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November 27th, 2013 / 12:56 pm
Mean

Comments About an Article About Comments

NMSlate

At Slate, Carl Wilson wrote brilliantly about Youtube comments and Stephanie Barber’s book, Night Moves, a transcription of the Youtube comments to Bob Seger’s song “Night Moves.” Here are the comments from that article:

Youtube aside, Bob Segar is truly one of the greats. Soulful, rockin’ and a great songwriter. One of the few who is equally believable as an all out rocker and as a tender, wistful balladeer. One of the greatest singers ever. He deserves to be mentioned in the same breath with Sam Cooke, Sinatra, Ella, Elvis and Aretha.
Coincidentally, Bob Segar was my very first real rock concert. I was 15 and I was blown away.
Side point to address the old vs new music conversation downthread: It is true that I will never experience music like I did with my 15 year old heart and all my musical memories are filtered through that 15 year old head that I lived in.
But now, I can listen to music with a knowledge and an understanding that I didn’t have then.
And I love that old stuff, but there is great new stuff too!
The Shins, Blind Pilot, Death Cab, Bob Schneider, Uncle Lucius, Black Keys, fun. and lots of others. Some will say that some of these are too derivative, but all music is derivative.
Sinatra, Thelonius Monk, Abba, Segar there are many, many more great musicians, singers, producers and songwriters in every generation.
To dismiss the current or the old as crap is the mark of a philistine who doesn’t really love music. They only love what music represents to them. Their youth,
And that applies equally to the fogies and the kids.
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See, I always heard this on the radio as night NEWS.  I knew what the song was about. I just figured he was banging the girl working on the school newspaper with him.
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“Like” if Dear Prudence brought you here! ; )
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Don’t believe those sad YouTube comments, it’s a specialty thing some people do. People who are looking for attention.
Also, don’t believe any of the many, many people who claim to be descendants or cousins of the featured artists.
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Any of them? Really? You know this to be fact?
Look, I’m sure there are lots of attention whoring trolling sad sack impersonators on the comment sections, but there surely are also the sincere. What’s more, even if the commenter is not on the up and up, the feelings they are expressing are truth for someone.
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Yeah, but the system has deteriorated rapidly ever since Google forced the creaky, ancient Google+ system on Youtube.  Now we get debacles like d*ck pics showing up in the comments for a MARU VIDEO, of all things.  Google is freaking horrible; I am so sick of them.
On the other hand, the awfulness of the new system solves a problem for me, and that is getting mired in commenting over there.  Now I just watch the videos, download the ones I like, and ignore the comments altogether.
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I like this article.  I really do.  Thanks, Carl.
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Carl Wilson and I must be on completely different wavelengths. I can’t follow anything he writes. It’s like reading Middle English.
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This was a Slate article like 8 years ago, I remember it!
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Stephanie Barber must be a very brave lady to slog through the you tube comments.  awful horrible and worse than that.  Grew up with Rock and Roll.  Night Moves is a great song.
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75 page “transcription”? What, cut and paste?
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It’s all in the arrangement of the            white space.
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Not great, Bob!
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Is Margaux Williamson that chick from How Should a Person Be?
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@Not great, Bob! Yep
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A little more difficult to find nuggets of wisdom, sadness and trolling on YouTube with the requirement of a Google+ account reducing anonymity.
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Yeah, now there’s a whole new batch of problems with weird ASCII spam and like that showing up.
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The funniest comments are from the people who think that today’s music is as good as music from the 1970′s.
It’s like saying that a piece of poo with icing on it is as good as a real chocolate cake.
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no, the most pathetic are actually from dinosaurs who haven’t listened to anything after John Bonham died and just keep commenting “music is such crap today”
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I was never a listener of Led Zeppelin.  There was only one song of theirs that I ever liked.  Music started to fade fast after 1993 or so.  Viva La Vida by Coldplay was the last hurrah.  Bonham died long before the heyday of the 1980′s and 1990′s.
You are a very bigoted person if you assume that all of us old timers were Led Zeppelin fans, which you obviously do.  Maybe you should get to know people before you profess to know what they think.
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I am indeed a bigoted person – especially after reading that you view Coldplay’s Viva La Vida as the swansong of “good” music.
blech
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The music since 2008 has been total poodle poo and you know it.
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Ahhh dont be so darned literal. I think he was simply stating that too many people only think good music came out when they were in their teens & early 20′s and they never look out to see new exciting bands. He used Zepplin as a touchstone, but he could have said “since The Beatles broke up” or “Since Elvis got fat” or “Since Kurt Cobain shot himself”…
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I think I’m like most forty-somethings when I say music no longer has the impact on me that it used to. I miss it. I sometimes listen to my old Rush or U2 albums from the 80s and try to recapture (remember) how they used to make me feel.
I think people just lose their sense of wonder about music as they age.
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Whatever you listen to when you’re young will always be the standard by which you judge all other music.
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I agree.  I would love to “discover” a new up and coming band that blows my mind like some of my favorites back in the day, but I don’t think it’s going to happen.  I think the last new band that I was really excited about was The White Stripes.
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Everyone thinks music from their time was the best.  Classic rock was hated by the people who liked both bebop and standards jazz.  Then the same classic rock fans hated disco, punk, and new wave.
There are a lot of good performers out there today, but you have to “get” why the music is appealing, which, at the least, takes some will.
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This last point you made is important. It takes some work to discover new music. You can’t just sit back and let the music come to you.
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indeed, and true of all art I would say
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There’s always been “good” music; and there’s always been “bad ” music.  The trick is to sift one out from the other.  Not as easily done as said.
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You sound like my grandfather (and so do I sometimes)!  70s music was one long stream of trash, noise!  The Beatles signaled the end of decent music (er, maybe it was Elvis, or Sinatra, no it was Crosby).  The “Golden Age” of everything has always been “yesterday, when I was young”!
If you think things have just gone down hill, since you were a teen, take a look at what Socrates said about Plato’s generation.
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Thomas All music made since I was a young man is terrible.
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The era of great music is whenever you turn 18, plus or minus 6 years. Everything from before that time period is ancient dinosaur fossil geezer music, and everything from after that time period is the damn crap the kids listen to
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Actually, this Is only true of people who don’t really listen to music for its own sake.
Most people listen to music as a cultural signifier to indicate where they fit in the social order of their world. Actual quality of music (which is, admittedly very subjective) is not really that much of a consideration.
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Considering something a “great” song simply out of nostalgia is just sad. I guess if hearing a song reminds you of happier times, fine, but that doest mean it’s great music. It’s simply music that was around when you were having a great time.
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Hindsight is always 20/15 – history has culled out all the schlock that was pumped out all those years ago and we’re left with the few tunes that were worthwhile. A few songs from each era survive usually because they are exactly what good music should be: transcendent.  This happens throughout music history and will continue to happen though it is sometimes difficult to tell who will survive.
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I’m probably older than you and I find your comment silly. Look, this is just your opinion, and it is clearly an opinion that is not based on actually listening to a lot of current music.
Consider this. Maybe the music being made now is not made for you. It is made for the generation that came after you, and you just can’t get into it. I can accept that.
Keep in mind too, that your opinions about how awesome music was back in the day are colored by the fact that you were young and stupid in the way that all young people are kinda stupid.
You will never experience new music the way you did when you were sitting in your bedroom when you were 15, or the way you experienced it when you were 25, half drunk and having the time of your life with your friends.
Just a thought.
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My favorite Youtube comment: “Nobody goes fishing with Skrillex. He always drops the bass”

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