What's the Roll of Rock Today?
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Last night an apparent 5.67 million viewers tuned in for the 35th instalment of the BRIT Awards at London’s 02 Arena. The Brit's first began back in 1977 and has supplied us with some famous and infamous moments over the years. Previous winners on the night have included The Beatles, Eurythmics, Oasis, The Verve and Ed Sheeran.
In this day and age social media is a very powerful tool when it comes to gauging people’s opinions on events such as The Brit’s and music in general. A lot of comments flying around the web since last night, aside from Madonna’s unfortunate fall, have centred around the lack of characters in the current crop of top end UK artists and the question of "Has rock and roll died a death?"
Another question for you could be does the Brits and shows like X-Factor provide an accurate picture of modern day music in the UK? Sadly, the answer appears to be yes.
One reason for this has to be down to everything being available at the touch of a button, whether it be smart phones, the internet or cable TV. This has made a lot of us more complacent when it comes to our own musical tastes and has pushed many of us down the path of just following the crowd. Yes there is always going to be a varied range of musical tastes and this is normal and very healthy for music on the whole. What isn’t healthy is people becoming more reliant on manufactured programmes to tell you what you should be listening to and what you should be spending your own money on. Why should these shows be the gospel on all things music within the UK, and further afield for that matter? For every Saturday night spent sitting in watching these types of programmes, there is live music venue down the road with a musician in need of some local support.
Musicians, young and old, have got to start somewhere and it’s usually in a pokey wee bar with only a handful of punters, most of them being the bar staff. They aren’t all stuck together with glue courtesy of a television programme or suddenly dropped onto the main stage at Glastonbury. They get there with a mixture of hard work, luck and the support of people buying their music and turning up to see them in the flesh.
So, what is the 'Roll of Roll' today then? One thing’s for sure, rock and roll is not dead. Royal Blood gave us a small snippet of that last night and the Arctic Monkey’s likewise in 2014. It’s merely bubbling away under the surface, currently stifled by ‘popular’ music and waiting for that moment to return to the surface and capture the imagination of the UK public once again. Remember when the British rock n roll scene invaded the U.S. in the sixties? Music is a lot like fashion, it comes in cycles.
With that said, if you really want to have yourself some modern day rock n roll and help do your bit in pushing the genre back up the musical ladder, then step away from your television set and get out there to support local music in your area.
You never know, you might just find exactly what you’ve been looking for all along…