Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Female musicians: 60's-70's Vs. Today

As I sit here, listening to Janis Joplin on my itunes, I can only ask myself this one question… What has happened to music?! Especially female musicians?! Back in day (circa 1960’s -70’s), I may not have been born yet but I know that the music back then was more meaningful, soulful, unique, organic, and just all around BETTER. While listening to older female musicians like Janis, Joni Mitchell, and Joan Baez, I can understand why they were such respected musicians… because they were actually GOOD. Their music was different, they sang from their hearts, their music was REAL! They all had something to say, whether about love, or politics, and they sang it poetically. There’s a message in their music that grabbed peoples attention and had them feeling connected to it (and still does)! What these women sing about, and how they play their instruments reaches a place in your soul that most music nowadays, can’t seem to get to.
Which brings me to my point – Musicians back in the day, even those in the mainstream, were loved because of their MUSIC and LYRICS, and passion in their singing...not because of their looks, who they were dating, what they were marketing, wearing, or any other of those superficial reasons that contribute to musicians being famous these days. Today, in the mainstream media, we have people like Britney Spears, who is basically just famous now because of her negative publicity… but even when she was selling hit records, it wasn’t because of her talent, obviously, it was because she was good looking, blonde, skinny, and could dance around lip synching, while wearing close to no clothes. Because now- it’s sex that sells. Not music. Not lyrics. Not Poetry. That’s why we have Britney, The Pussy Cat Dolls, even Paris Hilton (which proves my point even more) and other cheesy, talent less, entertainers/entrepreneurs. (I refuse to call them musicians).
Whenever I put the radio on now, which I rarely do, the only good stations I ever find are the stations that play the classics and oldies. The rest is just straight up AWFUL music. So bad, that all I can do is laugh and think to myself “These girls have got to be joking… right?”

How did music change so much? How did we go from Janis to Britney? From songs about real issues, to songs about how hot they are? I know that everything, over time, evolves…but how did it get to this? And how is it going to be in another 30 years? I’m scared to find out!

Here are some examples… I’ve grabbed some lyrics from the female musicians I was referring to from back in the 60’s-70’s… and then… some lyrics from the female musicians we have now…
Decide for yourself.

Back Then:

Janis Joplin: "You can go all around the world trying to find something to do with your life, baby, When you only gotta do one thing to make it in this world. You got a woman waiting for you there, all you ever gotta do is be a good man one time to one woman and that’ll be the end of the road babe, I know you got more tears to share, babe, So come on and cry, baby."
(Cry Baby)

Joan Baez: “The moon is low on the southland .The frogs are asleep on the lake. Did you know that tears run in rivulets, and hearts can repeatedly break? And this may well be the last time, if my spirits don't pick up and fly. For though it's sad, it may well be true, that our time is passing us by.” (Time is Passing Us By)

Joni Mitchell: "By the time we got to Woodstock, we were half a million strong, And everywhere there was song and celebration. And I dreamed I saw the bombers riding shotgun in the sky, and they were turning into butterflies above our nation." (Woodstock)


Britney Spears: "Outrageous, When I move my body. Outrageous, When I'm at a party. Outrageous, In my sexy jeans. Outrageous, When I'm on the scene. Outrageous, My sex drive. Outrageous, My shoppin' spree. Outrageous, We on a world tour. Outrageous, Let's be it, girl…Outrageous."

Pussy Cat Dolls: "Don't cha wish your girlfriend was hot like me? Don't cha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me? Don't cha? Don't cha wish your girlfriend was raw like me? Don't cha wish your girlfriend was fun like me? Don't cha?"
(Don’t Cha)

Paris Hilton: "Every time I turn around the boys fighting over me. Every time I step out the house they want to fight over me.
Maybe cuz i'm hot to death and I'm so so so sexy. All the boyz all the silly boyz they want to fight over me."



Anonymous said...

HAHAHAHA it's so true, it kills me. You couldn't have put it better. Songs today seem to focus more on the way they sound (all that party blasting bullshit) and less about the words they are saying. Keep up the good work girl.

samantha von x said...

you mean your soul isn't moved by the pussy cat dolls??

the music industry irons out all of the uniqueness and substance in our female stars. it's sad!

Acquiesce4101 said...

Those that love the new age music should really have posters of the producers and composers that write it. If you are looking for something moving and political, try under ground hip hop .. and even something that has recently been merging hip hop with jam bands like STS9 and Jurassic 5. Keep in mind that nothing has been taken from us. . the industry has just chosen not to give anymore, we still have the good stuff. . . Play it proudly and embrace it.