WARNING: Rant Ahead…
I know what what I am about to say is going to piss some people off and in the mood I’m in right now, I don’t give a $#!+ because it needs to be said. If a musician / artist / group / band has to overcompensate with loud distorted instruments with massive amounts of compression to cover up the lack of lyrical / singing talent, then save the money by firing the producer / mixer / Sound / Studio Engineer. Newsflash: There is a such thing as over compression! It sucks and it makes the product sound cheap. If you have someone in your studio mixing your music together and they say over compression sounds great, then use some of that money to pay for their hearing to get checked. There is a HUGE difference between compressing the loud bass of an instrument and just having your volume turned up to be loud. I actually enjoy music loud and clear.
Another reason to save that money is so to hire someone who can actually write real music / lyrics that doesn’t sound like a 5-year-old came up with it. I expect that sort of lazy, wanna-be style in C-rap, boy bands (trash), K-POP, or in TOP 40 POP. That’s all disposable and made for a quick buck for the record labels. Flash in the pan, if you will. I know it’s a cookie-cutter technique for the last decade to have the loud bass compression on the drums, but it is stupid because it doesn’t sound organic. One of the reasons I couldn’t stand Nickelback (a boy band that tries to sound metal). Music isn’t supposed to sound artificial or fake. It comes from within and even though one might think it’s all sounds, it is one of those things that is better stuck in your head than in mine.
I get the whole idea of “creative expression”, but instead of bitching, moaning, and complaining about radio stations (internet and terrestrial) not playing the music, which causes the promoter to work overtime to get at least one song played somewhere, then the problem isn’t with the the medium. No, it’s the source. Have you ever heard the expression, “garbage in, garbage out”? It’s a very universal thing. You see, instead of telling yourself that “nobody understands the creative process”, maybe focus on what the product itself. If it is that important to have it played, find out what makes the person click “off” or “next” when the song comes out the speakers. Chances are that if the song is over compressed, that could be the culprit and needs to be reproduced or remixed.
While I’m on the subject, if the vocals are too low and/or not good sound quality, that’s a “turn off” for a lot of listeners too. Clap Tracks, POP sound effects, and music beds doesn’t belong in Country music, especially Red Dirt / Texas Country! I understand that there are singers who just want to sing and they don’t care what category / genre they are in as long as they can get in. To me, that is a slap to everyone who created, nurtured, and support Red Dirt / Texas Country. It should be the same feeling for those in Traditional Country as well. I’m not a musician, so my opinion probably can be used for toilet paper. I feel that now is a great time to re-evaluate the product, as a whole, and make the changes before full-scale tours can resume.
If an artist needs a tool to help them understand why their music isn’t getting played as much on radio stations, perhaps they need to ask their promoters to look into what is actually working on radio. If it’s a second opinion on a demo that is needed, if I got the time, I will be willing to help. There needs to be more integrity in the music. As much as I can’t stand Neil Diamond, he at least understood the importance of sound quality that attracts the most listeners. Even Michael Jackson and Prince had music that people from all across the spectrum appreciated. Billy Joe Shaver and Steve Earle, they all understand this. It’s the difference between C-rap and Rap. I’m glad to see there are more bands that put the “AW YEAH” back in Hard Rock / Heavy Metal again (God Bless FOZZY), but I really think it’s beyond time to put the “O” back in Country.