Are Music Fanatics a Dying Breed?

This is interesting take from a guest post on Hypebot.  The theory put forth is that because music is so ubiquitous and so easy (and cheap) to access, are old-school music fanatics dying out?

Before you answer, read the post.  

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I tend to agree simply because it’s easier to be a music fan than ever before.  The personal sacrifices that used to define music fanaticism–lining up overnight for tickets, photocopying your ‘zine, going to midnight record release parties–are all unnecessary today.  The inconveniences that were once a right of passage for any rock fan have been made obsolete by technology.

This does not mean the end of the music fanatic.  You have to be hardcore if you’re going to live in the mud at a rock festival.  Feeding a vinyl fetish comes with inherent difficulties.  Travelling from city to city following your favourite band’s tour requires commitment.  Getting into collectables is time-consuming and expensive.

It’s just that in general, today’s fanatics don’t have to work as hard. And isn’t that a good thing?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

2 thoughts on “Are Music Fanatics a Dying Breed?

  • October 7, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    I would agree there is a tendency for the Internet to breed a "you vs US" attitude toward music listening. Discussions quickly turn into fights, and then it isn't long before Hitler or some other awful tactic is brought in. (I find this is especially bad if you admit you are a female fan. It doesn't take long before blowjobs are mentioned.)

    The best place for music discussions is at concerts now-a-days. You have something in common with the people around you already, and people are too stoked to be super negative.

  • October 8, 2012 at 1:56 am

    It is much easier, for all those reasons and more. Take bootleg collecting for instance. In the past (when I first started in 1990), there were only a couple ways you could build a collection – either from going to record shows and spending a small fortune, or making connections at said record shows and trading through the mail. With the Internet, life got slightly easier as you were able to e-mail your lists to others and set up trades that way. Fast-forward to now… a band plays a show, the fan literally has a recording IN THEIR POSSESSION 24-48 hours later thanks to people sharing through bittorrent. In the past, if I had a show within a few months, that was stellar turnaround time. People's respect and appreciation for this form of music collecting has most certainly plummeted in our instant-gratification society, and this instant-gratification component is what is killing music fanaticism in general.


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