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Everything popular is wrong: Making it in electronic music, despite democratization | Little White Earbuds - NightlyStefan Goldmann on why Web 2.0 can work for you but won’t for most, where all the money went and how working against the market consensus can be a winning strategy. Electronic music. What we believed for a long time was that anyone with a bit of talent had a chance at a career of about ten years before eventually retiring from the circuit. Of course there are exceptions for whom this does not seem to apply. Francois Kevorkian has probably had the longest career here (unless we count Kraftwerk as part of our little world); and it’s hard to imagine techno or house without Richie Hawtin, Jeff Mills or Laurent Garnier. That’s the good news: it does not necessarily have to meet a predetermined end.
In “Everything Popular Is Wrong,” Stefan Goldmann claimed that the more artists deviate from the known and established, the better their chances are for success. But why should this be so? Now he offers a detailed examination of the psychosocial framework that underlies what we listen to, looking into the factors that decide what is culturally relevant and what is not — with surprising results: exploring the unknown is not only more fun, but also more rewarding. You can read Part 1 here . Life cycle: crystallizing fields and the avant-garde For an obscure speech, held in 1961 in the German city of Lübeck, anthropologist Arnold Gehlen designed one of the most accurate descriptions of how culture works in the big picture.
In “Everything Popular Is Wrong,” Stefan Goldmann claimed that the more artists deviate from the known and established, the better their chances are for success. But why should this be so? Now he offers a detailed examination of the psychosocial framework that underlies what we listen to, looking into the factors that decide what is culturally relevant and what is not — with surprising results: exploring the unknown is not only more fun, but also more rewarding. The amplified champions In Kurt Vonnegut’s novel Bluebeard , its protagonist Rabo Karabekian muses on the origin of special talents and the diminished opportunities in modern societies: “I think that could go back in time when people had to live in small groups of relatives – maybe fifty or hundred people at the most.
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What was the role of music in the evolutionary history of human beings? And is it possible at all, you might wonder, to study this empirically , given the fact that neither music nor musicality fossilises?* So, better forget about it?
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Zaha Hadid/Swarovski Crystal Palace Collection Roughly 2,500 years ago, Pythagoras observed that objects, such as the anvils he purportedly studied, produced harmonious sounds while vibrating at frequencies in simple whole-number ratios. More complex ratios gave rise to more dissonant sounds, which indicated that human beings were unconsciously sensitive to mathematical relationships inherent in nature. By showing that the world could be described mathematically, Pythagoras not only provided an important inspiration for physics, but he also discovered a particular affinity between mathematics and music—one that Gottfried Leibniz was to invoke centuries later when he described music as the “unknowing exercise of our mathematical faculties.” For a thousand years, Western musicians have endeavored to satisfy two fundamental constraints in their compositions.
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