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Monday, 3 July 2017

The Tyranny of Pop Music



Last year we were in Debenhams whiling away a few hours while the car was being serviced. Round about lunch time I phoned the garage on my mobile to see how things were going but had not realised how loud the store's ambient music was. 

After vainly looking around for a quiet spot I ended up couching by a rack of coats with a finger in one ear. That way I could just make out what the garage had to say. No doubt the receptionist at the other end wondered why I was shouting, yet so many appear not to notice the incessant assault on our ears. Until that phone call I hadn't noticed just how loud it was. In the end, familiarity tends to breed not contempt, but acceptance.

4 comments:

Demetrius said...

Boom thump bang what is your blog saying crash yelp scream don't get it will try later. Apart from that in the last decade or two noise levels have gone up a lot. The younger generation in particular seem to need it. As someone who had a lot to do with provision for the deaf they do not realise that hearing loss is now becoming more and worse among them. Which leads them to up the levels. Also, a factor arising from the acoustic impact on a wobbly brain quite a few will have significant effects in later life. How many gardeners nowadays do much if anything without the aid of a noisy machine? What is strange is that I see people with blowers clearing paths taking double or triple the time it would take with the right brush.

Sam Vega said...

I agree with what Scruton has to say. In this, like many other things, he is right. Listen to or read him for more than a couple of minutes, though, and his articles get a bit irritating. He seems to want every sentence to be a pithy aphorism.

This leads me on to another thought. Just as we get music wherever we go, and the mind seems to seek it out under some circumstances, we also get opinions and ideas. I soak up Scruton, this blog, and dozens of other sources of ideas, with alacrity. Maybe I'm even addicted. I'm probably afraid of mental silence, which is much more profound and rare than the sort Scruton values so much.

Henry Kaye said...

he "sound of music" is a subject about which I complain most! I grew up in the 30's and 40's and liked the "pop music" of the day. I discovered Dixieland jazz and liked that. I found some songs from the early part of the century and liked them. Then I discovered Gilbert and Sullivan and really liked that. Then I went to a Prom and found I liked that. I still liked the pop music I grew up with and there I was with a large collection of different styles all of which pleased me in different ways. The past 30 years, however, it's been a different story. There's hardly a sound that has been written and performed that has pleased me in any way - and I include classical music! So far as the latter is concerned today's composers are so far apart from their predecessors of the previous three centuries that I -
untrained and unknowledgeable as I am - wonder what has caused the changes!

A K Haart said...

Demetrius - I think you are right, many young people are heading for problems with loss of hearing in later life - possibly earlier than they imagine. As for leaf blowers I don't know why people use them. Leaves are easily swept up and make excellent compost.

Sam - I find Scruton a bit irritating too, but perhaps that is because he is more lucid than I am. Sometimes he seems hesitant, but even then he is hesitantly lucid. As for the addiction to ideas, I've recently tried reading more light fiction to get away from them for a while. Old detective stories are good for that.

Henry - I'm probably like you - untrained and unknowledgeable. Even as a youngster I never liked pop music, never thought much of the Beatles and never really understood their popularity. I'm not quite sure what it is, but I think it is the beat I don't like. It feels manipulative and crude.