When I first got into the Hype Machine, I thought it was genius. An aggregator of music blogs that generates a “Top Ten” list every week. Decentralised, not dependent on skewed radio air play or impossible record sales. I discovered new musicn on HypeM, listened to what everyone else was digging on, clicked on the little heart next to the songs and bands I wanted to support. One of my tweets adds 60 points to the chart! Why? I have no idea!
After the novelty wore off, something struck me: cleverness aside, I didn’t want to spend that much time listening to Madonna/The Who and Norotious B.I.G/Miley Cyrus mashups. I wanted to listen to songs the way songwriters created them: not a remix, mashup or basement redux. As musician in a band, I know how much time, effort and resource goes into writing and recording an album. Shouldn’t that effort be recognised, rather than someone else’s whimsy, territorially pissed all over a track?
I propose two lists: 1) original tracks, and 2) everything else. Call me old fashioned. But we, the people, have been ravaged enough by the downloading and file sharing and the like. Now some song feat. the vs. remix mashup edit club version gets more attention than the song itself. How do you split the mechanicals on something like that?
Just kidding. I’m being a raving old person. Stodgy, impatient, unwilling to accept the obvious change that is happening right before my eyes. I really don’t care: I still read the Hype Machine charts, and vote for my friends. As if the politics of high school never ended.
Art inspiring art. A lyric, a beat, a riff, encouraging someone else to keep going, to keep writing, to continue that piece of art. Non-monetized, positive vibes, good times. “Why should I listen to just one song when I can listen to two at the same time?” Ah, in the year 2000.
As an afterthought, I find it ironical (fake word that I use all the time -ed.) that Google recently shut down a bunch of music blogs that share MP3s, while the entire Hype Machine model is based on blogs that share MP3s. Google just didn’t want to deal with the digital mechanicals, I bet.