"Pop" shouldn't be a diry word (rant)

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by LiquidMidnight, Nov 27, 2002.

  1. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    You know, I think that the word "Pop" has become almost a condesending label to put on music. It seems that people say pop like it's a dirty word. I don't think that just because N'Sync and Brittney Spears are pop music, that it should leave a black mark on all music, pop.

    Case in point, to me, pop is anything that is overly catchy, and yes, maybe to a certain degree, marketed. Pop is great when it's backed by substance. AND YES, it is very possible for pop and substance to co-exist. An example would be one of the greatest pop bands of all time, (and yes, they were many things, and a pop band was one of those things they were) The Beatles. The Beatles had an uncanny ability to write a catchy 3 minute rock tune. Yet they had substance. They were pushing envelopes in terms of song structure, production, lyrics ect. The Doors had pop sensability (you can't tell me Light My Fire, LA Women, or Break on Through, are not catchy) And as Punk as they were, you cannot deny the Ramones having a lot of pop hooks.

    Writing hooks is a talent also, and I don't know why if I band can write a cool sounding song that last 3 minutes, why someone should call them a "Pop" band, like it's a bad thing. As much as I love bands like Pink Floyd, Dream Theater, and Hawkwind. I also like The Goo Goo Dolls, Marvelous Three, and Eve6.

    Just had to get that off my mind. What are your opinions?
  2. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    I think your on the mark. People just get disgusted by marketing like American Idol, and Making the "band" part 687, so the word pop is very tarnished. It's also because of the preponderance of shyte out in the world which bears the label. Ruins it for better pop acts.
  3. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    POP is not the problem.

    There's great music being made all the time. With enthusiasm and originality.

    All that gets transmitted via TV is what's visually popular, which when listened to, is not always the best.

    With conglomerately owned Radio stations that mostly sound the same, it's tough to dig the good stuff out. We used to depend on our local DJ. Now they are out of it too.

    Us and our friends have to be our own musical detectives.
  4. moley


    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Well said, LM. I agree.
  5. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    I still say, "Don't blame the industry, blame the consumer."

    I wish I knew the secret to writing a killer hook.
  6. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    Revolution #9???
  7. Max

    Max Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 2000
    Bakersfield, CA
    I agree with LM. I also don't disparage One Hit Wonders and would be content to be one myself. A great song that lots of people like will always be a good things.
  8. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    IMO there is good music and crappy music in every genre.

    I find that the most popular stuff does tend to have the most crap in it (although I do like the odd pop song) because these days, the focus isn't on the music, but the "musician"... Thus, so long as the song has a hook or two, it can be the biggest clichéd piece of crap ever and 90% of the population isn't going to notice.

    I'm not disparaging against bands, so much as "performers" who were probably picked for their looks and 98-pound feminine figures and nothing else.
  9. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    Good point, LM. Thrash jazz is right that there's good music within every genre... people who say things like "rap is crap", or don't think there's any good punk, metal, pop, country, whatever, simply aren't listening.
  10. Nails


    Jun 4, 2000
    Austin, Tejas
    My take is thus:

    Pop is your friend. Most of the bands I like could be classified as pop, even those that aren't well known.

    Mass-produced, marketed, and contrived "pop", is not your friend. I think boy bands and pop princesses hurt the reputation of pop music
  11. Secksay

    Secksay Guest

    Sep 6, 2002
    New York, NY
    if you want to really get into it, pop isn't a musical genre, its just a descriptive word, just as 'loud' music, or 'angry' music.

    pop music is just what is popular at the time. what most people think of as 'pop' is merely a form of rock. nowadays the term pop refers to music that is most likely to be popular, i.e. the simple catchy stuff. The reason why it has negative connotations is because of the mass marketting associated with popular things, whether it's music or clothes or whatever. Since its the 'cool' thing now to be anti-mainstream, its also 'cool' to be anti-pop.
  12. To me pop=bad music. NOT ALL POP mind you, but the problem I have is that I don't want to waste my time sifting through 20 bad pop artist to discover one or two that are actually good musicians.
    Another problem with pop is that nothing stands out. You can't count "The beatles" because back then, pop did not mean the same thing. Back then "pop" meant simply "happy, feel-good music". The beatles were still different from most other bands at the time, therfore they stand out. And standing out is my favorite thing an artist does. Why do we like primus? Well, you can you think of that is the same, even remotely similar to primus? I can't think of anybody, but I might be wrong. So when I see bands that are basically clones of other bands that were, in turn clones of OTHER bands(example: Hoobastank, Incubus) it makes me want destroy my stereo(but if I did that, I couldn't listen to primus!). Everyone think of your favorite band.....now think of another band that plays the same thing. I think most people could not name a band that follows the same style.
    If I hear a good pop song, I'll be sure to listen in joy, but IMO these days they are few and far between.
  13. moley


    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Aww c'mon jazzbo, tell me you weren't singing that for days after you heard it! It's infectious "Number nine, number nine, number nine..." :D
  14. What you name the music makes no difference. It's all about money. That's why it's called The Music Business.
  15. David Watts

    David Watts

    Aug 12, 2002
  16. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    The same goes for all labels... especially NU-metal. Some Nu bands aren't even new... Tool, SOAD... etc. That's why I ignore labels.
  17. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA

  18. This where I think that bands "sell out" musicly. If writing "killer hooks" is a natural extension of your writing....meaning it just happens, then that's awsome. But otherwise, you would "forcing" yourself to come up with something musicly that would appeal to others, rather than writing the kind of music that naturally flows from you. Is that "selling out yourself"? I think so. Is it wrong? No. In order to make money, you have to be "pop"ular with somebody. That's why writers and producers make so much money, because most of the time the can identify and capitalize on the hook, thus making it "pop".
  19. Kids like young Mr. Morse tend to be horrified when it's pointed out that their favorite band makes pop music.

    "Pop" is now associated with candy-coated teen bubble gum music (some of which is nonetheless very catchy and well-written), and pop acts who aren't boy bands or boy-toys are dubbed "alternative" or "modern rock" or whatever. If I hear one more person tell me that Blink-182 or Good Charlotte or New Found Glory make "alternative" rock--a label that used to be associated with people like the Pixies and the Meat Puppets, if one goes way back in the history--I'm gonna scream.

    A recent issue of The Atlantic Monthly contained a very relevant article about this phenomenon in our culture. It can be found here:

  20. Brad Barker

    Brad Barker Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2001
    berkeley, ca
    did you attach the right article?