Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

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Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby Novice » Sun Jun 03, 2018 1:42 am

Like most of you I listen to all different types of music but I've found that I particularly enjoy good bass lines or good melodies and I use the term "bass line" loosely since a nice guitar riff on a rock song will be listened to like a bass line for me sometimes in the style of how a bass line carries a dub tune (obviously along with the drums) but I'll sort of always translate it viscerally to the way dub feels, even since I was little before I ever heard a dub tune, or at least before I was aware that I had heard one, though I'm still convinced I heard it somewhere or another as young one because the first time I actually listened to dub it was not new sounding at all and very familiar like something I was looking for but just didn't know how to describe except to keep thinking "bass" like some sort of dim witted dolt.

Anyway, so how good reggae/dub rhythm makes me feel (whether it's the minor or major chord I prefer, not sure the difference till someone refreshes memory) is sort of the template for me emotionally or home base for me enjoying a tune. I can hear a song from any genre of music and sort of bring it back to the same thing but I find some people cannot seem to not make that distinction between genre and can't find the common ground, it would seem the experience is just different or not related to one another so I was curious as to other peoples thoughts on the matter. I'll give an example with a sample to try to clear up my meaning perhaps a little better than my explanation.

Footnote: When I first listen to any song I can't help it but I don't really hear the lyrics/vocals necessarily as words, though I obviously know they are saying the words and can hear/understand what they're saying, but the music comes first so I could really care less about the words, they more act as another instrument to my ears for many listenings, unless I choose to actively listen to them and understand what's being said/talked about. This is usually why I often hear them wrong or just as phonetic sounds, examples being either having them sound like just melodic noise made with the mouth or as words my mind makes up on the spot based on the phonetic sound I heard or a word here or there I understand, such as Bob Marley's So Much Trouble In The World he says "million miles from reality" but I hear/heard "building minds through reality" and I understand every does this to an extent and we've had discussions about it but I do it habitually and it's not that I am convinced of what I hear it's just an example of how the words are not a priority over the music to me, at least not initially.

I'm giving the footnote because the example below might fall into the Genre Bias I'm talking about because of the lyrics/style/twang etc but lets see how you interpret it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KRsm2Bg6xrg

I think Pandora or one of those other Orwelian algorhythmic shots in the light music listening programs brought me to the tune above, didn't even realize it was Lynyrd Skynyrd which is better for me to not know, gives me a better listening experience without any associations to muddy my head/perceptions. Anyway, I'm listening to the tune and it doesn't really feel different to me than a good dub tune would sound, the genre, instruments etc don't affect or intrude on how the music is swimming in my head to bend my emotions/feelings one way or another. I find this is a positive attribute for me because I can switch from genre to genre without any interruption or incongruity to my feelings.

But some people seem to not be able to shake the "style" from letting them enjoy it in the same way. This is clearly a southern rock but that particular riff/melody on the guitar, to my ears, could easily translate to a dub tune or listened to in the same way. Anyone agree or disagree?

This particular phenomena is especially pronounced with fans of hip hop, they are notoriously genre biased or at least used to be, unless of course they are producers in which case they are either much more open to different sounds or are in fact just the opposite of genre biased and know how to translate one genre to the other for otherwise gullible or ignorant fans who can't. I've played songs for people, they don't like it, same song gets sampled, not chopped up or dismantled but a direct note for note sample and not they like it. How does this make sense...are your ears and emotions that compartmentalized that SOUNDS either are good to you or bad depending on who/how they are presented, even though they are the same exact sound?

Perfect example....I'll play this tune for someone https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XF06ajG_WjY and they'll quite literally be like, "yo get that f*cking kebab soundtrack out my face" but years later they'll hear this....https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cgoqrgc_0cM now they want extra yogurt sauce with tahini on that kebab cuz it's the dog's nuts!

It's the same f*cking sound, I understand people get brain-washed and manipulated and controlled but the same sound can literally be heard as the **** on the one hand and trash on the other?? And would this be exclusive to the sense of hearing or would other senses apply? I mean could you imagine trying a food and thinking it tastes like **** but then someone you look up to tells you it's delicious and now you taste it and it quite literally feels favorable to your taste buds??

Thoughts?

-Me-
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby drwatts53 » Tue Jun 05, 2018 7:50 am

I used to be biased against country music until I heard Hank Williams (not that I've explored it any further, if only for lack of money and time). I guess I'm still pretty biased against salsa, but as far as prejudices go, I think it's pretty harmless. 8)
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby kalcidis » Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:09 am

Quite a hefty wall of text in your post, Novice. We are still in the twitter era – you can't expect us to read it all! ;)

I am definitely genre biased but it's something I've actively tried to correct. When I started listening to music it was strictly hiphop which pretty much set my affinity for "black" music. One of the first albums I remember which I really enjoyed that wasn't hiphop, soul, funk or jazz was Vashti Bunyan's Just Another Diamond Day. I was probably 16 around the time I heard it and I remember thinking that this was so good and had everything I appreciated in music without being near anything of what I've listened to. Even though I was still quite restrictive in what I listened to for a few years following it at least opened the possibility for me to check other kind of music.

I've never been a rock fan and it's still something I have to push myself to try and explore. There are a few releases I think are worthwhile but it's a genre I'm not that fond of. There's something about electric guitars and the lack of heavy bass lines which turns me off. But then again when my girlfriend (who listened a lot to punk and hardcore growing up) recommended me some of the music from her youth I really got in to some of the stuff that I previously had brushed off. One example is Refused with The Shape of Punk To Come. An awesome album in every way but for me the key was having her explain what she liked about it and when listening trying to latch on to those things. I guess it was a combination of my ill-informed impression of the genre but also being unknowledgeable about the music and therefore being unaware of the nuances within.

We had a local record store here in Stockholm called Multikulti which helped me explore a lot of music from a variety of cultures and I've come to realise that I enjoy folk music from almost anywhere in the world. Nowadays I listen to a wide variety of music but I've come to understand that what's most important for me is heavy and continuous bass lines (one of the reasons I never connected to a lot of ragga with the chopped up bass lines).

I do also relate to being naive regarding a tune/genre helps in appreciating it when there aren't any preconceived notions about the band or the genre. I remember the first time I heard the song Bonnie & Clyde with Serge Gainsbourg and Brigitte Bardot. What I had previously heard by him had me either bored or at times even irritated of his persona. Then I heard the tune in a record store, bought the album and thoroughly enjoyed it (i still listen to the album quite often). I don't think it would have been the same thing if I first had seen the artist and then heard the song.

Variety is the spice of life and sometimes the spices I've refused are what make the dish.

One of the latest conversions I've had was to enjoy music from the ABBA-camp. Frida is awesome (but please ignore the video)!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hf36I26XQPI
Last edited by kalcidis on Tue Jun 05, 2018 10:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby Novice » Tue Jun 05, 2018 3:47 pm

I remember first hearing about twitter and thinking how stupid and pointless it was and thought it wouldn't last passed minute rice. I was wrong, because I am always wrong, because I always forget to stop giving people the benefit of the doubt that they are going to stop being what it is they are and will always end up being. I can only place the blame on a pathological overestimation of the value and importance of LIFE which has made the human race a more advanced species than any other in existence...albeit a race that can easily be wiped out by microscopic, virtually invisible, lower life forms that I will presume don't have the capacity to be so advanced as to be able to think itself so important.

There is nothing inherently wrong with bias, in my opinion, it's just a tool we didn't ask to necessarily possess but was imposed on us one way or another. It's a bit like a knife, you can use it to hunt, carve, cut, shape and generally manipulate things to make them more useful of better for your needs or you could use it to stab and kill someone or you could just keep cutting yourself with it, either accidentally or inadvertently.

You talk about music and what you like with far more enthusiasm and passion, though I still think you hold back emotion but that might be a cultural thing, than many other people on here and your energy about it is pretty consistent. I wonder if the biases you had make you appreciate it more or cause you to focus more on things and absorb them a little more faithfully. You seem pretty well read so I'll "twitterize" my point so that I don't write another editorial and quote Emerson: "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds..." As a side note, I pulled up that quote and actually read the rest of it that it usually not quoted and I have to say it's good thing it isn't because though it still sounds great, it is ripe for abuse by the parasites of other people's works. Here's the whole thing and I'm guessing Kanye would have a field day with it so shhhh...
"A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — 'Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.' — Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood." YIKES!!

A bias would appear to simply be a form of consistency, it's level of foolishness being what gives it it's bad rep.

I checked out Vashti Bunyan tune, it's the type of music I need to be in the mood for to appreciate or enjoy, otherwise it comes off as hoaky or melodramatic, unless of course it possesses some melody or lyric that captures me, but that's subjective. I'll offer this as an example...the actual chorus doesn't come in until almost half-way through but it provides some interesting change to the emotion and mood for me..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOig_hnCj-w

Just to gauge just how much you don't like rock or lack of bass...so does a song like this turn you off https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mmb7TU0OrOI and this one here would be more tolerable since it's bassy but guitar led https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bHQmDqlv5Rc and finally what about something like this..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvsQsao1F88
I agree with you about nuances and context though I used to not think that mattered if the music is the **** it's the **** regardless. I've met somewhere in the middle, some things might get dismissed without context/nuance which is anyone's choice to engage or not but some things to me are the **** with or without context and stand on their own regardless...countless reggae tunes that fit that category for example.

On the topic of spice I agree with you to a point. Some people don't like spicy food, or at least think they don't. If they had cuisine from certain cultures, who take spices and make them the point of the dish as opposed to an enhancer and end up making the diner feel as if their mouth has been molested seeking therapy and avoiding at all costs "spicy" food again then I can understand. But if they'd tried a cuisine who knew how to use spices a little better so that they aren't really aware they are eating spices or "spicy" food then they may have a more enjoyable experience there by opening door to perhaps something a bit more lecherous like those spice abusing cuisines.

Dr watts...Hank Williams will do that to you I suppose...however, soul jazz has a couple of country comps that have some nice tunes on there you might enjoy by people you might not otherwise check for. Dolly Parton for example is just thought of as a pair of big tits by many who aren't in the know but she could write a song as good as anyone and seemingly effortlessly. Most people would recommend her song Jolene as a starter and I don't disagree with it as it is a terrific little ditty in every way but I'm going to recommend another to show her skill...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3JK9aPzouc but if you prefer the more somber side of things then I would go with this one....https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YwGDZWKlcqA but if you prefer one of those under two minute style wippersnappers with a tough little melody albeit with a hoaky mouthed little melody of a hook, that I still thoroughly enjoy then go with https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3qNd2j62xNQ

In conclusion, quite a simple solution to Genre Bias, people are assholes, we can't help ourselves, we don't often have any real idea what it is we like or don't like or why we like it or don't like it, we got theories and declarations and exclamations but at the end of the day we need others to help us figure it out, whether we admit it or not. Most times we will NOT admit it which means we might not listen or might not take it into consideration especially if it comes off as someone trying to tell us or help us because, like I said, we believe we know ourselves better than another which leaves only one option, you can't tell them you can only show them by any means and those means are most effective when they are indirect, not forced not pushed, people have to feel like they are being let in on a secret or some ****. I've recommended things all my life to anyone who will listen. Rarely are the recommendations taken into account when I'm telling someone but goddamn I've never seen people react and want to know something so bad as when I've just been enjoying something without a care in the world to their opinion or if me and my mates were exalting some thing or another with gusto, my how people want in on it then...it would drive me mad but I'd love it at the same time.

I'd love to recommend this to you but I'm afraid I have to keep my shut if I want you to actually listen.....Hilarious!

-Me-
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby drwatts53 » Tue Jun 05, 2018 4:44 pm

Novice, I listened to the country tracks you suggested, and what I appreciated most in the first two (Dolly P and Sammi Smith) was the lyrics. I wasn't keen on the music, though, and didn't like the 3rd at all. There again, even though I prefer (say) the R&B Ray Charles to his C&W incarnation, I like some country songs done by soul singers.

Dolly Parton, btw, is highly articulate and intelligent, even if those may not be her most salient characteristics.
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby kalcidis » Tue Jun 05, 2018 10:34 pm

Novice wrote:Just to gauge just how much you don't like rock or lack of bass...so does a song like this turn you off https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mmb7TU0OrOI and this one here would be more tolerable since it's bassy but guitar led https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bHQmDqlv5Rc and finally what about something like this..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvsQsao1F88


The Kinks was actually very nice and I could definitely listen to it again. The lyrics do make a difference. It's however more of a palate cleanser for me. I wouldn't want to listen to more tunes in the same style for an hour. :mrgreen:

Even though I prefer the Kinks tune to the Whitewash one I could easily see myself listening to a mix of this vibe. I think it's the reverbed and layered production which touches my dub vein.

Corrosion of Conformity is not for me. At. All. I used to work weekends as a dish-washer at a rock club when I was a student. It was 90% rock in this style and I'm sooooo tired of it. But they often (albeit still a vast minority of the selection) went deeper and heavier which made more sense for me. Slow and brooding stuff.
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby Novice » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:02 am

It's a start gentlemen, it's a start!

Kalcidis, don't worry I can't stand most of that 90's type of music that Corrosion of Conformity would fall into, save for a few tunes here and there and this one was one of them. Though as a hip hop fan I can't believe you're missing the absolute gem of a hip hop track I could turn it into, unfortunately I am not a producer and the beat I have in mind would be SPECIFICALLY suited for one current rapper in particular so that limits my idea coming to fruition even further....I do live about 20 minutes from him though and have an old contact that's acquainted so keep the dream alive. Glad you liked the Kinks tune, it's a peculiar one I quite enjoy.

Drwatts, yes the lyrics are what got me as well though I am quite keen on the music as well. As for Salsa, my boy you don't just dive into something like that you have to get your feet wet first or else it's a shock to the system. Slow and steady, you have to work up to salsa and merenge and all that other sh*t that sounds like a bugle with diahrrea. Try this on for size, have a pint or two before, get a little sauced I'm sure it can't hurt...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NuIlpP1U140 now if you don't like that I don't know if I have the medicine to cure the particular ailment your ears suffer from. But if you do like that one, you can maybe give this one a try, though I'm not optimistic about this one, maybe just pretend that trombone is Tommy Mccook or something...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPwo6giiZ_o . Now if you make it passed that one you will be rewarded with this gem, strictly for the initiated, I jest...but not really...listen to the little melody change ups, killer...and I don't understand spanish really but the music this f*ckers making with his singing knows no language barrier as far as I'm concerned and though I don't know what he's saying I sure feel like I do. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gcmcYBnCh8A .

Where's that bloke from BDF, is it Inyaki I think, I'm sure he'll back me up on this one and if he can't then the world surely has gone maaaad!!!!!

-Me-

EDIT: I was trying to put some Puertican co-workers on to this tune for the longest but it wasn't on youtube at the time, I see it's found it's way on there...enjoy or don't, it's still gonna kick either way..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwqSo-S5Mak
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby drwatts53 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:56 pm

Ok Novice, I gave the salsa tracks a try, and was only taken by no.2, mainly because of the trombone, which was something else.

Of course, this debate could be reframed in terms of genre preference - nothing wrong with that, surely? Tastes differ and all that. Perhaps you should try this forum, unless you're on it already: http://www.charliegillett.com/bb/ .
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby Novice » Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:06 pm

Drwatts, they're not salsa tracks really but I'm glad you liked one..I am not on that board but will check it out, I guess I'll need something new to read soon enough if this board is going under.

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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby drwatts53 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:33 pm

You're right, of course - not all salsa.
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Re: Anyone suffer from Genre Bias???

Postby Novice » Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:13 pm

I checked out that link, seems a bit deserted like the ChattyMouth site but not as bad...also not sure if I'm up to the "caliber" of music geekery that is on display there. Sure I recommend things here and there but in reality I'm a bit of a simpleton when it comes to music..don't get too involved with labels, producers credits etc unless it serves some alternate purpose or out of boredom or general interest to find out a little more but honestly when I start hearing people babbling on too long about details other than the music itself I end up losing interest because like I said I'm a bit of a simpleton. I do however enjoy anecdotal tales or relevant information that used to be a quite common on here by the likes of Penny Reel, Russ D, Dougie Conscious, Jaw Warrior and anyone else with a good story to tell. Though I wasn't really too keen on the praise that was sometimes thrust onto the author of a tale considering it's not like they made it up, they just happen to f*cking be there at that point in history and have the memory and recall to replay it for us...with some retroactive appreciation for the "history" they were witnessing as opposed to just a "good weekend" in nineteen seventy whatever they were having.

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