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why do you play other people's music?


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What does not wanting pants have to do with anything

Uh I think he said he doesn't have pants...

I still believe the ultimate form of appreciating music is to play it (or some part of it), not to only listen to it.

Can you see yourself acting in a play? No.

Can you listen in your head to your inner voice as you read a novel? Yes.

Can you listen to the sounds you make as you play music? Yes.

This thread is providing me novel entertainment. For now.

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Yes, actually they have quite a lot actually, but you don't seem to have been exposed to very much of any kind of art, be it musical, visual, or literary.

examples to back up your claim?

What are you talking about?

you're going to be playing better music if you play theirs as well.

you don't have to learn a piece to achieve that; you can pick up on whatever harmonic/melodic ideas by listening if you have perfect pitch.

I still believe the ultimate form of appreciating music is to play it (or some part of it), not to only listen to it.

i totally agree with you.

Though thought-provoking, I think the analogy is flawed. There do exist millions of independent readings of poetry, enactments of plays, and performances of ballets, each of which will be slightly different from the creator's vision and be either better or worse (or even neither) for it.

i'm not talking about small differences that don't change the overall work. those examples are more analogous to cover bands. when you interpret a song in the context of ocremix, you are using the source but extensively changing it as well. so the analogy still holds- why aren't paintings interpreted in this way? poems? books? choreographies? plays?

sup

nothin'. i appreciate your input is all.

Elaborate on this point. I'm interested to read exactly how you feel about this subject.

i'm sorry but i really don't want to. there's a whole 28 page thread about that, and i don't want to digress. you can check this out, if you want.

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i'm not talking about small differences that don't change the overall work. those examples are more analogous to cover bands. when you interpret a song in the context of ocremix, you are using the source but extensively changing it as well. so the analogy still holds- why aren't paintings interpreted in this way? poems? books? choreographies? plays?

Oh dear...have you never heard of Tristan and Isolde?

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Fine. Serious post. I'll refrain from being overly sarcastic.

you two share a remarkable propensity for skewing viewpoints.

Nothing was skewed. Those were points that made in your other thread.

my stance is that a composer possesses the most valid interpretations as natural entailment, and interpretations by others aren't inevitably bad, but lesser by nature. what i think is "wrong" is this absurdly arrogant mindset that permeates ocremix which believes in distorting, morphing, or altering others' works and championing them, with inflated chests, as equal or even superior versions. that's what i think is "wrong", not interpretation itself.
I rarely, if ever, see this kind of attitude on OCR.
in considering all art, only music is home to a scene in which this kind of attitude is so popular. do poets alter existing poems? do authors rewrite published books? do artists repaint famous works, changing colors and shapes along the way? and have careers ever stemmed from this, as have with classical performers? it is a ridiculous notion to be sure, but for some reason, musicians exclusively among artists of other disciplines feel as if they have the creative license to do so. having said that, i don't want to dwell on this any longer. the intrinsic worth of classical musicians really has nothing to do with this particular subject matter.
Poems, not that I've heard. Rewriting stories? Yes. Repainted pictures, kind of. They are sampled and mangled and glued to meet new ends all the time. Hell, West Side Story is a remix, so there's theater.

Claiming that your previous thread has nothing to do with the subject matter is very untrue, when the subject at hand would be a sub-category of that topic. You can't say "Non-composing performers are of little use and don't deserve the respect they get." and then turn around and have something completely different that asks "Why do you play other people's music instead of composing? Where is the artistic end in being a performer?" It's the same.

orchestral pieces perhaps? in such situations where a composer enlists performance (not compositional) help, aren't such roles comparable to that of a tool? with the advent of sampling technology, that's pretty evident now than ever before. i heard klaus bedalt produced the pirates of the caribbean soundtrack purely with samples.
Musicians are much more than mere tools. To compare sampling to an actual musician is about as musically ignorant as possible. The feeling and musicality of even an average player cannot be matched by computers and samples.

And no. Klaus Bedalt did not purely use samples. He used the Hollywood Studio Symphony along with other groups and musicians.

right, it would seem that their innate capacity allows them to only perform. however, i don't think i've ever heard of a musician excellent at improvising never write a piece or two.
The majority of jazz musicians do not compose. The majority of jazz musicians improvise.
lol, so yngwie malmsteen makes money off of people who cover his music? i think this is only true for classical composers, but they're so long gone they're not benefiting anyway :P
Well, yes. As tired as I am of hearing your fanboyish enthusiasm for Yngwie, he does make money when people cover his music. He may not need the money, and may not write the music with the intent of making royalties, but he does get them. Also, when your boy Yngwie covers others, he pays them.
yeah that's exactly what i'm talking about. what drives that kind of decision? what makes them elevate performance over composition, especially performance of pieces that aren't even theirs? you'd think it'd make for a much more personal, and arguably artistic, experience to perform your own pieces.
Like with your comment about OCR, I rarely see this attitude where performers are elevated above composers. No one decides that a violin player is elevated above Beethoven.

You're right, though. Playing your own music can be extremely rewarding and is personal, but even with the number of talented composers out there, they get bored of playing only their music and want to play the music that inspired them to write in the first place.

yeah, this looks to be the most common impetus. see, i'm not sure that art is about "wanting".. expression is way more than that. it's a need, i think. if performance is driven by just surface desire, in my mind that disqualifies it as art. i don't think that's the case though.
I would not call the urge to perform a "surface desire" at all. It's much deeper than that. Also, you do not choose what is and what is not art.
in terms of music, i feel like performance could be a natural function of the musical experience itself, something we are inherently driven to do, so it's interesting to wonder what drives it.
You're right to think this and you pretty much answer your own question.
and to answer your question explicitly, the "type" of person i am requires a rational impetus before action, and in other cases, a rational impetus to continue an action. decisions aren't really decisions if they aren't outcomes of shaping factors.
If a deep-seated desire is not a shaping factor, then what is?
you've got to be kidding yourself; a thread that starts with a triple post with huge, emboldened letters, and an overt argument against a thread that starts with a genuine question are similar to you? the only thing similar in both threads is your provocative language.

the "thesis" isn't making an argument at all, otherwise i'd be presenting some sort of stance. the thesis is clearly a genuine question...

i love how, right off the bat, you make these off-hand and insulting statements, rather than contributing a useful answer or two. oh well, it's not like i really care for your opinion at this point anyway. thanks to everyone for the great responses, keep them

Right off the bat I made comments that essentially said, "We've been here before with this same person. Here is the thread where it happened." They were not off-hand or insulting by any means. They were very relevant because, as I explained above, you turned your last thread's statement into a question for this thread.

By thesis-esque, I meant nothing about thesis statements in an essay. I meant like a doctoral thesis, where you write try to write like you have a Ph.D. Your flowery, over eloaborated posts seem to swirl in circles with no particular reason. Hell, zircon just flat out asked you what you were talking about. The guy's not an idiot, and your superfluous use of frivolous vernacular completely masked whatever the hell you were trying to say.

Coming to a community of musicians and music lovers and asking "Where is the artisitc end in being a performer?" and then accusing the community of being everything that you think is wrong with musicians probably won't go over well - no matter how delicately you word it.

I have now answered your question seriously and explained my (and others) knee jerk reaction to your thread.

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I like how he ignored it when I actually explained in depth why I found enjoyment and have often felt a want to play certain music (since it sounds fun).

It's also really funny how he says "remixing" in a manner of speaking doesn't happen in other art communities, when it does, really rampantly, sometimes with the blessings of the original artist. Which is why I say and uphold, that he obviously has a lot less idea of anything in art, art history, how art was made in history and now than he is aware of.

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What? I'm sorry, that is ridiculous. What does that even mean? Also, improvisation is spontaneous composition, so that statement is an oxymoron anyway.

In contrast to the notion that everyone who can improvise also writes music, my statement stands true.

But, for the sake of spontaneous composition, I will clarify. Not all people who improvise also formally write songs, using notation, that they (or others) will play again in the future.

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tin_Pan_Alley

I'd like to direct your attention to this little factoid or whatever. Many of the Early Rock n Rollers and great musicians of the good old days, didn't write their own music, they didn't compose it or write the lyrics. Elvis is a perfect example of this, sang wonderfully, looked good and put on one hell of a show. but didn't write the stuff, and yet many to this day still consider those artists as the greats.

A lot of song were written to be sold to aspiring musicians and singers. written by professional song writers. many songs were done by various singers and each had there distinctive style to them. mostly that's because there was little to guard any song you actually did own with a lack of copyrights.

now a days if a band doesn't write their own stuff or do every thing themselves, they are looked down upon. there are many examples of band's doing a song "better" e.g. more popular than the original. simon and garfunkles "bye bye love" was more of a sucess that the everly brothers which they didn't write that either, around 30 other band had rejected that song before they picked it up.

point being, It's never been truly being the one man act. and sometimes those who can't sing or play the instruments still have a fantastic vision to share with the world. and their music wouldn't be played if somebody else didn't want to play them.

and as for analogies? consider music more like cooking. somebody can take the same recipe change it and get some thing different and delicious. and both the original and the new creation that it was modeled from can be great tasting but in each in there own way, because no matter what you and your personality will show through and find it's way into the music.

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i'm not talking about small differences that don't change the overall work. those examples are more analogous to cover bands. when you interpret a song in the context of ocremix, you are using the source but extensively changing it as well. so the analogy still holds- why aren't paintings interpreted in this way? poems? books? choreographies? plays?

But...they are... :|

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But...they are... :|

oh, please enlighten me! what other artistic scene is even comparable to the level found in music?

It's also really funny how he says "remixing" in a manner of speaking doesn't happen in other art communities, when it does, really rampantly, sometimes with the blessings of the original artist.

keep on making these claims with no supporting evidence. iirc, you, much like darkesword did that in my last thread too. an excellent way to prove a point.

Wait, don't tell me. I'll get it... just give me a little while.

it's obvious. the awesomeness of this thread produced animalistic responses and he was tired of constricting his friend.

Nothing was skewed. Those were points that made in your other thread.

but you did skew them. see, i don't believe interpretation is "wrong" and that musicians aren't "allowed" to perform others' pieces. i believe outside interpretations are lesser than interpretations from the composer, because by nature an artist understands his art better than anyone else.

I rarely, if ever, see this kind of attitude on OCR.

then, why was no one in my other thread able to concede that their interpretations were lesser? rather, some viewed them as equal and some as even greater. there are clear displays of that attitude all over OCR.

Poems, not that I've heard. Rewriting stories? Yes. Repainted pictures, kind of. They are sampled and mangled and glued to meet new ends all the time. Hell, West Side Story is a remix, so there's theater.

this proves my point- it is not nearly as present in other artistic cultures as in music. i'm interested though, what books have been rewritten?

Claiming that your previous thread has nothing to do with the subject matter is very untrue.

although they are somewhat related, in this thread i do not make statements of composing being higher than performing, nor have i belittled the performer's role (other than in pretty specific situations). i am just intrigued as to what would drive a preference of performance over composing, a preference that in many cases completely pushes out compositional interest. yes, with particular conclusions drawn here, we could apply them to the other thread, but that's irrelevant to the here and now.

Musicians are much more than mere tools. To compare sampling to an actual musician is about as musically ignorant as possible. The feeling and musicality of even an average player cannot be matched by computers and samples.

yes, but my argument wasn't a catch all. i said in certain circumstances, such as in employing aid of a studio musician after the part has been written, or employing the use of an orchestra after the score has been completed, is that not analogous to the role of a tool as replaceable? every characteristic producible by an instrument can be sampled, and there's nothing dehumanizing or less human about using those samples in stead. sampling is a relatively new technology, and it'll only progress in years to come.

The majority of jazz musicians do not compose. The majority of jazz musicians improvise.

i have to call bullshit on this. where are you pulling this from?

Yngwie is awesome

i know this, and i also know what royalties are, and that virtually every famous artist will receive them. however it's not a very good reason for validating performance to an artistic end, which is the point of this thread.

You're right, though. Playing your own music can be extremely rewarding and is personal, but even with the number of talented composers out there, they get bored of playing only their music and want to play the music that inspired them to write in the first place.

and which famous composer opts to make albums of others' pieces as opposed to releasing original work? i understand that everyone likes to cover, but in professional circles it is done sparingly. even in jazz circles, people like arturo sandoval, maynard ferguson, john coltrane, sonny rolins, write tons of original material.

I would not call the urge to perform a "surface desire" at all. It's much deeper than that. Also, you do not choose what is and what is not art.

If a deep-seated desire is not a shaping factor, then what is?

you are misinterpreting me. performing because it's fun, which cobaltstarfire and many others have iterated, or because they merely want to, is nothing more than a surface desire. the "urge" that you speak of is exactly what i am trying to identify through this thread; what constitutes it, how deep it is, and things like that.

Right off the bat I made comments that essentially said, "We've been here before with this same person. Here is the thread where it happened." They were not off-hand or insulting by any means. They were very relevant because, as I explained above, you turned your last thread's statement into a question for this thread.

i apologize, i didn't know you were being genuine.

Hell, zircon just flat out asked you what you were talking about. The guy's not an idiot, and your superfluous use of frivolous vernacular completely masked whatever the hell you were trying to say.

i clarified my terms in the first paragraph, terms which i want to stick by, ironically, to avoid confusion/misinterpretation. because, by appreciation i don't mean just listening, by conceptualization not composing, and by realization not just performance. they are more than that.

Coming to a community of musicians and music lovers and asking "Where is the artisitc end in being a performer?" and then accusing the community of being everything that you think is wrong with musicians probably won't go over well - no matter how delicately you word it.

last time i'll say this- this is NOT a criticism, so stop perceiving it in the wrong way. there are plenty of others here that have given me great responses, but you insist on viewing everything i write with narrow eyes. my question is genuine, so stop trying to infer any accusatory undertones.

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I'm gonna completely ignore the rest of the thread and answer the original post, because I find the question very intriguing.

In general, I would say that music is composed because of a feeling. It is the language of our emotions. When someone writes an original piece, it is often because their feelings led them to it. The style, key, time signature, structure, every nuance of that composition is affected by the emotions of the composer and what they were feeling. Thus the song becomes a time capsule and a freezeframe of who the composer was and what they were feeling at that moment.

That said, I think we play other people's music not just because it sounds good... I think that on an instinctive and perhaps subliminal level we want to understand the depth of what that composer was feeling when he or she wrote it, and we simply can't feel all of that unless we are completely immersed in it, playing every note, gaining a deep understanding of WHY they chose the key they did, WHY they chose that time signature. We want to know not just the music, but the reason for it, and we can't begin to have those answers until we're playing it.

In essence, to boil it down to the roughest terms, I think a musician seeks out other people's music and plays it because sharing the feelings of the writer is an intense and beautiful emotional high, and every new song is a new fix. Good music evokes feelings, and great composers can use it to evoke the feelings THEY want you to feel. The purest way to experience it... is to play it yourself.

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TO THE OP:

The answer to your question is easy - you are seriously thinking too much. (and I mean that in a totally non offensive way)

Music is simple - some people write, some people listen, some people play. It's not something you have to force out of hiding like some stray dog; it doesn't even have to be "artistic" at all.

I think in the realm of things like art, poetry, music, etc, we often get so caught up in the production and planning and practicing of music that we forget the joys of even playing a simple note, something most other creatures cannot even come close to doing on purpose.

Don't get so caught up in the little things that you forget to actually enjoy music for what it is - an unquantifiable experience.

If you honestly care that much about whether or not a performer individualizes a piece because it's not what the composer wrote down, or that playing other people's music is intrinsically worthless because there is no "higher" purpose involved, then I truly feel sorry for you.

You are missing out on so much, OP.

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In general, I would say that music is composed because of a feeling. It is the language of our emotions. When someone writes an original piece, it is often because their feelings led them to it. The style, key, time signature, structure, every nuance of that composition is affected by the emotions of the composer and what they were feeling. Thus the song becomes a time capsule and a freezeframe of who the composer was and what they were feeling at that moment.

this is in part why i think of interpretation the way i do. art is the physical manifestation of one's essence, and to just mess around and distort someone else's piece is the zenith of disrespect when accompanied by certain attitudes. you are distorting someone's very being, often with a complete unawareness of the consequences of the activity itself.

That said, I think we play other people's music not just because it sounds good... I think that on an instinctive and perhaps subliminal level we want to understand the depth of what that composer was feeling when he or she wrote it, and we simply can't feel all of that unless we are completely immersed in it, playing every note, gaining a deep understanding of WHY they chose the key they did, WHY they chose that time signature. We want to know not just the music, but the reason for it, and we can't begin to have those answers until we're playing it.

this is a cool thought. this implies.. that there's some quality you can't get out of just listening to a song, you have to play it, you have to experience the song on a higher level to understand that higher meaning. this is exciting haha

In essence, to boil it down to the roughest terms, I think a musician seeks out other people's music and plays it because sharing the feelings of the writer is an intense and beautiful emotional high, and every new song is a new fix. Good music evokes feelings, and great composers can use it to evoke the feelings THEY want you to feel. The purest way to experience it... is to play it yourself.

i completely agree with this. it is the highest order of appreciating music.

Music is simple - some people write, some people listen, some people play

well yes people do do these things, but there are many pursuits of knowledge dedicated to unearthing what drives human choice and action, pursuits like sociology and psychology. psychology itself is purely a study of behavior! you may not hold these interests, but it is by no means a "little thing."

it doesn't even have to be "artistic" at all.

what is art if not artistic?

If you honestly care that much about whether or not a performer individualizes a piece because it's not what the composer wrote down, or that playing other people's music is intrinsically worthless because there is no "higher" purpose involved, then I truly feel sorry for you.

You are missing out on so much, OP.

ahh.. i do play other people's music. the point of this discussion isn't to categorize these activities as things that should or shouldn't be done, but the discussion is an honest inquiry of WHY some are driven to perform. it is fascinating to me, and perhaps not to you, but don't think for a second it's something insignificant and unworthy of honest attention.

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this is in part why i think of interpretation the way i do. art is the physical manifestation of one's essence, and to just mess around and distort someone else's piece is the zenith of disrespect when accompanied by certain attitudes. you are distorting someone's very being, often with a complete unawareness of the consequences of the activity itself.

You know, people ReMix game music for a few reasons,

1. Its awesome music, and the game has a great OST

2. It could be there favorite game, and like fans tend to do, is change it around to there personal style.

3. To get the feel of new music, VG or not. Play a song from Seether or something, and you liked it so much, you wanted to add and maybe change something in it to experiment.

My third point is definitely appreciation of music. You love there music so much, and enjoy it so much, you play with it and maybe make a personal style of yours. But at the same time, you appreciate what the artist(s) have composed to make that song.

Its not like. "Wow. This song sucks, I'm going to make it sound better" you make it sound thats where you come from. That is NOT why songs are Remixed.

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what is art if not artistic?

IT'S FUN! Music is not some mystical thing that you make it out to be - it's an engaging activity that most people find very entertaining. If it wasn't, no one would have anything to do with it!

Art for art's sake is uppity BS - hence why I can't stomach most of today's "modern" works.

People enjoy performing; if they didn't, they wouldn't.

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Seems like a lot of people are providing legitimate reasons for mixing other people's music.

but perhaps the question isn't "Why would someone want to remix another's music?" but more like "Why NOT remix another's music?"

True, but the impression I get from the OP's posts is that he isn't trying to start a discussion for the sake of discussion; he's trying to start a discussion for the sake of pushing his viewpoint. Not that he's ever done that before on a similar topic...

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Seems like a lot of people are providing legitimate reasons for mixing other people's music.

but perhaps the question isn't "Why would someone want to remix another's music?" but more like "Why NOT remix another's music?"

Truest statement I've heard all day. Seriously, not EVERYTHING in life needs to be questioned; some things are just for enjoyment and are just there.

...though I can't help but think about things I shouldn't worry about sometimes.

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You want examples? You've never seen fan art or read fan fiction? People are always taking something that they didn't create and redrawing, rewriting, reinterpreting it in a different way. I mean seriously, look at any fandom of anything. People are constantly putting their own spin on something that exists, and they've been doing it for decades. Music hardly has a monopoly on this phenomenon. Hell, off the top of my head:

West Side Story is Romeo and Juliet. Wicked is the Wizard of Oz. Rosencrantz and Gildenstern Are Dead is Hamlet without Hamlet.

Disney movies are Grimm's Fairy Tales; sometimes Hans Christian Anderson.

That new Friday the 13th movie is coming out soon. It's a remake.

The Ring is a remake of Ringu. The Grudge is a remake of The Grudge.

Mere Yaar Ki Shaadi Hai = a Bollywood version of My Best Friend's Wedding.

DC Comics' "Elseworlds." Marvel's "What If?"

Etc.

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