Does it mater WHO produced the album?

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Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by HC on Sat Oct 04, 2014 3:54 pm

This is another philosophical question that I always want to hear your feedback on. Does it matter who is behind a particular piece of work? For example, do you treat a particular piece of music differently if it's produced by your favorite artist, even if it's not so great at times? Would you have treated that piece of music any differently if it was by someone else?

In other words, if you come upon a BLACK SQUARE painting in a museum, does it matter who produced that painting, and why? Would you feel different about the painting if it was by a Picasso vs. some other unknown local artist? What is it in a piece of music that you really look for, and how does the name association changes your perception?

OK, so yeah, really like six or seven questions here, but you get the main point.
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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by JAM on Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:05 pm

when you know the producer, you place the work into the context of that producer's body of work.  so it's more than just the work itself, it's also where the work fits into a bigger picture, an added dimension to your understanding and evaluation of it.  it may also make you feel differently about the work, since you are thinking of it as coming through that producer's filter.

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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by jkn on Mon Oct 06, 2014 10:29 am

JAM pretty much nailed it. It's hard to separate an album from the artists previous works. And I can like something that isn't quite as good on it's own simply because it's a change - a pivot point - in that artist's career.

What I find difficult is separating an artist's personal life from their music. If I find they do something really ridiculous - suddenly their music starts to fall flat for me also. I have that with acquaintances I know on line - if they make a ton of posts that really annoy me for personal reasons - it's hard to separate that annoyance from what might otherwise be brilliant music.

Should it matter? No.

Does it matter? Yes, because I'm human.

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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by JAM on Mon Oct 06, 2014 11:04 am

yup, jkn. back when there were these weird little places called "record stores" (!), it used to be great to be browsing and hear something being played in-store when you had no idea who it was. oftentimes it's just background music, but i recall a few times being really struck by a particular track/album and loving the moment of finding out who/what it was. that's a case of having no prior knowledge, hearing something "blind" and evaluating it entirely based upon what it is.

a particular time that springs to mind was flicking thru the racks at the sounds of the universe (soul jazz) store in soho, london when this came on, a reissue i was previously unaware of. the whole album is great, btw:

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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by JAM on Mon Oct 06, 2014 11:07 am

and as jkn points out, another aspect of this topic is the person vs. the music/art.  i will admit to not having any interest in exploring the work of boyd rice or death in june, based entirely on their reputation for dodgy politics and general behavior.  is it possible to separate the two elements and enjoy the music?  i just can't bring myself to do it.


Last edited by JAM on Mon Oct 06, 2014 11:35 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by jkn on Mon Oct 06, 2014 11:16 am

off topic but worth mentioning... Yes! I loved being in record stores in the 1980's and hearing music and going - wow - I've got to have that. Or just talking with the manager or employees about what was new that came in and them knowing me well enough to put things back behind the counter knowing I'd get them. :-) Oh man - yeah - those days are gone.

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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by soillodge on Mon Oct 06, 2014 8:28 pm

Good topic. I think I will make this the first thread where I chime in.

I think the artist, or artists behind a piece of music do matter, for the reason that JAM eloquently stated. You understand everything in a specific context. But this is also a sort of catch 22. You are not experiencing the music [or film for that matter] you are letting it collide with your own expectations. I feel this is somewhat unfair to both the artist and the audience and when I listen to new music, I attempt to clear my mind and just let it happen. Listen to the ideas without a context.

So from my POV. I tend to seek out music because certain people are involved, but then when I listen to it, i try to ignore what I have come to expect from the artists.

`michael

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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by HC on Thu Oct 09, 2014 8:24 am

What if every piece of music was presented to you as if in a 'blind test' and you had to make your impressions simply upon your perception?

This is the concept that JAM brings up from the days of our record store discoveries.
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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by soillodge on Fri Oct 10, 2014 4:01 pm

HC wrote:What if every piece of music was presented to you as if in a 'blind test' and you had to make your impressions simply upon your perception?

This is the concept that JAM brings up from the days of our record store discoveries.

I think that is why mixtapes are still very popular. You can listen to stuff, blind, but you still have some control over the process. More often that not, my experiences in record stores "back in the day", were not enjoyable. I did not like browsing. I did not like interacting with salespeople. I did not like most of the stuff they would play on the overhead music system. Usually going to a brick & mortar place I was just on a mission. Head in, get what I wanted, and then leave. Most of the music I bought was through mailorder catalogs based on reviews, similarities to other artists, or the personnel involved. For example, i would buy anything from World Serpent or Offbeat when they were bangin.

`michael

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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by HC on Sun Dec 28, 2014 9:29 am

So... needless to say that this topic has been on my mind for years... Which is why I'm introducing UNDISCLOSED in a few weeks...

http://undisclosedsounds.com
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Re: Does it mater WHO produced the album?

Post by soillodge on Mon Dec 29, 2014 3:31 pm

This is a great idea. Looking forward to it.

Speaking as an artist myself. There is too often a stigma or association with a certain style or past works. Basically you start making music for the audience and stop exploring. Having an anonymous aspect can really free one up creatively.

`michael

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