RIP original song writing
Tague Ferguson, 21, a Sociology graduate and currently resides in York. He records alternative rock music, as well as strutting his stuff on stage, and would like to build a career out of it.
Tague thinks that capitalism is wrecking modern music and with it the opportunity to challenge the status quo.
Welcome to modern music, where honesty and integrity has been replaced with a collection of commodified lies. Or maybe you've 'fallen in love on the dance floor'? And you really 'don't know you're beautiful'? Or maybe you're into 'hitting your baby just that one more time'? If so, I urge you to piss off. Don't worry, I'm not totally naive, music has always been a business - always. And 'suits' have always been trying to find ways to heighten their share in the music entertainment market. The problem is when these arse-cheeks control who and what is played to the point where almost everything in the charts has ZERO authenticity, ZERO honesty and ZERO heart, it leaves you wondering, what's the point? I mean, what happened to real creativity and genuine talent?
Even fighting the status quo has become an issue packaged up and sold to us on iTunes. Look at reality television and, more specifically, The Voice - a BBC singing contest that gathers viewing figures by standing against X Factor's obsession with outer appearance. But The Voice is still a huge commercial success, just with a packaged-up premise of morally-correct positive discrimination. This does nothing to help music. The public is still exposed to another round of pointless pop stars who take the attention away from genuine musicians writing music about real life; musicians who actually play instruments, and who actually try to challenge the failings of contemporary society through their work.
My biggest worry is the death of British song writing. And, most importantly, the death of song writing that reflects and addresses the issues in our lives. If one was to look at the charts, you wouldn't realise that obesity is rising, depression is nearly an epidemic, that we are living in a recession, and that we live in an ideological nightmare where no other political system can really challenge capitalism. Music used to be at the centre of new thought, not trapped pathetically in an over sexualised commercial con. Punk used to scream about "Career Opportunities", Morrissey used to argue "Meat Is Murder" and even Mick Jagger questioned consumerism, claiming he "can't get no satisfaction". Whatever happened to the songs about the problems of modern life? Like higher divorce rates, foreign poverty, political frustration, needless riots, and global warming - who's singing about that? No one. Let's just hear another pointless love song written by a billionaire and hope Adele will sing it.
Frank Zappa once argued that the greatest problem with modern music is that no producers or record companies try anything new. And so in their constant desperation to make money they always take the safe bet and churn out the same thing over and over again. That's why Rihanna sounds like Katy Perry. That's why Christina Aguilera copies Madonna by strutting around in black leather underwear, eating bananas and humping chairs. Any why Westlife and One Direction talk about love in every song - if they're 'not in love' than there's 'just no justice in this world'! Even 'the rebel' is, ironically enough, sold to us. Pete Doherty goes into rehab, or Liam Gallagher starts another fight and the news is fed to us alongside an advert for their new album. It goes on and on until we end up like today, where almost every form of argument is just a ridiculous satire of a rock star misbehaving. It feels like everything is just another hard sell - even rebellion itself.
There are glimmers of hope, though. Websites such as Soundcloud and MySpace allow musicians to upload their own stuff and discuss new music without a money-making agenda. And I'm holding on to the hope that mainstream music will return to the days of genuine, unrivalled passion. And that people will want to listen to passion rather than pop. A passion for change that will scream so loud that cheap, corporate music will go back to where it belongs: to the ipods and CD players of 10-year-old girls who sing into their hairbrushes and dance in their bedrooms.