The other day as I was scrolling through the vast wasteland known as Facebook I decided to finally click on some of the music being offered up by my Facebook “friends”,
One of them was a female country singer. Judging by her website she was probably a touring regional semi-national independent artist.
I clicked through the link and listened to her first song. It wasn’t bad. The musicians were adequate and her voice was pretty good. But the song’s arrangement, production and lyrics were boring. They were simple but they were boring.
What I mean by boring is that it did nothing to grab me. I listened for about 45 seconds. I wasn’t offended, it was very listenable but I kept waiting for something to catch my ear, something to make me want to keep listening all the way to the end.
Next I clicked on a local all female band who I follow to see where the gigs are located. I have never really listened to anything they have put on the web because they never really gave me a compelling reason to listen.
Again it was “OK” but everything about it from production to musicians was “local” and what I mean by that is amateur. Nothing came close to catching my ear or being interesting. No mood, no emotion, nothing.
I listened for about 15 to 20 seconds. That was all I needed to hear.
I didn’t venture any further in my Facebook land listening experience. Those two were enough.
Later on that evening I go down to my office to practice. For some reason I always turn on the television. It just makes me feel better. It must go back to my childhood when television was the babysitter.
There was a documentary playing and it was about Bob Mould.
I had never heard of him or if I did I sure didn’t remember his name. Thanks to the internet I found out he was probably about my age and in the Punk era from the late 70’s and into the early 80’s.
I’m not a fan of punk but I watched because there was someone who looked to be my age playing.
I found his music to be very simple but it grabbed me from the very first bar of the song. I listened not because I was waiting and hoping to hear something good, it was good right from the first note. I couldn’t help but stop and listen.
His singing wasn’t that of some polished vocalist just your average rock and roll singer, but the groove was infectious. What was being laid down was raw and powerful. It grabbed me and it wouldn’t let go.
So when you’re making a record and you are sitting back and listening to it be honest, does it grab you from bar one and never let you go?
It’s all about the groove.
© Otis P Smith and About the Groove, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Otis P Smith and About the Groove with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.