Our discussion about genres led straight into one about authenticity – a concept that has always been hard to define and is becoming increasingly more difficult as dance music takes center stage. For a generation of new fans, the problem might not be immediately apparent but the issue is that there is a whole lot of mediocre making it harder to find ‘the good.’ And how do you know when you’ve found what’s good or authentic? Well, that certainly seems part of the game – as Josh put it, “Authenticity is one of those things that the closer to you get to it, the further you know you are away from it.” Think of your musical journey. As your tastes developed, phase after phase, you probably redefined what was “good” in your book many times.
To give me a more real world example – Josh and Dave pointed us to Nirvana. Yes, the iconic genre-defining Seattle group. To them and for a lot of people, Nirvana was a defining moment in musical history – defining what was ‘good music’ for that era. It may sound like a silly distinction to make, but there’s a reason you still hear Nirvana played daily on 94.7 or 107.7. That music defined a period of time and gave birth to so much more. Josh is waiting for that Nirvana moment to hit dance music. Or, in Dave’s words:
The system is broken… It’s now “Who has the loudest voice?” “Who has the biggest budget?” “Who has the strongest brand?” That’s what’s working right now. It’s gonna take that Nirvana moment.
We’ll add to that – when it comes to seeing artists live, it’s also about who has the biggest stage presence. In so many cases, the shows that sell out are the ones that have the craziest lights and visual FX. People hear with their eyes and while we aren’t criticizing the amazing, often artistic stage shows – it is sadly often a way to get away with mediocre music.
This year, Electric Daisy Carnival is offering a $2,000 Platinum level package for a single night. That’s without “one-of-a-kind” add-ons. Josh wasn’t shy in telling us that he felt this “exemplifies everything that is wrong with dance music.” Dave assured us that this trend has been building for well over a decade, and that “It does not show signs of abating.” This isn’t the first time we’ve touched on the glamorous side of the dance music scene and it probably won’t be the last.
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