Jack White, ‘I’m Shaken,’ and Stirred

Grammy Nominated artist Jack White, interviewed in the wake of his new album ‘I’m Shaken,’ spoke about the originality of music and what ‘tabloid culture’ has done to the song writing plight. When asked about how he writes music, he says it comes differently every time, but his goal is never to air his dirty laundry for the world. He believes that music in itself is supposed to reflect the lives of the listeners, and their emotions, not his as a song writer. So in essence, he is has stirred up the system by saying that music should not be as true to the writer as it is to the listener, which as a result, could start a butterfly effect of implications for the music industry.
For years I have heard my friends call artists ‘sellouts,’ and bands ‘copycats,’ but at the end of the day, it is the musician’s responsibility to play what the listener wants to hear, not what the musician wants to play. This is the case at least for anyone passionate about their audience, confident in their talent, and desiring to be/stay successful. Could it be argued then, that the one and only Justin Beiber himself is more of a modern day musician than say, Bon Iver?
According to White’s theory, yes. Being that most artists do not write their own music, they are given genre and storyline that reflect what listeners want to hear. Having a good voice makes you a singer, not an artist and being an artist makes you a talented individual, not a musician. Arguably, Jack White is both an artist and a musician, but where does that leave everyone else on the spectrum? Is Nikki Minaj equally as talented as the Beach Boys? Is Owl City as inspiring as Queen? Is One Direction, the direct (and timely) reincarnation of the Beatles?
The answer is decidedly no, but just as quality of music has shifted over time, so has its purpose.

This entry was posted in General and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.