Greatest Rock Album of All Times

chris_r

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

it is my feeling that barry manilow is not getting his due respect around here. he has been writing and performing beautiful music for over 30 years, and should be ranked right up there near the top of the list of influential musicians of our generation. his ability as a performer is only eclipsed by his ability as a songwriter. his music stretches across all barriers of age, gender, and ethnicity. his mark on music history has been made, all should stand back and pay due respects to the man, the music. he writes the songs...oh yes, he writes the songs.

cr
 

G_Town

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

I'm with ya there Chris, Barry is a juggernaut of musical ability. Without him we would be without the classics like Mandy...the horror.
 

Bob Hill

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

G,
You'd think someone as old as me would know that when the horse is dead, one should stop beating it. But, I'll whack it a couple of more times.

I don't see what age has to do with quality. I do see how age can influence whether someone likes or doesn't like a certain type of music. Ozzie is of my generation yet I have very little appreciation for his music because I do not see the quality in it. I also can see that "greatest" and "best" can certainly have different connotations. If three cords, a redundant bass line and staccato pounding of drums is what someone "likes" I am totally cool with that and respect their choice. But if the discussion becomes one of quality, that is in fact measurable.

You and I know from being in the printing industry that a layman may love a printed piece that you or I see as crap. That can be the choice of the viewer, but from a technical standpoint in music, just as in printing, there are definable ways of comparing musical genres, talent and composition skills. By some measure, some may say Beethoven was a no talent hack because he used too many notes. He was actually criticized for writing music that was too hard to play, but the musicians got better and the music of Beethoven not only influenced classical for years, but also influenced many of the modern day guitarists we've discussed on this forum. It may not be your taste, but nonetheless, it is magnificent music and will stand as great music for centuries to come (in my view).

Another genre that has a heavy influence on music is blues. Again, where would rock be without the black musicians who brought these rhythms and styles from the days of slavery and sharecropping to make music that has influenced and been the basis of rock music since rock became a genre. And what do they get for it? Most of them got a footnote in history as their music was ripped off and chopped up by the rock musicians who claimed it as their own. Robert Johnson, Howlin' Wolf, Willie Dixon, and John Lee Hooker are identifiable names to most, but there are still plenty of tremendous blues musicians in their late years making music every day and scratching out a living.

Anyway, I enjoy the conversation. Maybe I should add music to religion and politics as third rail issues one should never discuss in polite company. Nahhh... it's too much fun.

Rock on, G. I enjoy the chat. <grin>

ps- Barry Manilow is crap. Some may like his crap, but it's still crap. (please tell me you were being sarcastic, Chris)
 

G_Town

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

Ok first you say "Music is an incredibly personal experience" and then you say "there are definable ways of comparing musical genres, talent and composition skills" sooooo one form of music or artist can then be defined as better than another by your statement and that headbangers like myself have no business sharing our musical tastes unless we have determined that our choices have been determined to have superior talent and compositional skills (you're gonna have to get me that flow chart so I know how to tell btw.)

How do explain all the albums sold by OZ? Is it that there are so many unwashed masses out there that don't know what good music is? or maybe it appeals to them on some level that another artist or type of music simply does not, after all we are not all wired the same.

I could be accused of having a narrow minded view of music, although I do have my share of SRV, Prince and the Spinners, but my favorite genre is Metal (could be why I have neck issues now).

I guess I would prefer sticking to your "Music is an incredibly personal experience" explanation as the other sounds a little musically snobby.

Well I'm off gonna restring my guitar tonight and give the No More Tears solo another crack (its a bitch).

As always no offense meant and none taken, Rock on to u 2.

p.s. Oh no u didnt dis the Barry!
 

chris_r

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

i was indeed being sarcastic, but at the same time opening up a point. what qualifies as crap? because barry manilow has been the butt of jokes for so many years, does that make his musical ability crap? the guy is on tour CONSTANTLY, and sells out every show. millions and millions of people LOVE his music. it may or may not be anyone's cup of tea, but you cannot deny that he has done something right throughout the years, and cannot simply be written off as crap because someone who thinks they know so much more says so. there are many genres of music i dont care for, but to dismiss what you dont like as crap, seems a bit heavy-handed, and snobbish.

am i a barry manilow fan? no. but if you ever see the man perform, you can see that he has massive ability to write and perform music..

cr

Edited by: chris_r on Jan 11, 2008 1:02 PM
 

G_Town

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

In light of Chris' wise words I would like to apologize for my derogatory comments about other musicians, they don't suck I just don't care for their music.

Ahh now my conscience is clear.

:)
 

disbellj

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

"am i a barry manilow fan? no. but if you ever see the man perform, you can see that he has massive ability to write and perform music.."

When I was growing up with three sisters and no brothers, and only had 8-track and a record player in the house, when I would get sad about life, I would go put on Barry and cry on my bed to Mandy (and basically would fall asleep while listening to that album).

"He writes the songs that make the fat boy cry, he writes the songs that make you wish you were high, ooooohhhhhh. He writes the songs the that make me want to drink, he'll never stop, he writes the songs"

Don
 

Bob Hill

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

The dead horse is still lying there so I'll smack it again, just 'cause I like smacking dead horses, I guess....

Chris- you said "there are many genres of music i dont care for, but to dismiss what you dont like as crap, seems a bit heavy-handed, and snobbish."

Crap is crap. I'm sure there's crap I like that you would hate and call it crap. My young child banging away on a piano and singing happy birthday may sound like crap to you, but it's music to my ears. If my comment seemed heavy handed and snobbish please chalk that up to email without inflection sometimes sounding harsher than it is.

G - Music is personal and it can be measured, just like printing or art. As I just said I have music that I call crap myself. But it affects me in some way or makes me feel a certain way so I enjoy listening to it. Just because I like listening to it doesn't make it good, it makes it pleasant for me.

The National Enquirer is one of the top selling "newspapers" yet I think it could be argued that it's crap. Brittney Spears sold a lot of music but that doesn't make it good. Sales has no correlation to quality. Just because Barry Manilow sells millions of records and packs auditoriums it doesn't mean his music is not crap. From a purely TECHNICAL standpoint, his music is elevator level quality.

I sifted through my iTunes library (containing 3,139 items) and I'd like to offer some things that I regard as crap but find them appealing to me. From a technical standpoint this is not complex music, any moderately proficient musician can play it, but I like it. I make no judgments, but having a technical job and working in a field of experts a lot smarter than me, I have to be objective. So when I listen to some of this, regardless of the joy I find in it, I also recognize that there are probably a million musicians out there who can play it. Therefore I deduce that it is not technically difficult to perform, even though I love listening to it.

A few bits from my "crap":
Queen – Bicycle
Peter Tosh – Don’t Look Back
World Party – Ship of Fools
Temptations - Just My Imagination
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Give It Away
Mountain - Mississippi Queen (ever heard Oz's version?)
Dread Zeppelin - Viva Las Vegas (No Quarter Pounder CD) or I can't Quit You Baby (Un-Led-Ed CD)
Sonic Youth - Electricity

By the way, out of the 3,139 items, a whole bunch are ones an objective listener would describe as crap.

I really enjoy those songs but you don't need a world class guitar player for any of them. That's all I'm trying to say. I completely respect anyone's taste in music, but we have to be honest with ourselves about it's degree of difficulty. The higher the degree of difficulty the "better" (technically speaking) the music is.

I hope that makes sense and doesn't seem heavy handed.

You guys are fun, and you're tough! Admirable traits in my book. :)
 

G_Town

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

Music is music, higher levels of proficiency don't make it any more or less "music" as was said before here there are many technically superior players out there but lack emotion or feel (noodling is the term). If you can create a song using one scale and only three chords that people like how is that any more or less music than the knucklehead that uses eight scales, ten modes and lines and lines musical diarrhea?

I guess the point you are trying to make is that some players are better than others. While I agree (theres always someone better in every thing) music isn't about technical proficiency it's about feel and emotion. A simple song can be just as powerful or fun or sad or happy (pick an emotion here) than a song that's more technical proficient and visa versa.

It's about the song not the skill level of the artist IMHO.
 

HiTech_Monkeyboy

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

OK, since you guys decided to kiss and make up...

Here's an idea, why not throw out some of your personal favorite "crap". This is the stuff that would make up your desert island collection anyway so here goes, I'll start.

Monkeys-Last Train to Clarksville

Faster Pussycat-(Got Your Number Off the) Bathroom Wall

Guns-n-Roses-Used to Love Her

Mojo Nixon-Stuffin' Martha's Muffin

David Allen Coe-Longhaired Redneck

That's 5... Next.
 

chris_r

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

if i thought any of it was crap, i wouldn't have bought it!

now on the other hand, i am sure that some of you would consider it crap for sure!

getting back to what g-town said - if i am listening to a song, I determine if i like the sound of that song. i am not tearing it apart note by note to try and figure out if it is musically challenging enough. if i like the sound of a song i consider it a good song, i dont mark points of for poor musicianship. there are lots of popular songs that sound great that an amateur musician could learn in a matter of minutes.

cr
 

chris_r

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

> {quote:title=Bob Hill wrote:}{quote}
> My young child banging away on a piano and singing happy birthday may sound like crap to you, but it's music to my ears.

even if i was in the room and that sound did annoy me, i would appreciate it for what it is, and i wouldnt come out and say "boy, what a bunch of crap that is, if you think otherwise you are just wrong and that is all there is to it". i can appreciate this since i have 2 little ones of my own who make PLENTY of noise! ;)
> {quote:title=Bob Hill wrote:}{quote}
> The National Enquirer is one of the top selling "newspapers" yet I think it could be argued that it's crap.

true, but the difference is that you can go into that newspaper and make a fact-based argument that it is inaccurate news. music, on the other hand, can only be judged on opinion, making it a bit more difficult.

> {quote:title=Bob Hill wrote:}{quote}
> Brittney Spears sold a lot of music but that doesn't make it good. Sales has no correlation to quality. Just because Barry Manilow sells millions of records and packs auditoriums it doesn't mean his music is not crap. From a purely TECHNICAL standpoint, his music is elevator level quality.

this is where we really disagree. i have no idea who writes brittney spears music, if it is her or some studio writer (most likely), but whoever did was able to capture a song or songs, make it sound attractive to a large audience, and sell it. what makes her ability to perform and sell these songs any less notable than any other artist? its not my kind of music, but the team behind her, for a time, hit on a musical sound that captured the attention of a lot of people who really liked listening to it. that song or songs had some kind of quality that people liked. same with manilow. what is a better gauge about what is good music other than people wanting to listen to it? particularly with manilow, the dude has been composing and performing his own music for well over 30 years! what do you say makes it crap? the fact that it is "easy listening" or "elevator" music? i am just giving some credit where it is due, he has hit on something, found a huge audience who enjoys his music, and has worked hard for his success.

very fun conversation, ive enjoyed sharing this argument with many people through the years!

cr

Edited by: chris_r on Jan 15, 2008 10:47 AM
 

Bob Hill

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

Bob Hill wrote:
The National Enquirer is one of the top selling "newspapers" yet I think it could be argued that it's crap.
chris_ r answered:
true, but the difference is that you can go into that newspaper and make a fact-based argument that it is inaccurate news. music, on the other hand, can only be judged on opinion, making it a bit more difficult.

We simply disagree on this point. Music can be judged, and I don't mean by how "popular" it is or how many records it sells. I guess this discussion spins on what we mean by "great" or "quality". I'm not judging anyone's taste, but I will argue that quality and popularity are two different things. Like what you want. Creating an interesting melody is a good thing, but that alone does not make a song great.
 

G_Town

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

"Like what you want. Creating an interesting melody is a good thing, but that alone does not make a song great."


and that's where we disagree with you, simplicity does not negate a songs merits. Constructing a song out of a few notes or many makes no difference if it's good it's good.

Tell us what you would consider a "great song"
 

chris_r

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

the only true measure of a song being good or bad is if people enjoy listening to it. seriously, i don't give much thought to the technical merit of a song when i listen to it, i just listen for a sound i like. if i like it, it is a good song to me, and i listen. if it isn't up my alley, i dont. i dont say it is crap because i dont like it or it isn't a challenging enough composition. that seems to be the difference here, i dont analyze when im listening, i just look for a catchy song with a good hook and a good beat. that, however, doesn't make my opinion of a songs quality any less valid.

cr
 

Bob Hill

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

G, you said:
"You've got a whole slew of artists like this the Beatles, Jimmi Hendrix come to mind. (oh boy I'm going to get it for this blasphemy, but seriously they suck IMO)."

This is where I jumped back into this chat. Following the logic laid out here The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix should be considered great, they shouldn't "suck". Heck, by the logic I've read in some of the posts Barry Manilow is greater than The Beatles and greater than Jimi Hendrix. Is that what you think? Manilow is better than Hendrix?

When this whole thread started oh so long ago I posted my list of greatest albums. Here's my analogy on the whole "greatest" thing. First of all, if I started the word "crap" I apologize. I thought I picked that up from another post... I don't want to go back and check. I'll also drop the word "greatest". However, I cannot give up the idea that a more accomplished musician will produce music that is technically better than an average musician. If people want to like average music I'm totally cool with that and would never criticize. Just call it for what it is. Average.

Here's my analogy - you have an average pressman working in your shop. He does an adequate job, but his halftones are a little ragged, he can't keep his shadows open and he's dropping highlights. His four color is inconsistent, it scums and his densities are all over the place. The customer (maybe your largest account) comes in and says "that's the way I like it". You know the printing is not good, even though the account likes it. Everyone in the shop knows a better pressman could do a better job. Now, is that great printing? No (in my opinion). Does the account like it? Yes. Would a judge of quality printing suggest that the printing is good? I suggest no.

Apply that analogy to music. If you want to sell records to the masses that's fine. Just because "the masses" do not appreciate/understand/get the complexity of technically better music does not mean better music is worse. It's still better. I would take The Beatles or Hendrix' worst song over Manilow's "best". But that's just me. Thank God for America. We are entitled to choice and by G we can have a terrific conversation discussing our different opinions.

I would suggest this conversation would be better over a Guinness, but you may like Bud Light. You drink yours, I'll drink mine and we'll have a good ole time discussing the differences.
 

G_Town

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

A great technical musician can create a simple song, what do you do in this case? Is it bad? or good because the artist has the ability to create much more complex music?

I don't think the printing analogy works in this case as incorrect or bad printing is not the same as a uncomplicated song, as long as the notes are correct how is it bad?

Any who I would tend to agree aint neither side budging on this one, make mine a Grolsch.

*puts bullet in dead horse..BLAM*

Edited by: G_Town on Jan 18, 2008 12:05 PM

Edited by: G_Town on Jan 18, 2008 12:05 PM
 

Bob Hill

Well-known member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

Hey G,
Well, it was fun while it lasted...
The dead horse analogy reminds me of the Monty Python sketch about the dead parrot. Familiar with it?

<clipped dialogue>
Mr. Praline: He's not pinin'! He's passed on! This parrot is no more! He has ceased to be! He's expired and gone to meet his maker! He's a stiff! Bereft of life, He rests in peace! If you hadn't nailed him to the perch he'd be pushing up the daisies! His metabolic processes are now history! He's off the twig! He's kicked the bucket, he's shuffled off his mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin' choir invisibile!! THIS IS AN EX-PARROT!!
------------------------

Here's to you G..
Enjoy your Grolsch and your Ozzy and I'll enjoy my Guiness and maybe some Led Zep today.

::klink:: cheers.
 

Greenmonster

New member
Re: Greatest Rock Album of All Times

Of course Boston's album was created in a studio...aren't all albums, except for live/in concert albums created in studios?
 

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