I love music, all types of music. The definition of good music is very personal. Not only is music a very personal thing, is it something that can change with our moods, and surroundings.
When I am driving with the windows down on a hot summer day, only the loudest of hard rock will do. Winding down, thinking about the tasks at hand, a little smooth jazz does the trick.
With music such a subjective topic, it is easy to see how we sometimes limit ourselves to different genres of music, which keeps us from discovering new groups, new songs, and new sounds.
With the internet, I can quickly research artists, and sample new songs with every passing personal whim. Likewise, while driving, I can easily explore genres that I usually ignore, with services such as XM Radio. Spending my whole life in technology I sometime get frustrated that I work in the field, but I don't spend enough time enjoying technology myself. The one area that I do try to indulge in as much as I can, is using modern technology like XM Radio, and Napster, in the exploration of music.
The sweet spot of my personal tastes in music lies within the genre known as Progressive Rock. For those of you not into the definitions, this would be groups like Jethro Tull, Electric Light Orchestra, Yes, and Kansas. Progressive Rock usually has more complex music than traditional rock and often uses concept albums to tell stories.
True Progressive Metal seems to get a bit lost in the shuffle. Not necessarily the wild head banging style of traditional heavy metal, but just a bit too wild for the usual Progressive Rock crowd. Like its close cousin Progressive Rock, Progressive Metal often uses concept albums to tell stories.
Listening to XM Radio stations like Deep Tracks, I learn more and more every day about artists I enjoyed back many years ago. Listening to some of the other classic rock stations, songs that were distant memories, are revived and refreshed in my consciousness.
I have a few stacks of old vinyl albums that I am slowly but surely going through and converting to digital formats. But everyday I am rediscovering artists that I only vaguely knew from back in the 60's, 70's, and 80's. Napster's library of songs is pretty amazing, it has grown quite a bit over the years. What's equally amazing, is not only how many of the classic rock tunes are available, but how many are being digitally remastered. The tunes sound great on the Sync system in the car. I would have never would have believed it a few years ago if you told me that I was going to buy a car with a "Powered by Microsoft" logo inside of it.
Maybe I am the exception to the norm, but the digital age has caused me to buy more music legitimately, not less. I'm sure many of these artists have already made their millions on these tunes, but out of respect to the musicians, I legitimately download the songs from Napster, through my monthly download allowance with my subscription. In some cases I'll use Napster to download a few tracks of an artist for my own mix of select classics. In a few cases, where I want more than a few tracks, I will search for the CD's to purchase.
Much like section on movies, and the philosophies they represent, my musical explorations are not meant to be a guide to any specific genre, but in the true spirit of this website, to draw attention to the topics, and provoke some thought.
The philosopher of today is not necessarily wearing a robe and sandals, but very possibly could be playing a guitar or a piano, as the social messages of our day are delivered through our music. The ballad is the vehicle of the modern day philosopher.
Copyright Tom Peracchio, Guru 42, A guru is a spiritual teacher, 42 is the Answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything.