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Munamania #5 The Horror of Loud Ties

 
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Munan
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2006 9:46 am    Post subject: Munamania #5 The Horror of Loud Ties Reply with quote

The Horror of Loud Ties

Last Saturday’s newspaper had two interesting articles. One of them was about the reception of jazz music in the Netherlands during the forties and fifties. The other one was about the negative effects of popular music on modern youth. A group of American researchers has apparently discovered that children who listen to music with denigrating sexual lyrics (such as certain kinds of rap), will have sexual intercourse at an earlier age than those who don’t. The researchers came therefore to the conclusion that – since sexual intercourse at younger age is a bad thing, apparently – children should be protected from this kind of music.

The other article can be read as a warning not to jump to these kind of conclusions too quickly. In the years after the Second World War, jazz music was seen as a problem, leading to widespread moral panic in the Netherlands. ‘Heated by the rhythm, noisy, haunted, possessed i.e. weakening self-restraint and attracting feelings of sensuality and wickedness present in every human, especially in adolescents’, jazz music could easily degenerate the Dutch youth, according to a concerned Catholic priest. Apart from the sometimes blatantly racist attitude of those agitating against jazz, there was a feeling that the wickedness that this music inspired could lead to – apart from (oh, horror!) ‘loud ties’ and ‘colourful shirts’ – the end of civilization as it was known.

I’ve always liked loud ties and colourful shirts, which maybe explains ending civilisation as we know it sounds like a rather good idea to me as well. Likewise, if I would have to choose sides between a group of concerned parents pleading for censorship and some kids having a good time, I would always support the latter. I myself was a raver in the nineties and the criticism of our house was very similar to the crap told about jazz some decades before. However, when I turn on the music channel late at night and am confronted with some of the misogynic videos by rap artists, I start to wonder. Am I getting old and conservative, is it now my turn to worry about the corruption of our youth while the kids laugh about how old fashioned grandpa has become? Or is being upset about the constant referring to women as ‘ho’s’ and ‘bitches’ and depicting them as mere lust objects something quite different from nagging about colourful clothing and the possible corrupting effects of ‘negro rhythms’ on Dutch kids?
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2006 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a conversation with someone about this a while ago. We were in a club (odd place to have a serious discussion, I know), and was becoming offended by the lyrics in the music being played, claiming that it was encouraging its listeners to treat women as objects.

While I agree that there is that sort of thing in much modern music, particularly rap, and that it isn't necessarily a good thing, I think people view it the wrong way.

In truth, out of the billions of people out there, how many of them do you view as people and not as numbers?

People whom you've never met will always be objects to you. People you see, but with whom you'll never come into any other contact will only be based on a one-dimensional criteria: their appearance. People you see in images given by the media aren't going to be interesting, complex people to you, they're just going to be images, objects of lust perhaps, but nothing more, and that's not wrong; there's just a limit on the information available to you and there's a limit on how much information you can process. I see nothing wrong with viewing magazine models as objects, as long as I've never met any of them.

I do believe there is a problem, however, when prejudices are spread by popular icons of the media... but I suspect that it is a problem with more than just the media. The receptiveness of people to these messages suggests to me that the problem lies within the culture at large, human nature, or both.

A common perception in a culture that women can be bought and that men want to buy women is dangerous to men and women on more than one level. Not only are men more likely to buy into this idea and view women as property, but women are also more likely to buy into this idea too and view men as bags of money to be manipulated by the balls.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2006 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jazz isn't the same as rap. But I wouldn't lump techno or da club music with rap either. I'll start with my tirade on rap and then my thoughts on techno.

Rap. Nothing to me is more objectionable and ridiculous than rap. Bitches ain't Shit, Slob on My Knob, Ridin' Spinnas, Ridin' Dirty, Hustlin'. These are just a few examples of songs that I like in a mature way, but I don't take the shit they say to heart. Makes me think like: ~Oh, you dropped out of school when you were three years old? How come? ~ Bitch ass teachers were trying to playa hate. ~ Oh. COME ON. Life isn't about being legit and ridin' spinnas.

Rap however, is really great clubbin' music. You know it. I know it. But the problem is not clubbin' and having a good time. It's that kids nowadays take this stuff to heart and let it limit what they really can do in life. If there was a way to censor messages like Bitches Ain't Shit and Ridin' Dirty from the minds of young people, I would support it. Just like you don't teach kids how to give head in the third grade, you shouldn't let them think it's what's expected of bitches from dudes who are keeping it real.

Techno on the other hand is something that was born from clubbin'. Whatever your definition of clubbin' is, Techno came after clubbin' and all the bad things associated with Technno and clubbin' came before them both. Techno does not poison the mind of the youth. Drugs and young sex do.

About promiscuity: It's not the result of techno. Standards of decency have been lowered substantially, but have gone too far. How is techno and rap connected to this? Jazz broke down barriers that made intimacy and sex between a man and a woman indecent. Rap has gotten rid of intimacy and left just sex. Techno on the other hand is clubbin' music that doesn't preach drug use (much) and sexual promiscuity (much).

. . . I'm trying to think of something to say to conclude, but I can't. My mistake.

edit: I think I may have the loudest non-electronic tie of them all- think all the old-school XMen striking an action pose.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2006 3:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i concur. i have always been slightly unnerved by most songs that are around today. this may not seem too odd, but it is when you consider that i am 15. i have never been able to listen to any rap song all the way through, and most of the time, the messages the send out just seem obscene.
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Aramor



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2006 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After I was done working I went to the poolhouse to have a beer. They were playing rap music. And I stick to my opinion that I don't like it. I mean, what's it all about?

As most of you know, I like hard rock and metal. In most of those songs, I think there's actually something being told. Oh, and just to get this straight, this is my opinion, I will not try to shove this down someones throat as a fact, but this is how I think about it.

Right now I'm listening to Prison System by S.O.A.D. I think it certainly tells a story. So do most of the songs of Metallica. Or Rage Against The Machine. Even Bloodhound Gang, although it is mostly meant funny. But the rap I heard this evening at the poolhouse didn't really sound like it was meant to be telling anything. Besides some guy loving his bitch or something.

Uhm... ok, I'm somewhat getting the idea I'm rambling on incoherent (blame it on tiredness) but my point is that I think that rap is mostly meaningless and dull as opposed to the music I like.

Yeah...
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2006 5:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Almost all rap music has the same messege. Sex, and being a "gangsta".

I am fond of very few rap songs...
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2006 12:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a few disparate points to make:

Correlation does not equal causation, but perhaps social learning theory does have a point. I do not think that it can be beneficial for youth to be bombarded with such messages.

@Crotchfire: Yes, by necessity we must all objectify people in some sense at some times. But the concern here is that a message is being forwarded in which objectification is the only or the most advantageous path.

@Koko: Yes, it is good for dancing.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2006 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Blaster wrote:
Correlation does not equal causation.
Yet it seems every lawyer out there thinks otherwise.
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 01, 2006 1:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lawyer's think?
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2006 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interjections and Interludes in no particular order.

"As most of you know, I like hard rock and metal. In most of those songs, I think there's actually something being told."

Except for that one "hit" from Silver Chair which I can't derive anything from except that there is a "Fatboy" who has to "wait". Sure, this may be one of those exceptions, but I fail to see a good, wholesome story coming from a lot of early Maiden hits (e.g. Number of the Beast). Granted, you could say that they did, what Spinal Tap would consider a twist -- they put themselves in the objectifying scenario (e.g. The Trooper) rather than objectifying others (Smell the Glove), but I think your opinion only holds for certain groups. Another popular song, "Flying High Again" doesn't seem to tell much of a story other than abusing drugs, or a drug-like state, much like early Lou Reed's "Heroin".

I'd almost argue that most music has the same story and the culture that springs from it, emphasizes a particular point, idea or theme that is time/cohort specific.

"Almost all rap music has the same messege. Sex, and being a "gangsta"."

You forgot the cornerstone of all rap -- saying your name over and over. Also stating what you're about, yo.

"But the rap I heard this evening at the poolhouse didn't really sound like it was meant to be telling anything."

I do like MC 900 foot Jesus who sings, "Damn, I hate this job" which does tell a story. Again, this may be a single occurance, but eminem's song, "The Way I Am" also tells a story. Which goes back to the supposition that you may just be considering a small group of artists when making a blanket statement.
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Aramor



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2006 5:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Uhh yeah, I said most of those songs.

And also, I can recall I was very tired when I wrote most of the stuff I posted here... including now... and I tend to get incoherent when I post tired.

Well, at least I try to keep my spelling and grammar as perfect as possible...
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2006 5:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excuse me for my belated reactions, but I've been busy, partying and ill - in that order.

Crotchfire wrote:
A common perception in a culture that women can be bought and that men want to buy women is dangerous to men and women on more than one level. Not only are men more likely to buy into this idea and view women as property, but women are also more likely to buy into this idea too and view men as bags of money to be manipulated by the balls.


Crotchfire, I'm intrigued by your suggestion that those videos I mentioned are just a sign of a more widespread culture. Do you suggest that we should actually do something about those ideas, rather than take action against those kind of videos? And how would you go about that? Educate the masses, of course, but how? And who's responsibility should that be?

Koko wrote:
About promiscuity: It's not the result of techno. Standards of decency have been lowered substantially, but have gone too far. How is techno and rap connected to this? Jazz broke down barriers that made intimacy and sex between a man and a woman indecent. Rap has gotten rid of intimacy and left just sex. Techno on the other hand is clubbin' music that doesn't preach drug use (much) and sexual promiscuity (much).


I'm not sure I agree. I think you're right when you say techno doesn't preach anything, but that's mainly because the music has few lyrics, and if it does, it's mostly non-sensical, or light and happy stuff.

Aramor wrote:
my point is that I think that rap is mostly meaningless and dull as opposed to the music I like.


Let me not be mistaken: I really like rap music. I think an album like "It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back" is very good music with thought provoking lyrics. I love the early Busta Rhymes (not his latest album, which is filled with mediocre crap), Missy Elliot, A Tribe Called Quest, House of Pain, Snow, most Quannum records, etc.

I think the big difference between moral panic against jazz and techno and the outrage against some sorts of rap music, is that the former is rather ridiculous (mostly a variety of "the devil is in that beat"), whereas the latter has a point, because it is clear that the message that is send out by the lyrics and the videos is degrading a large group of people - women. There's certain techno videos that also have that message, and I find them equally detestable.

Quote:
If there was a way to censor messages like Bitches Ain't Shit and Ridin' Dirty from the minds of young people, I would support it.


Yes, but should we censor it, or should we make people more aware of the negativity of these messages?

wrincewind wrote:
i have always been slightly unnerved by most songs that are around today.


I haven't. I love modern day pop music. It's so fresh, so alive! What you hear on the radio these days is so much better than what was around, say, 5 or six years ago.

Blaster wrote:
Correlation does not equal causation


I'm very sceptical about these kind of researches myself. It's often financed by groups who will only accept one outcome. (oh, and Simon, I think it's mostly prosecuters and not lawyers who will propose correlation=causation, don't you think?)
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Aramor



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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2006 8:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Munan wrote:
Aramor wrote:
my point is that I think that rap is mostly meaningless and dull as opposed to the music I like.


Let me not be mistaken: I really like rap music.


That's just a matter of opinion...
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Munan
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2006 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

yes, it is, but I was afraid people had taken my column to be directed against rap music, which it isn't.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2006 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah ok, then it's all good.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2006 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's fresh.

If I didn't know English I would like rap as much as anything else. I don't like listening to guys talking about getting head and treating a woman like a piece of meat.

I understand what you were trying to say now more than I did before Munan. You basically say that people are judging the long-term and moral effects of Techno or other music too soon so they may be wrong just like the ones who sought to protect the youth from Jazz in the 40's and 50's. I can agree with that and my comments on rap weren't that important to understanding that question in a European context.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2006 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This thread's title sounds like a horror movie from the fifties.

"Good golly! It's...The HORROR of Loud Ties!"
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2006 6:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

yes, and i have a hunch that it was deliberate.
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