"Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

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JJ_Jettflow
KVRian
884 posts since 23 Jan, 2011

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 5:16 am

aciddose wrote:How many people watch youtube videos of skrillex? Way more than jam in your band.

It isn't an invalid point to make, but it needs to be understood in context and it is clearly not something that should justify belittling those who don't do things in a particular way.

Part of artistic expression is freedom of expression: without true freedom you can't have true art.

Look at the under-belly of the more disgusting parts of the internet if you want to really peer inside the human heart. This is something you would never express to another person because you fear them learning your identity, it inspires fear simply that you know who is speaking even if it is the truth.
In regard to watching the Skrillex video, I did not think that the articles were talking about the audience. I felt they were more directed toward musicians. I also do not think that the articles or myself are belittling artists in any way but trying to shed some light on the practicality of not relying on a computer too much...not only as a storage and archival device but as a songwriting partner as well.

I use a computer as much as the next musician as well as many, many plugins and software titles and regardless of my skills, I find I am leaning and depending on the computer more and more. Why? Convenience maybe or laziness maybe but not lack of knowledge. I choose not to use my music training. However, many modern musicians do not possess those skills in the first place so then they are at the complete mercy of the technology they use. I have seen an ad with DeadMouse where he is randomly moving notes around trying to achieve the desired goal and he comments "this would be so easier if I knew what I was doing"...that pretty much sums up my thoughts on the matter. To say that is not an act of belittlement, but a fact.

BTW, I talking about jamming in a live performance but rather as a way of writing. Many musicians used to write as a group and some still do.

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Gamma-UT
KVRAF
5255 posts since 8 Jun, 2009 from UK

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 6:07 am

JJ_Jettflow wrote:I was referring more to the aspect say jamming, where cues are taken off not only what the other musicians are playing but the fact that you can see what they are playing as well. I cannot see turning one's monitor on their laptop providing much information to any other players as can be had by turning toward someone to let them see the chords you are playing on your guitar.
Leafcutter John who is both a solo musician and part of the jazz act Polar Bear uses a Mac running (I think) Max/MSP. He's an integral part of the band in much the same way as Eno in early Roxy Music and Alan Ravenstine in Pere Ubu - the latter two simply happened to use analogue electronics in the 70s. You can see the musicians cueing off each other in Polar Bear - not least because John is sometimes processing the other instruments through the rig. A computer appears to be no hindrance to jamming.

That's just one example. I've lost count of the number of acts I've seen, particularly around improv-oriented genres like jazz, that have incorporated computer instrumentation into their setups. They don't have issues. They could easily use a monitor to flash up chord changes - the reality is they've moved somewhat beyond having to do that.

JJ_Jettflow
KVRian
884 posts since 23 Jan, 2011

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 7:00 am

Gamma-UT wrote:
JJ_Jettflow wrote:I was referring more to the aspect say jamming, where cues are taken off not only what the other musicians are playing but the fact that you can see what they are playing as well. I cannot see turning one's monitor on their laptop providing much information to any other players as can be had by turning toward someone to let them see the chords you are playing on your guitar.
Leafcutter John who is both a solo musician and part of the jazz act Polar Bear uses a Mac running (I think) Max/MSP. He's an integral part of the band in much the same way as Eno in early Roxy Music and Alan Ravenstine in Pere Ubu - the latter two simply happened to use analogue electronics in the 70s. You can see the musicians cueing off each other in Polar Bear - not least because John is sometimes processing the other instruments through the rig. A computer appears to be no hindrance to jamming.

That's just one example. I've lost count of the number of acts I've seen, particularly around improv-oriented genres like jazz, that have incorporated computer instrumentation into their setups. They don't have issues. They could easily use a monitor to flash up chord changes - the reality is they've moved somewhat beyond having to do that.
But my comments are for those who rely most strictly on computer-driven systems and not hybrid style groups. Like I stated relying "too much" on computers; not meaning to avoid using them at all. If an artist can successfully integrate computer-based music in a live band, great. But if it is someone running the same loops and midi files they recorded the song with and then just pretending to be doing something live, that is a very different thing. Unfortunately, the latter happens far more the former.

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Gamma-UT
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5255 posts since 8 Jun, 2009 from UK

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 7:48 am

JJ_Jettflow wrote:But my comments are for those who rely most strictly on computer-driven systems and not hybrid style groups. Like I stated relying "too much" on computers; not meaning to avoid using them at all. If an artist can successfully integrate computer-based music in a live band, great. But if it is someone running the same loops and midi files they recorded the song with and then just pretending to be doing something live, that is a very different thing. Unfortunately, the latter happens far more the former.
So no live performers at all. Not even a singer. Got it*.

That would be what we call in the trade call a "DJ set". This may come as a surprise to you but people have been using all sorts of technology to do that kind of thing for some time and not just computers. I blame that Paul Hindemith with his mad Trickaufnahmen turntable skillz.

Unsurprisingly, in all cases if the equipment breaks or is not compatible with the media, the music stops.

* Or maybe you're now going to include a singer. Or the requirement that the performance be on a Tuesday or when there's an R in the month.

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Gamma-UT
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5255 posts since 8 Jun, 2009 from UK

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 7:58 am

Actually, the one time I've seen a set break because of a computer mishap it wasn't because the computer itself stopped working. For some reason the digital audio I/O the guy was using wouldn't clock-lock during setup. The show organiser, who is quite an experienced computer-based performer himself just said "use the regular audio-out port, it'll be fine". The performer decided it wouldn't be hifi enough, had a hissyfit and stomped offstage, leaving the singer behind.

Evidently, as he was going to perform with a singer, this was a hybrid act and therefore, apparently, not relevant. But it is at least an example that often it's not the gear that's the problem.

JJ_Jettflow
KVRian
884 posts since 23 Jan, 2011

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:09 am

Gamma-UT wrote:That would be what we call in the trade call a "DJ set".

-So no live performers at all. Not even a singer. Got it*.
-* Or maybe you're now going to include a singer. Or the requirement that the performance be on a Tuesday or when there's an R in the month.
Not sure where you got that from. I did not state that at all nor did I intentionally imply that.

Lots of musicians other than DJ's use computer driven systems to play music. You seem to be forgetting the many artists who make a living playing in lounge style/small club setting that use a computer-driven system as either full or partial accompaniment....as in a duo that may play sax and guitar and use technology to fill out their act.

JJ_Jettflow
KVRian
884 posts since 23 Jan, 2011

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:14 am

Gamma-UT wrote:Actually, the one time I've seen a set break because of a computer mishap it wasn't because the computer itself stopped working. For some reason the digital audio I/O the guy was using wouldn't clock-lock during setup. The show organiser, who is quite an experienced computer-based performer himself just said "use the regular audio-out port, it'll be fine". The performer decided it wouldn't be hifi enough, had a hissyfit and stomped offstage, leaving the singer behind.

Evidently, as he was going to perform with a singer, this was a hybrid act and therefore, apparently, not relevant. But it is at least an example that often it's not the gear that's the problem.
Your comments would be better accepted if you did not feel the need to inject unneeded sarcasm in them. Not sure why you feel the need to be sarcastic as I am not being sarcastic with my statements to you. If I am I apologize and have not done so intentionally.

But if you cannot control your need to be sarcastic, please do not converse with me.

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aciddose
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12336 posts since 7 Dec, 2004

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 4:05 pm

You're just trying to make a distinction based wholly upon a single perspective while ignoring the mirror perspective staring you right in your face (it's your own face reflected!)

Live performers that don't incorporate experience from solo work in a DAW or similar will also be lacking a significant element from their performance. Neither method is "better", they're simply unique.

To push the fringes of any art form requires looking outside the established "norms". You can't come up with something new and revolutionary by doing the same things over and over. In that case you're relying on nothing but luck and random chance to allow for an accident to occur (a "genetic musicaltation") that leads to new inspiration or pushes you in a new as of yet undiscovered direction.

Much as playing in a group and incorporating feedback from other musicians can improve a performance, it can also limit or altogether eliminate certain forms that are incompatible and therefore mutually exclusive with live or group performance including merely feedback between takes vs. completely isolated work free from interference.

The argument is rooted in the distinction between art forms as a source of personal expression "I am the creator" vs. a social phenomenon "this is our work" which also includes the audience (although you seem quick to dismiss the idea for some reason!)

Again, these are merely different perspectives and to remain willfully ignorant is nothing but. Ultimately they reduce to the same abstract: regardless of whether you view your work as "personal expression" or not, you can never be fully isolated and therefore it is impossible for your work to be truly solely "yours": your mother might have had something to do with it!

"... but who created the creator?"
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Michael L
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3000 posts since 25 Jan, 2014 from The End of The World as We Knowit

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 4:32 pm

Miller Puckette points out that software which is mysterious for users increases the "luck and random chance" in musical decisions and does not help users choose "a new as of yet undiscovered direction." Thus, I only buy software if I have the time to understand it deeply enough to play it like an instrument.
To be or not to be?
Bb

JJ_Jettflow
KVRian
884 posts since 23 Jan, 2011

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sat Feb 17, 2018 6:18 pm

aciddose wrote:You're just trying to make a distinction based wholly upon a single perspective while ignoring the mirror perspective staring you right in your face (it's your own face reflected!)
What I am trying to point out is the folly of depending too much on using a computer-based system, both as for the art that is created with it and as a way of archives and safekeeping of music.

aciddose wrote:To push the fringes of any art form requires looking outside the established "norms". You can't come up with something new and revolutionary by doing the same things over and over. In that case you're relying on nothing but luck and random chance to allow for an accident to occur (a "genetic musicaltation") that leads to new inspiration or pushes you in a new as of yet undiscovered direction.
What is "pushing the envelope" in regards to using a computer to write or perform music on? It is actually the norm. Painters have had the same colors to work with for centuries and amazingly pushed the limits of what is considered art while the tools they use hardly changed. What sets their work apart is the human element.

Realism, Painterly, Impressionism, Expressionism and Fauvism, Abstract and Photorealism are just a few of the art forms that are all created with the same brush, paint and canvas and each is a distinction as could be. They pushed the limits with their imagination, not with a new toy to fool around with.

It seems modern composers though must be continually stimulated by some new tool to create their masterpieces.

aciddose wrote:Again, these are merely different perspectives and to remain willfully ignorant is nothing but.
Yes and to say that someone with little to no musical knowledge, who is doing nothing more than fooling around with a computer and software, is somehow a ground-breaking, limit-pushing artist is laughable. Back to the great painters; Dali and Picasso produced very different art but still, both learned the basics. Both studied with mentors and learned and practiced how to paint the established way before venturing to push the limits. They did not just go out and get some paint supplies, randomly dab it on a canvas and then try and claim they were ground-breaking painters.

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aciddose
KVRAF
12336 posts since 7 Dec, 2004

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:17 am

What about the fellow beating a single drum?

Ah so I see what this is about. It's a superiority complex. Right then.

Let's switch the subject to which colors of flag you prefer.
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morelia
KVRAF
4590 posts since 16 May, 2002 from Brisbane , Australia

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:29 am

Seems a pointless question to me as there are way too many variables. Has to be answered on a case by case basis.
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JJ_Jettflow
KVRian
884 posts since 23 Jan, 2011

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sun Feb 18, 2018 5:12 am

aciddose wrote:What about the fellow beating a single drum?

Ah so I see what this is about. It's a superiority complex. Right then.

Let's switch the subject to which colors of flag you prefer.
What about the fellow beating a single drum? He is still actually playing, right? It's not the fellow who programmed beating a single drum? There is a big difference. Even beating a single drum requires some learned skill. Without practice, he will not have the endurance to beat it consistently for very long, if he can beat it with much consistency to begin with. Without the skill, he will have trouble keeping a consistent tempo and will have no understanding of rhythm either. Even punk rockers had some minimal skill set.

And what is "superior" about learning the basics of something you are doing?

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thecontrolcentre
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26014 posts since 27 Jul, 2005 from the wilds of wanny

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sun Feb 18, 2018 5:23 am

Even punk rockers had some minimal skill set
Oh yeah?
Image

JJ_Jettflow
KVRian
884 posts since 23 Jan, 2011

Re: "Where does artistry end and copycat cut and paste begin?"

Post Sun Feb 18, 2018 5:38 am

thecontrolcentre wrote:
Even punk rockers had some minimal skill set
Oh yeah?
Image
Actually, according to Steve Jones, Sid couldn't play worth shit when he joined but started really getting behind it and practicing a lot, even taking his bass to the toilet with him to practice while he was there. Then Nancey Spungen came along...

At least he made the attempt to learn an instrument.

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