Reel to reel tapes, 8 track tapes, cassette tapes, CDs have become a species under extinction as the digital music empire grows, but vinyl record is a survivor. It has managed to preserve its value thanks to DJs who keep spinning vinyls, artists who insist on releasing their music on vinyl and the collectors, also known as audiophiles, who insist on buying vinyl records because of the incomparable sound quality and that authentic interaction someone should always have with a music piece that he owns. An authentic vinyl lover highlights the importance of vinyl records while foolish hipsters presumptuously call themselves DJs, a term which has totally been redefined nowadays and consists of one critical element: Internet access.
I am a DJ and producer. I’m almost 40 years old now and yet, I feel I know nothing about the realm of music industry, in which I have been swimming for years as a vinyl lover.
Though as a foolish youngster I danced in some good clubs, met and talked to a lot of talented, known and mostly unknown “selectas”, and have heard a lot of decent music in my life, sometimes I am still surprised by what I find.
My daily internet surfing has become a world of brand-new innovative ”DJs” who usually “at the tender age of 6 or 8…” threw their first party somewhere, after discovering in their parents room, (in a hidden old record collection), a record copy of a “Metallica” album, or some other similar stuff, which eventually led them to “spin” some “micro house and glitch techno” in the year 2012, using their tiny high tech laptop or their phone, since it has an “application” which can make it happen. They all end up looking like idiots, to me anyway.
Why? You may ask. Well in my opinion there has to be a line drawn between people who collect and play music, and those who are simply born with a download software in their pants which brings them music for free.
The idea of investment in anything is totally underestimated these days. In case of music, no one cares about the format or the sound quality. It’s all about the quantity. People who have dedicated themselves to music collection, and by that I mean of course vinyl, (proper CD releases are as well ok), pose a different category among music lovers worldwide. Although most people are still left to believe in the myth that records are expensive, therefore there is no reason to invest on them, the reality is different.
Actually there is absolutely no reason to invest on an mp3, as you literally pay for thin air.
Most people, teenagers especially, have no idea about the importance of “owning a copy” of the artist’s work. Apparently they are led to believe that only a moron would pay for music, since what you might want to hear is almost everywhere these days, just type the name of the song and there you go, you have it. Such an attitude of course has destroyed the music industry and the quality involved in it, since from my experience in life, when you are given something for free, especially if you are given tons of it and for a very long period of time, whatever that might be, in a short while you don’t appreciate it. The same has happened with music.
Greedy “downloaders” who thought music was simply a matter of software speed, almost managed to convince everyone that listening to music is a waste of time since you can have more fun trying to get as many mp3’s as you can until you die. The reason I am saying this is because people nowadays spend more time in accumulating music that they will never listen to, than hearing the music they actually collect.
This never happens with vinyl.
When you buy a record you have a clear image in front of you, a solid reason for deciding to invest some money and time to feel some pleasure. You know why you bought it, you know it’s yours and above all: It is a value of time and money.
It will surely not be lost between thousand other tracks, named as “new”, usually products of wasted electricity and time, alphabetically placed in a hard disc, which as usual also contains essays, movies, games, pictures, all forgotten but safely filed, probably to be seen or heard by your children, since you clearly have no time to remember that you actually have that hard disc somewhere, somewhere…
Through this awkward situation, DJs have popped up.
Having spent no money in their lives whatsoever, in order to freely participate in today’s music culture and try to make their way in an utterly changed club scene which lacks of essence, quality and musical background, they simply buy a computer.
I am truly amazed because, once upon a time, the internet was not invented and no man on earth had the opportunity to laugh at a picture of you taking a shit at the back seat of your car, so people had to try harder in order to become famous.
What DJ’s they actually did was some real work, had some real humor, they even used to spend some real money, they read some real books, they would visit real clubs and mingle with real people, not some pathetic utterly confused “thinkers” or eccentric “fashionistas” (old people pretending to be vivid youngsters), sexually bored “forward thinking” “part time” artists” who “like to experiment … because no one else has done that so.. yeah…they are going to do something different…”.
In the past, you could take your risks and decide to become something.Nowadays you may as well just try it because it is so simple to do so, has no cost and its fun.
So let’s take DJs. While being bored on a weekend, having no money to go for a drink in order to show off your properly cultivated beard or moustache, as well as flashing your carefully shaved chest through your v – shaped t shirt, you can stay at home and become a DJ.
How? You may wonder. Well, all you have to do is somehow download some music, anything you like, put it in a memory stick, and the moment you get hold of a laptop you can become a DJ! As simple as that!
No need to worry about the sound quality of the music you get (no one really understands the difference…sound checking is a myth…) the style (as long as Villalobos plays that track you are safe…) or the way you decide to mix (you SURELY have your own way …).
Then, you have to convince the others… You call a friend who studies photography and has no job and also takes crap photos, to take some pictures of you, wearing a pair of brand new white colored headphones, while standing in “mixing position” with your hands on a mixer, above a friends shiny turntable (you don’t play records but who will notice that …no one cares…), while you smile, obviously because you are a promising star.
Well that’s it! You are now a DJ. You can also become a producer – really easy stuff.
You download any software that helps you to compose music. Sometimes the software is given as a free gift if you buy a big TV or an expensive vacuum cleaner.
You create a loop, (that is your track), for around 7 minutes, totally the same from the beginning to the end so that people will not be confused at all. That’s it! You are now a producer.
You are ready, with no money spent, to flood Germany and the rest of the world with thousand of nonsensical minimalistic tracks, under the medium sound productions, which will certainly ensure you a place among other DJs and producers who have worked their ass of to buy thousands of records and have spend thousands of hours trying to get the musical knowledge needed to simply understand, what music is all about.
So, Well done. You are great. Go off and conquer the world.
And don’t forget the nice photos.