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Why doesn't anyone enjoy listening to (my) music???


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Initial post: Sep 6, 2012 3:19:45 AM PDT
J. Cox says:
I have this problem with all of my coworkers... They only listen to FM radio where most of the stuff played is repeated hour after hour, day after day. They are simply unwilling to listen to anything new or different. I consider myself open-minded when it comes to music... and maybe I am not the most open-minded person, but I listen to a large variety of music from all over the world.

But when I play one song from one album, within 2 minutes of a 3 to 4 minute song, I hear everyone or most everyone in the office say I don't like this song, change it. I wonder to myself how can someone determine they don't like a song within 1 to 2 minutes of hearing it? It usually takes me 3 to 7 listens to determine what song I might enjoy. When I ask them to give 1 or 2 reasons why they don't like a song, I get the most typical and stubborn answers such as... I have never heard of this artist or simply I just don't like the way it sounds. It doesn't make any sense to me to not give any song a chance. Heck, I will listen to a Nickelback song several times before deciding it's not a good song.

I guess I think that either I am a musical snob (probably) or people are so afraid of something different or new that they just ignore it. Perhaps a combination of the two.

I just don't like the idea of someone unwilling to try something they are not familiar with.

I am afraid music is dying and the radio is polluting the population with the idea that what they hear is all there is and anything that is different is bad. I am trying to figure out how to get people to at least give something different a chance.

Sorry that was long.

I am interested in other opinions on general music listening with friends / co-workers. Sometimes I just want to share the music I enjoy listening to with others.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 5:01:11 AM PDT
This is and has been an ongoing issue for a long long time. I think there are a few reasons for this. Radio is a huge villian here. I have not listened to commercial radio in many years. Luckily where I live, we have a tremendous independent radio station that plays all kinds of different music. Oldies and classic rock stations have ruined a lot of great songs for me from overkill. How many more times do I have to hear Stairway To Heaven, Sweet Home Alabama, American Pie and.... well you know the list. It's not even that I dislike these songs, I am just sick of them. Now because I stopped listening to this type of radio format I occassionally can get into an overkill song but it does not hold the same excitement for me as something I have not heard as much over the years. Another factor is many people say they are big music fans and say I listen to all kinds of music. But they don't. I consider myself a pretty well rounded music guy. I like many styles like doo-wop, blues, folk, pop, reggae, space music, hard rock, indie, and so forth. I can listen to Johnny Cash, Muddy Waters, Led Zeppelin, Neil Diamond, Tangerine Dream, Fairport Convention, Otis Redding, etc and not blink an eye. However I too have limitations. I can't stand rap or hip hop. No way I can handle opera. I don't mind classical or jazz music and I respect it but I don't collect it. But MOST people don't have nearly the wide range of taste they think they have. They tend to lean either towards a harder sound like say Jimi Hendrix or softer music say, The Carpenters. And we can keep busting it down. Many older people say there is no good music anymore. They are not willing to give new music a chance. It's an age group thing, they only like the music of their youth. Not only will they not listen to new music with open ears, but they rarely listen to music prior to their birth or very young years. As if good music was ONLY around during the years when they paid attention. Again I have my likes and dislikes. I have my time frame. I grew up in the 70's. But I my favorite period for music is the 60's. But I have not disregarded all music prior and after those 2 decades. I feel sad for people who are so narrow in their taste that they can't expand beyond the radio or what they already knew. I have tried to get people to listen to what THEY call obscure music. Once in a while I can but mostly not. I don't know how to get people to listen. I suppose you just can't. Sorry this post is so long but I feel passionate about music.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 5:17:52 AM PDT
onsenkuma says:
@J.Cox,
Many people simply don't open themselves up to experience much of ANYTHING until they're at least reasonably confident that it's been endorsed by the herd. It's no different with music, and 'twas ever thus. Over-formatting of radio playlists has been an issue at least since the early to mid '70s or so. It happened first on the AM bands, and the FM bands followed suit. Where music is concerned at least, radio has long been pretty much a lost cause.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 10:37:32 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 7, 2012 4:11:45 AM PDT
Sometimes I know instantly whether or not I like a song. Sometimes I have to listen about 4 or 5 times before I know whether or not I like a song. Some influences: I tend to be a melody person, I tend to enjoy pure vocalists best, I lean towards subject/lyrical content about love, everyday life and relationships, and I tend to lean towards soft sounds.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 10:48:17 AM PDT
C. Batty says:
But, if you listen to headphones, you don't have to talk to your co-workers.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 10:52:21 AM PDT
A customer says:
"I can't stand rap or hip hop"
Brilliant. Perfect broad generalization to prove Cox's point. Every genre, even the most bubblegum of modern manufactured pop, has its gems. Hip hop has many.

De La Soul
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0irL1M15DH8

Jurassic 5
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nMwbKzd2oyc

Digable Planets
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMgY7P4ukgQ

Anyone who claims to appreciate good music can find it if they know where to look. If those links remain untouched, that only drives the point home further.

I do have a least favorite genre of music. It's dubstep. Even with that, I can admit there are a few good songs. No genre is completely devoid of merit.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 12:58:19 PM PDT
J. Cox says:
Here's the kicker, I am the youngest in my office, most are older by a decade (I'm in my late 20s). From a general point of view, I would have thought that age likes at the very least older music and young people reject that kind of music and like Stephen Delia said, they only like music from their youth.

I try to listen to everything from the 1950s to the present, except I am working my way backwards among the genres instead of fowards. Jazz and soul music, sure. Classical and Opera, yup. Folk, Country, Americana, Blues, Bluegrass, the list goes on. And of course there is rock, metal, progressive, and even yes rap/hip-hop. I go from obscure to common. Indie or Electronic music, of course. Like Sweets To The Sweet said, leave nothing untouched.

I think I do avoid the radio for a combination of things that some have mentioned. The formatting of playlists for the radio and overplaying the same set of songs over and over again come to mind.

Well-read in music to me means variety not expertise in a particular medium.

Oh, and unfortunately headphones are out of the question for the job that I have.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 1:12:29 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 6, 2012 1:17:46 PM PDT
Pat Mahiney says:
onsenkuma,

Re: Many people simply don't open themselves up to experience much of ANYTHING until they're at least reasonably confident that it's been endorsed by the herd.

Amen. Plus, people tend to hate change (ie: anything new or different) almost as much as they hate the truth.

I listen to a lot of what would be termed "obscure" bands and artists in different genres....not because they're obscure but because they're good. I've tried to turn others on to some of it, even on these very forums, with very little success. Generally, when I've gotten people to listen I've had success....but getting them to listen seems to be the hard part....the resistance is astounding, even among those who claim to be musically open-minded.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 2:57:23 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 6, 2012 3:20:00 PM PDT
<<I just don't like the idea of someone unwilling to try something they are not familiar with.>>
However, how appropriate is to expect this at the workplace?
It is THEIR workplace as well.

<<Re: Many people simply don't open themselves up to experience much of ANYTHING until they're at least reasonably confident that it's been endorsed by the herd.>>
musical taste is pretty personal.
Nothing is worse than being forced into hearing music one doesn't like(even if one may like it eventually with deeper exposure)
Put yourself in their shoes. They are there to get their job done, not tune into your musical tastes.
How would you feel if you were trying to work and someone else decided their tunes should be the office soundtrack?

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 2:59:22 PM PDT
S. Stalcup says:
J. Cox,

If I may get all Ancient Mariner on you: Stop banging your head against the wall. You're never going to break through. When faced with thirty-one flavors the masses will opt for Vanilla, full stop. I tried doing the same thing you did back in high school. All you'll get is mental and physical abuse for your trouble.

Case in point. Hop in the Wayback Machine with me to the early 1990s. Not sure why I was doing this, but I was helping decorate the gym and someone asked if they could borrow my copy of Core by STP. Either "Sex Type Thing" or "Wicked Garden," one of the singles that wasn't "Plush" (i.e. didn't sound like Pearl Jam) came on. People lost their minds! "Turn that punker blankety-blank off." Fast-forward to "Plush," and everybody's happy because it got played on the radio. Then after it was over with, back on with Steve Miller and the Eagles.

And what decade was it again? I'll bet if I went back to a high school reunion (NEVER) they'd still be listening to the same dreck.

Don't be concerned about music dying though. As long as YOU don't lose your sense of adventure, there will always be hot water to reheat your tub. It might come out in a trickle on occasion, but as long as it's coming out of the faucet, don't worry.

Don't feel sad either if the horse by the tub won't drink the water after you've led it there.

And if they don't want to hear it, it is their loss. I underscore that. THEIR loss. Listen to it when you get off work. You'll treasure it all the more.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 3:31:47 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 6, 2012 3:36:58 PM PDT
<<And if they don't want to hear it, it is their loss.>>
maybe their priority at work is working, not expanding their musical horizons.
I worked in an environment where a coworker appointed himself to 'edify' the rest of us when it came to music.
he was constantly changing up the music, yapping off about and just really hampered the rest of us from doing our jobs.

He didn't last long for that very reason.
sometimes the best music to do office work to is not the best music to listen to.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 3:51:16 PM PDT
A customer says:
From what I'm reading, it seems as though you co-workers should just take turns where you each get to play whatever music you want when it's your "day". Someone doesn't like what you put on? Too bad. You put up with their music last Tuesday, now they have to put up with yours today. Seems only fair.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 4:06:37 PM PDT
J. Cox says:
This does not really relate to the discussion at hand. You are saying music is not appropriate for an office setting which is your opinion but does not actually contribute to the themes I was attempting to discuss which are musical open-mindedness and the lack there of. I get along just fine with my co-workers and like working with every one of them. Their musical interests are separate from my professional relationship with each of them. The office setting was simply an example, not an ultimatum. So I think you missed the point.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 4:09:29 PM PDT
J. Cox says:
"From what I'm reading, it seems as though you co-workers should just take turns where you each get to play whatever music you want when it's your "day". Someone doesn't like what you put on? Too bad. You put up with their music last Tuesday, now they have to put up with yours today. Seems only fair."

In an ideal setting, yes, that is how it should work.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 4:15:34 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 6, 2012 4:26:22 PM PDT
<<Their musical interests are separate from my professional relationship with each of them. >>
not if you continue to bring it to the professional environment of the work place.

why is it that important to you that others share your musical tastes anyway?
people like ourselves who frequent a music discussion board seem to have a far greater passion for music than the average person.
To many music just isn't all that important.
To me what other people listen to isn't all that important.
To me what I listen to shouldn't be important to anyone else.

If I start thinking "everyone should like what I like" and take it on myself to be didactic and try to 'enhance' people's lives with music I think they should like and they just aren't interested in, I'm wasting every-one's time, especially mine.

Be secure in your own tastes and quit trying to find outside validation of them.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 4:50:40 PM PDT
My thoughts on the subject here were not really aimed at music in the work place but just attitudes towards music in general. And yes, there are those of us who are into music more than the average person but the thing that's funny is many of the people that CLAIM they are really into all kinds of music are not. As I stated we all have our likes and dislikes. I don't know anyone personally who likes every single genre of music they have actually heard. But I mean people who like more than the obvious or more than a few styles. Plus I think once you discover something or someone you have not heard or paid attention to it allows you to explore some new possibilities. And there is SOOOO much out there. I am glad I don't like every genere, I couldn't possibly listen to all in a lifetime. LOL.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 5:35:23 PM PDT
pork turtle says:
Awesome post J. Cox. All I can say is that I feel your pain. Some of it has to do with the fact that it's one of those "different strokes for different folks". But I think a lot of it has to do with what you mentioned that radio has polluted the population.
However, I don't think it stops with the radio. A lot has to do with what people see on T.V. and the invention of the internet and downloading.
The culture has changed. People's attention spans have changed with it. Someone hears a song on the internet, likes that one song, and downloads it. People just don't sit down, relax and listen to entire albums, etc. anymore. It's a shame, I know but it is what it is.
Keep fighting the good fight J. Cox. Listen to whatever your heart desires. Go seek out live music. Support physical media. Try your best to deal with your coworkers tastes. ;-)

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 6:55:18 PM PDT
J. Cox says:
I don't want everyone to like what I like, I just don't like it when people dismiss music just because they haven't heard of the artist.

Pal Jacky: Once again you are making assumptions about me and once again you are missing the point. Discuss the state of music, don't discuss your assumptions about my character traits and personality. I really don't even understand how you automatically draw these conclusions about me without knowing anything about me besides my passion for music.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 6:57:44 PM PDT
J. Cox says:
I agree with Stephen Delia. People in general who claim to like all kinds of music but when push comes to shove, they dismiss anything they are not familiar with.

Indeed, there IS so much out there.But as they say, it's the journey, not the destination. If you listened to everything, what would be left?

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 7:00:41 PM PDT
S. Stalcup says:
Again J. Cox, it's their loss.

Turning the others onto stuff that's out of the ordinary or unheard of sounds great in theory, but having lived through the co-opting of college rock by the mainstream twenty years ago, the practice isn't what you'd hoped for. It ends up a bit of a Frankenstein's monster.

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 8:51:05 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Sep 25, 2012 10:38:19 AM PDT]

Posted on Sep 7, 2012 2:19:11 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 7, 2012 2:23:38 AM PDT
Hinch says:
Fortunately where I work now we have satallite radio. It's played on speakers placed all over the building I work in. It's set to change stations every half hour, so we get a variety. Everything from classic rock, country, top 40 to even reggae. Sometimes we hear the Pearl Jam, Springsteen or Jimmy Buffett channels.

I've worked at places where they had a radio in the dept or immediate work area and everyone complained if something besides the particular music they like was on. We even tried letting everyone bring in a cd. I know I've put in a cd a time or two, and only 2 or 3 songs would play before it was changed. Many people are closed minded about music they don't like, or are not familiar with.

What's really bad is when I've worked where they allow more than one person to have a radio and I was working where I could hear both radios set on different stations.

I've always tried to be open minded about music and listen to a wide variety. No one likes everything, but I'm willing to listen to music I dont care a lot about if others are willing to do the same for a while. Others don't seem to be so willing.

Another rule I have is to not say I don't like something if I haven't actually listened to it.

Posted on Sep 7, 2012 4:01:50 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 7, 2012 5:42:17 AM PDT
At my office, some people don't like to listen to music while they are working - they consider it a nuisance. So, out of respect, those that want to listen to radio or CDs, keep the volume turned down. We also don't force our music on others. If they like what you're playing, it'll happen naturally.

Posted on Sep 7, 2012 4:10:59 AM PDT
This thread keeps reminding me of the movie High Fidelity with John Cusak. The one guy makes a mixed tape and John Cusak screams for him to turn it off. LOL.

Posted on Sep 7, 2012 7:19:54 AM PDT
widowTink says:
If I tried to play MY music for any group of people I'm sure me and my ipod would be quickly escorted from the building.

I can't understand why nobody wants to hear all the classic soundtracks of Disneyland attractions (past and present) interspersed with Jimmy Buffett songs and many selections from "the golden age of light music" (some people call it "elevator music"). Oh, and some vintage tunes from the 1920's, 30's, 40's and 50's, yes even 60', 70's, 80's...oh, you get the idea. I'll listen to anything, and I give everything a chance. If I like it, if it SPEAKS to me....I'll download it. Does not matter what the genre is. I judge every piece of music I hear by it's own merit.
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Discussion in:  Music forum
Participants:  62
Total posts:  645
Initial post:  Sep 6, 2012
Latest post:  Oct 17, 2012

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