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Old 03-08-2013, 06:51 PM   #1
DaleZ93
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Originality or Ignorance?

Okay, it seems that the more I learn about music and look at what others have done, it discourages me. It seems everything that can be done in music has been done. There are finite possibilities that we can do. We all know about the four chord song Here. I've also noticed other musicians using the same progressions and it makes me wonder if there is any such thing as originality or if its just ignorance. Any thoughts?
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Old 03-08-2013, 06:56 PM   #2
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we haven't even scratched the surface on musical potential yet. DAWs are replacing sheet music and orchestras. synthesizers and home-made samples are finding their way into all kinds of music. the personal composer has never had so many options available to them - with a good computer you can make music out of essentially anything.

man up and dig deeper, there's always something new happening, or a new way to look at something old, or a way to simplify or complicate something, and then there are a plethora of genres, styles, instruments, and conventions that can all be mixed in any way you please
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Old 03-08-2013, 07:00 PM   #3
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Well nothing is original anymore, there's only 12 notes...

but i wouldn't call it ignorance either. Just because 23,591,685 songs have the same chords in it doesn't make it ignorant, expected sure, boring maybe....but not ignorant. The way I look at it is just do what you do and do it the best you can. Good players/groups are recognized to be good based on how they do whatever it is they are gonna do. And yeah there might be "ideas" in our heads of something cool and amazing, and dare I say unexpected...but chances are it's not as different as we think, which is fine there's nothing wrong with that. If you're going to play I IV V's all day long then great, people take notice if there are more aspects about it that are good. That doesn't mean musical ability takes a backseat, but it also doesnt have to be the only good aspect....

I don't know, tough topic, it varies all the time too.
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Old 03-08-2013, 07:09 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by gerraguitar
Well nothing is original anymore, there's only 12 notes...

and a million timbers, and a million rhythms, and a wide spectrum of dynamics, accents, and tempos

guitarists drastically overprioritize note choice. there's a reason there can be a billion and a half songs with the same 4 chords - it's because they can all sound completely different with minimal effort.
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Old 03-08-2013, 07:10 PM   #5
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the rub is that if something is truly original, people won't warm up to it very easily and it'll be doomed to obscurity until some fool manages to capitalize on it some time later.
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Old 03-08-2013, 07:36 PM   #6
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You're only limited by your imagination and preconceptions of what music should be.

It's sometimes crazy to me to hear opinions like this (and a lot of people think like this). I mean, I'm not super into mainstream music so I can't really speak to it, but in art music we've never been in a more exciting or frustratingly cutting edge era in history. New musical thought in the last 100 years has opened up so many doors that we can take music through and the computer in the last 20 years or so has created seemingly limitless possibilities in creative thought.
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Old 03-08-2013, 07:46 PM   #7
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Originality is overrated anyway, why concentrate on being original at the expense of making something good? I'm not saying that the two are mutually exclusive but really what is the point of expending so much effort being original when what you produce is shit?

Make something good first, if it's also something entirely original then so be it.
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Old 03-08-2013, 08:04 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Hail
and a million timbers, and a million rhythms, and a wide spectrum of dynamics, accents, and tempos

guitarists drastically overprioritize note choice. there's a reason there can be a billion and a half songs with the same 4 chords - it's because they can all sound completely different with minimal effort.

THIS.
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Old 03-08-2013, 08:06 PM   #9
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I think about it this way. So what if people can hear a few of my influences in my music? I'm not writing music to be "original". (Though it is nice when I know that no one else has every written a song exactly like mine. As Hail said, there's an infinite amount of timbres, rhythms, dynamics, accents, tempos.) I'm writing music because I really enjoy doing it. It's almost a form of catharsis for me. Don't worry about if your music sounds like artistX or composerY, because you'll probably 9/10 find some minute similarity.

All of that said, as long as you can write music that pleases you, why does anything else matter?
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Old 03-08-2013, 08:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hail
and a million timbers, and a million rhythms, and a wide spectrum of dynamics, accents, and tempos

guitarists drastically overprioritize note choice. there's a reason there can be a billion and a half songs with the same 4 chords - it's because they can all sound completely different with minimal effort.


This pretty much destroys your theory.

The 60-70's were heavily melody based. The 80-90's started addressing rhythm more and now it's the texture of music that seems to have become the focus. if you looked at the most developing area right now (Electronic Music) you would realize this! Music is always changing and evolving!

You're probably too busy listening to genres that created it's 'Sound/Style' years ago if you have such a narrow minded viewpoint! New templates are always being created, you just have to look into it with a little more of an open mind
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Old 03-09-2013, 04:21 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by gerraguitar
Well nothing is original anymore, there's only 12 notes...


Maybe in Western music. Microtones open up to a whole new world of possibilities, PLUS it can be interesting to play around with them on a guitar utilizing pre-bends.
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:40 AM   #12
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Maybe in Western music. Microtones open up to a whole new world of possibilities, PLUS it can be interesting to play around with them on a guitar utilizing pre-bends.


scelsi's use of microtones freaks the hell out of me still

plus pre-bends got ruined by pantera
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Old 03-09-2013, 09:24 AM   #13
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Maybe in Western music. Microtones open up to a whole new world of possibilities, PLUS it can be interesting to play around with them on a guitar utilizing pre-bends.


Believe me, I love all these aspects about music, like the timbre thing and rhythms, I completely get that and agree with it too....

....but, to me it's unrealistic to ALWAYS think that way. My use of microtones aren't going to get me a gig over anyone else, in certain situations nobody is going to care how "original" you sound. If you are a working player then you're going to show up to do the job. And I love aspects of music that keep it interesting like rhythms and whatever else, I know I sound like I am against the dream and the romantic side of making music. But there are certain areas of music that it just doesn't matter, and it's perfectly fine to acknowledge both sides of the argument.
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Old 03-09-2013, 09:47 AM   #14
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what argument lol you just sound like a defeatist
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:01 AM   #15
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Everybody has always thought that everything has already been done. You can't be 100% original because you are the sum of your influences. But nobody writes like you because nobody has exactly the same influences as you. So just write music. I wouldn't care that much about if people like it or not. I pretty much write for myself because I like writing my own music.

For example in the 60s nobody knew about heavy metal. But then in the 70s people just started writing heavy metal songs. If they had known about heavy metal in the 60s, they would already have written all the heavy metal hits. You can't know what the music will be like in the future because if you knew, you would already have done it.

My point is, don't wait for something new. Heavy metal was born because people started playing songs faster or heavier. First heavy metal songs were pretty much blues influenced. You can't start a new genre instantly. New genres need time to develop. Write the music you like. It will have something in common with some song. That's just how it is.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:44 AM   #16
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what argument lol you just sound like a defeatist

a defeatist? alright whatever man
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Old 03-09-2013, 11:14 AM   #17
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Old 03-09-2013, 11:28 AM   #18
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Ummm... what?
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Old 03-09-2013, 11:28 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by crazysam23_Atax
I think about it this way. So what if people can hear a few of my influences in my music? I'm not writing music to be "original". (Though it is nice when I know that no one else has every written a song exactly like mine. As Hail said, there's an infinite amount of timbres, rhythms, dynamics, accents, tempos.) I'm writing music because I really enjoy doing it. It's almost a form of catharsis for me. Don't worry about if your music sounds like artistX or composerY, because you'll probably 9/10 find some minute similarity.

All of that said, as long as you can write music that pleases you, why does anything else matter?


ol Einstein wrote that the secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources. in music this means to have as many influences as you possibly can. i listen to all the genres of the world (except electronic and blatantly corporate garbage).

you might like punk. but if you only listen to punk, you can only bring to it what others have done before you. if you listen to punk and flamenco, then you have a bit more options. if you listen to punk, flamenco, bluegrass, classical, funk, jazz, fusion, chants the monks do in the Himalayas, African, metal etc etc, then you have even more options.

anyway, music is an art, and art is a form of entertainment. your creativity might help you gain recognition for your entertainment, but in the end, you're a musician to entertain people. as such, does it really matter what you play as long as people spend some of their time listening to you? sitting here with a guitar in my hands typing this crap.
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Old 03-09-2013, 11:36 AM   #20
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Hey, look, I enjoy that four-chord song video as much as the next person, but you realize something?

Those songs aren't the same song.

It's amusing that they have the same harmonic structure, but they are not the same song.

There is plenty of great music out there left to be written.
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