I would not applaud a painting done in this way.

 

The tools can be used in different ways. Using them to try make up for artistry and expertise on the human side rather than to display it in the interest of expediency and or budget is no fad, I'm afraid. Nor is being lazy. It's easier to get somebody to slave over a long list of edits than it is to tell everybody to go practice, or to have them bring it with the right notes, right feel, and in tune in the first place.

 

I heard someone, Carlton? once did 60 some odd takes for a guitar solo on a Steely Dan tune. Going for that real gold you know. I seriously doubt if such a thing even comes close to happening anymore. We just slap those suckers together. Wash, rinse, and repeat. :D2

 

 

 

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The green screening of this years production of The Nutcracker for DVD. All leaps will be higher, pirouettes will be faster and tighter, etc. The ballerinas will be prettier too, which is what is from now on most important because we've mostly got the other stuff covered. Dancers no longer have to be in time with some antiquated, expensive orchestra either. No coughs or chair squeaks here, and the music is programmed and synced to fit perfectly. No longer are we limited to what people can actually do, or manage to do under the stress of performance, so it's better than perfect, actually.

 

 

 

Would you buy it?

 

 

Would you?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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With almost any technology there is the use and the abuse.

 

I've seen movies where the movie serves the technology and others were the technology serves the plot.

 

And I've heard recordings that serve the technology and others were the technology serves the music.

 

I don't think the tools are the fault, sometimes it's the people using them. But in the right hands the tools can make something beautiful

 

Insights and insights by Notes

 

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I think we're barking up the same tree, Ken.

 

One of us is preaching and t'uther is the choir. :cool3:

 

My bead has never been on the tools, iirc. It's on the choices that are made regarding their use.

 

FWIW I think White Zombie's album, Astrocreep 2000 is a great album. From what I've heard, they weren't around each other much for that recording. It can be done, I suppose.

 

It's funny, I'm a classically trained musician, blah blah...Rob Zombie knows about four notes give or take, and sometimes he can sing 2 or maybe 3 of those notes in tune. Doesn't bother me much if at all. At least he isn't trying to fool anyone with some silly robot sound. Or by suddenly being far more consistently in tune than is characteristic of him, with nary a voice lesson or a scale or 2 involved.

 

But anyway, all things considered, I'm thinking, what hath man wrought?

 

And that music's best days for the most part, are in the past.

 

Easily. :cry:

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What I do not understand, and someone please correct me here:

 

The Beatles were well known, (Sir George Martin) for experimenting with sound and technique? Were they too obsessed with technology? I mean they used technology at the time but not a DAW.:D

 

Like Photoshop, I think there is a stigma affiliated with DAW. It's like if you spend time at a computer someone may say, "He loves computers." But You are actually doing something in the computer which would not make a difference if the same process was being done on a different domain.

 

Which is why I believe if computers were not involved, people may have a different opinion. The term technical seemed closely aligned with tools, than the actual process. I see it as the same process being done differently with alternative methods.

 

 

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Let me step back in here and explain myself a little clearer. Let's say I want to record an acoustic guitar for example. The player plays in time, it's a great recording, good mic, good pre-amp, but OH NO, there's a scratchy sound, fret noise, OH NO!!!. I can pull it out with something like Izotope's RX. But, should I? does it REALLY matter... it never used to. I would argue, and rightfully, IMHO, removing all those sorts of elements is why we are hungry for that analog sound. It was warm and unbridled, because some tech nerd hadn't worked out how to remove all reality out of music :).

 

Just my .02 on it.

 

Tony

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Let me step back in here and explain myself a little clearer. Let's say I want to record an acoustic guitar for example. The player plays in time, it's a great recording, good mic, good pre-amp, but OH NO, there's a scratchy sound, fret noise, OH NO!!!. I can pull it out with something like Izotope's RX. But, should I? does it REALLY matter... it never used to. I would argue, and rightfully, IMHO, removing all those sorts of elements is why we are hungry for that analog sound. It was warm and unbridled, because some tech nerd hadn't worked out how to remove all reality out of music :).

 

Just my .02 on it.

 

 

This has nothing to do with technology or technicality.

This is simply a matter of preference.

 

I'll agree that technology and or DAW makes this process easier and more ubiquitous and very tempting.

 

But assuming someone did the take over, they re-record the guitar a million times, each time they discover an error, they go back and do the take.

 

Will this make a difference if they did not edit in a computer?

 

Your premise is more about people being obsessed with getting it right but to me this is not about technology.

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What I do not understand, and someone please correct me here:

 

The Beatles were well known, (Sir George Martin) for experimenting with sound and technique? Were they too obsessed with technology? I mean they used technology at the time but not a DAW.:D

 

Like Photoshop, I think there is a stigma affiliated with DAW. It's like if you spend time at a computer someone may say, "He loves computers." But You are actually doing something in the computer which would not make a difference if the same process was being done on a different domain.

 

Which is why I believe if computers were not involved, people may have a different opinion. The term technical seemed closely aligned with tools, than the actual process. I see it as the same process being done differently with alternative methods.

 

 

You can cook a steak on a grill, in a skillet, or in the microwave. Will it taste the same each way? Which one would you want to eat?

 

Like more than a few chefs, I think it worries some musicians...the tendency to copy /paste a song together rather than to actually play the respective parts for instance. There can be elements of flow, and phrasing that are compromised when a patchwork is made of things. Maybe the singer turns the phrase differently in the second verse. It might work to just copy paste the guitar from the first verse, but the interaction that might occur between the guitar and voice the 2nd time is negated that way.

 

And to do things that way maybe is to say that one way is too much work and and not worth the effort, and nobody will know the difference anyway. A possibility for some actual magic to occur is obliterated in the name of convenience.

Eventually fewer and fewer people will even be capable of recording a guitar part without this crutch and that brace. It certainly seems possible to me, anyway.

 

While I did say that tools are tools, some are more tempting to abuse than others and foster a certain type of laziness IMO. And the paralyzed artistic genius has some warrant to robotic assistance while the able bodied one, it seems to me, does not.

 

 

The world of music is beginning to look like a world full of easy make, GMO, TV dinners.

 

 

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You can cook a steak on a grill, in a skillet, or in the microwave. Will it taste the same each way? Which one would you want to eat?

 

Like more than a few chefs, I think it worries some musicians...the tendency to copy /paste a song together rather than to actually play the respective parts for instance. There can be elements of flow, and phrasing that are compromised when a patchwork is made of things. Maybe the singer turns the phrase differently in the second verse. It might work to just copy paste the guitar from the first verse, but the interaction that might occur between the guitar and voice the 2nd time is negated that way.

 

And to do things that way maybe is to say that one way is too much work and and not worth the effort, and nobody will know the difference anyway. A possibility for some actual magic to occur is obliterated in the name of convenience.

Eventually fewer and fewer people will even be capable of recording a guitar part without this crutch and that brace. It certainly seems possible to me, anyway.

 

While I did say that tools are tools, some are more tempting to abuse than others and foster a certain type of laziness IMO. And the paralyzed artistic genius has some warrant to robotic assistance while the able bodied one, it seems to me, does not.

 

 

The world of music is beginning to look like a world full of easy make, GMO, TV dinners.

 

 

You make very interesting and compelling points.

However, I am more focused on the results of the user or engineer.

 

If I sing the part 200 times until I get it right or I copy and paste the part until it's right will there make a difference if the results are the same?

 

Results as in the production objectives of the project.

 

Personally I would rather never record on computers but I do not have the resources to do things the way I would love to.

 

Because of this, my primary objective when recording a piece of music is to try to get it to sound as if everything was done by a human being.

 

For example I try to play entire parts of a song rather than playing a piece of it and then copying and pasting. I believe if I do this I can get a more human feel by playing the entire part.

 

 

But in defense of those who rely on technology I think is the same thing if the results are the same. In my opinion it does not matter how something was recorded if the results are the same.

 

Times have changed and most people do not have the luxury of time and we live in a world of immediacy I don't think anybody is going to abandon an easier way and instead doing something repetitively.

 

It's a matter of results at least for me.

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You make very interesting and compelling points.

However, I am more focused on the results of the user or engineer.

 

If I sing the part 200 times until I get it right or I copy and paste the part until it's right will there make a difference if the results are the same?

 

Results as in the production objectives of the project.

 

Personally I would rather never record on computers but I do not have the resources to do things the way I would love to.

 

Because of this, my primary objective when recording a piece of music is to try to get it to sound as if everything was done by a human being.

 

For example I try to play entire parts of a song rather than playing a piece of it and then copying and pasting. I believe if I do this I can get a more human feel by playing the entire part.

 

 

But in defense of those who rely on technology I think is the same thing if the results are the same. In my opinion it does not matter how something was recorded if the results are the same.

 

Times have changed and most people do not have the luxury of time and we live in a world of immediacy I don't think anybody is going to abandon an easier way and instead doing something repetitively.

 

It's a matter of results at least for me.

 

Thanks. :)

 

Well, water boiled in a microwave makes tea as well as water boiled in a tea pot. The result is the same. There are other foods, potatoes for instance, the microwave maybe doesn't yield a result exactly the same as boiling, or baking but it can be acceptable if done right. Sometimes a bit of both is the answer. But, melted butter is melted butter, and how it got that way doesn't really matter very much. The result is the same.

 

 

 

So, as is often the case, it depends.

Edited by RockViolin
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Fairly related.

 

I haven't watched TV since the 1980s - no cable, no antenna, no digital converter. I've never seen Simpsons, Cheers, Seinfeld, Sopranos, Taxi, MASH, Sex in the City, Thrones and I haven't seen a Macy's Day Parade since perhaps 1980 or so.

 

This Thanksgiving we got a gig at a nursing home. We don't pursue those gigs, but the manager found us on the Internet, liked us and offered it to us. We don't turn down gigs that we think we could do a good job on either.

 

So while setting up, on the huuuuuuge screen TV is the Macy's T-Day Parade. I see dancers and singers lip syncing to a recorded vocal/music track. Some without mics and no place to hide a body mic, and some with mics but obviously only for a prop.

 

I've played in a lot of bands where the background singers share a mic, looking at each other's lips so we can sync our consonants together. I know when someone is lip syncing because the mouth and the consonants are out of sync. And they were not just delayed, but sometimes ahead, sometimes behind in the same line of the song. Even stars who can sing like Gwen Stefani were just pretending.

 

Is this what entertainment has evolved to? The technology used to put pretty people out there dancing and pretending to sing with completely recorded sound tracks? Not one voice or instrument live?

 

Well I for one don't care if I ever see another Macy's T-Day parade again. I guess it's OK for the masses, because people watch it, but I don't want to see them pretending to sing.

 

I know it's done in the movies, and back in the Black & White TV days the stars would come on American Bandstand and lip-sync their songs, but the pantomime I saw was done in front of a live audience, and to me that makes a difference.

 

And what about the idea of a parade? Did the Broadway acts and featured Stars participate in the entire parade? Or did they just come out, interrupting the parade to pretend they are singing?

 

I don't meant to be extremely negative here, because I'm sure that it works for a lot of people, and many would prefer it that way, but basically, it's not my 'cup of tea' and I don't care to watch that pretending.

 

Insights and incites by Notes

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I watched the parade for a short time and turned it off - because they weren't showing the parade! They were interviewing this person and that person about their latest show on the network, etc. It was just one big advertisement. We never even saw the lip-syncing part as they just kept on talking about what a great season it was on this network.

Edited by Mandolin Picker
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Yeah. It's OK as a shortcut for time consuming, simple processes was the point. As the task gets more complex and refined, not so much. Sometimes process does matter. And if someone's music is minimalist, there may not be much there that would show the difference if it was made one way or another.

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Fairly related.

 

I haven't watched TV since the 1980s - no cable, no antenna, no digital converter. I've never seen Simpsons, Cheers, Seinfeld, Sopranos, Taxi, MASH, Sex in the City, Thrones and I haven't seen a Macy's Day Parade since perhaps 1980 or so.

 

This Thanksgiving we got a gig at a nursing home. We don't pursue those gigs, but the manager found us on the Internet, liked us and offered it to us. We don't turn down gigs that we think we could do a good job on either.

 

So while setting up, on the huuuuuuge screen TV is the Macy's T-Day Parade. I see dancers and singers lip syncing to a recorded vocal/music track. Some without mics and no place to hide a body mic, and some with mics but obviously only for a prop.

 

I've played in a lot of bands where the background singers share a mic, looking at each other's lips so we can sync our consonants together. I know when someone is lip syncing because the mouth and the consonants are out of sync. And they were not just delayed, but sometimes ahead, sometimes behind in the same line of the song. Even stars who can sing like Gwen Stefani were just pretending.

 

Is this what entertainment has evolved to? The technology used to put pretty people out there dancing and pretending to sing with completely recorded sound tracks? Not one voice or instrument live?

 

Well I for one don't care if I ever see another Macy's T-Day parade again. I guess it's OK for the masses, because people watch it, but I don't want to see them pretending to sing.

 

I know it's done in the movies, and back in the Black & White TV days the stars would come on American Bandstand and lip-sync their songs, but the pantomime I saw was done in front of a live audience, and to me that makes a difference.

 

And what about the idea of a parade? Did the Broadway acts and featured Stars participate in the entire parade? Or did they just come out, interrupting the parade to pretend they are singing?

 

I don't meant to be extremely negative here, because I'm sure that it works for a lot of people, and many would prefer it that way, but basically, it's not my 'cup of tea' and I don't care to watch that pretending.

 

Insights and incites by Notes

 

I saw about 10 seconds of it and it was the Goo Goo Dolls, who appeared to me to be actually performing the music.

 

Laugh tracks, fake applause, 'musicians' who would likely be unlistenable without the modern tools that make them presentable in some fashion... faking it for the performance. - It may be nothing new, but it seems to be getting worse.

 

Humanity gets what it deserves. Maybe the latest technology is the chance to rush headlong into the making of the dust bowl.

 

Or maybe it has heavily compromised/devalued an Art.

 

It's the same blindness either way, IMO.

 

To circle around to topic, and hopefully sum it up from here, perfecting isn't really a problem, it's a good thing. But when it comes cheaply and easily, is about minutae at the cost of the whole and mostly comes from the other side of the glass I think it is probably not for the greater good in the long term. The current idea of perfect tends to make people and their art more the same instead of celebrating their differences and what is unique it seems to me. Wrong Way.

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by RockViolin
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I didn't see anybody performing life, although they often looked like it.

 

Like I said, I grew up in bands where we shared a mic for background singing and you looked at each others lips to articulate at the same time. And if you watch the lips out of sync with the consonants at times, but not always, you know they are faking it.

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Do we care too much how music is technically?

 

 

I've always thought so, but back when we were using tape (I'm still using tape) we did take after take until it was "Right" or until everyone was so tired it was considered close enough. On the other hand, some of the best albums were live.

 

Edited by Beck
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I've always thought so, but back when we were using tape (I'm still using tape) we did take after take until it was "Right" or until everyone was so tired it was considered close enough. On the other hand, some of the best albums were live.

 

I think a lot of us come from this background and shifted to various hybrid or total ITB setups. My take on recording remains, write it, practice it, record it. A lot of the me me me generation think practicing at the time they perform or record is totally in order. And since we have all this cool stuff, can't we just fix it. Sadly, a lot of producers and engineers are more than happy to fix it after. I admit I have tried to go that way a few times, it never works well for me though, I just cringe at it. I also don't believe removing every pop and squeak and breath, within reason, is a great thing.

 

When the lowest common denominator rules the roost, we've got issues.

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If a piece of music moves me' date=' I honestly don`t care if it was lined up to the grid or not. I don`t care about the players chops, or the engineering skills, etc... if it moves me on some emotional level than I`m happy. I think we`re over thinking things... [/quote']

 

I don't think I've been moved much in the twenty-first century. Not by music that was created in this century. Some Adelle, a bit of Winehouse, and a young bluegrass lass that plays a mean mandolin are about it. None of them probably needed much help from the grid, AT etc, I'm willing to bet. I of course have missed some good stuff somewhere. I hope.

 

I would simply add that if a piece of music isn't moving, many of the things that commonly get fixed/perfected in the mix won't help much. You can remove a wart or two, but, you know... smearing lipstick on a pig.

 

Chops may or may not be behind the song, but shouldn't they to rise to the level necessary from the people calling themselves musicians at least? It's highly unlikely I'll drop a tear or pump a fist if they don't, or if I can tell that the gear had to come to the rescue over and over again.

 

(Nirvana, which I didn't dig, wasn't about chops per se, but I'll grant that there was enough there to get their point across, such as it was.) :D

 

Is shaking your booty to a beat that's been locked an emotional response? Or is it mostly a physical one? OK, now I might be over thinking a bit. :lol:

 

 

 

I think music as art that makes it to the public was far better off when it was the province of the musical. A little cheating here and there to help them in their cause is one thing, I suppose. For everybody else, I think the point of diminishing returns arrives rather quickly, though these days that is of no concern at the bank.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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