Destroying An Entire Library of Music
This has popped in and out my head for the past five years. I always got scared of doing it, because I have so much that I will never, ever find again. I do not have much “popular” stuff, and some of these songs took me weeks to find. Some I’ve lost forever because a site went down or an artists disappeared.
But here is an extremely big experiment thats been playing in my head for so long:
I’ve grown up with depressive, angry, awe-striking music. Chevelle, deftones, 30 seconds to mars, etc. That genre of music (of the popular ones). Then I transitioned into all electronic. About 75% of my library has no vocals.
But listening to my music sets me in a very specific mind set. It will always put me there, and I sometimes want to go there, sometimes I want to get out. Over all, I don’t think its a healthy, ultra productive place to be, and the music is here solely to bring me there.
So, I thought what would happen if I changed all of my music, forever. Never going back to the old stuff. I would lose something like 50 bucks of actually paid for, the rest being generally free or pirated.
But then I would start all over. Scouring for free downloads of off-the-grid music, paying for the best of the best, but adopting a completely new, euphoric, happy, genre.
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It’s not a bad way to go about things. On occasion my laptop will die and I’ll get a new one on warranty, having to start new iTunes libraries each time. My music is, of course, backed up onto an external hd, but I see no reason to re-add it each time.
Lately I’ve not even been downloading music; simply streaming and generating personal playlists online on sites such as hypem.com. This way, I’ve found, the music flows in a much more organic manner; my soundtrack is ever changing as I find new artists.
It can be hard to let go, no doubt, but there is worth in doing so.
@ijesuschrist, Haha I’ve had the same exact thoughts go through my head. And i had the same exact taste in music as you originally besides the electronic stuff and more existential/melancholic. I sometimes like going back to it too. Here’s an experiment for you to try though that has been interesting for me: you know how when you listen to an old song and it illicits a specific conditioned feeling/emotional state within you? Well try to listen to those old songs with new ears. Just listen, and see if any new vibes or feelings come up. I’ve been doing this a lot recently and sometimes those old songs sound completely new and different and even have different meanings. Sometimes a change in perception can be even bigger than changing the actual music
@ijesuschrist, Regardless of what you do, just stop listening to 30 Seconds to Mars. No one should put themselves through music that bad.
Tbh I think this says more about you than it does about the music. I fucking love the Deftones and they never make me miserable or are a band I turn to when I’m feeling down. Same applies to other favourites such as Alexisonfire, Converge, Underoath, Gallows etc
Music is interpretative. If you don’t like it then just don’t listen to it. But don’t “quit” a genre because it causes you to dwell on stuff. It’s pretty standard to listen to angry music because you’re an angry teenager but it doesn’t mean that the music is just a phase.
But, as I said, if you just don’t like it anymore then don’t listen to it. It’s that simple.
Death of a thing that has nestled too much into our psyche is never a bad thing. After a point it becomes a vice. I say junk it!! Anything that doesn’t give you the feel-goods all the time needs to GO! Everything else is holding you back from all the other amazing music choices out there. People grow whether they like it or not, and will hold onto things familiar when they sense it and are afraid to let go. But you’re here on the fence, so go grow!
I was the same as you, grew up on metal, it ended up getting into deathcore during high school until about my junior year. I ended up switching to electronic and jam bands, so I cleared out a lot of my metal. I’m still keeping around my very favorites just in case I ever feel the need to listen to them again.
It definitely puts me in a different kind of mood. Which is why I don’t really listen to it anymore, I feel at least for me that it just makes me focus on all of the negative attributes about life and in turn kind of feeds into the ego. When instead of that, I could be listening to something that could be taking me to another planet.
I just had a very similar conversation with a friend of mine. I up until pretty recently listened to bands such as tigers jaw, balance and composure, bane and down to nothing ect. but I noticed damn near every time I listen to them I get a negative feeling, I’m in the same boat as you here because I to enjoy the sound of music these bands produce but their lyrics are depressing to me.
Now maybe this occurs because that is what my reaction is to the memory of this type of music when I got into these bands years ago I was in a very different mind set ( I thought I had a self, I was feeding my ego) than I have been recently which brings me to my point… If I think I would be better off with out something I enjoy then I’m going to get rid of it and move on I’ve been learning it’s good to only let positive things through your ears and eyes and only positive will come. So I say give it a try because you can’t miss something you don’t grasp tightly to. Erase it all that’s what I did and I don’t feel like I’ve lost anything for doing so (:
@ijesuschrist, when I was in high school, I accidentally left my entire collection of CDs in the bathroom. Needless to say, they were mostly gone when I ran back to get them. I’ve always been an eclectic music connoisseur and I was crushed to not have all my favorite music anymore (this was like 30 – 40 CDs that I actually paid for).
Long story short, it was liberating! Even though I started off depressed and trying to recreate my collection, I believe the whole experience led me to better music in the end.
Try your experiment and see where it takes you. Hell, you can always come to HE and ask for musical suggestions. I’m sure you’ll find some dope tunes.
@tigerlily, Tigers Jaw ftw!
I think it’s all circumstantial tbh. For example; I love La Dispute, but I remember waiting for my mate in the rain one morning hungover as hell and listening to them just thinking “Fuck this, these guys are depressing and I want to die”. Did the music play a part? Fuck yeah it did. But it was only a part. The other factors were the terrible weather and the fact that my liver was rotting and my mouth tasted like an ashtray.
Had I been well rested and walking in the sun I’d probably be air-guitaring down the street (I subconsciously do this sometimes. It can be awkward).
I guess I’m saying that the music seems to be relating to you on a deeper level because of other things happening in your life. This is completely understandable, but “quitting” it doesn’t solve the other things. Fix the real problems and keep on thrashing :)
@ijesuschrist, I have felt like this in the past, I guess I was stuck in something of a musical rut. I grew up listening to mostly metal and rock, and it definitely takes you to a different head space. A few years ago the last cd player in the house broke, and I was way to lazy to copy 200 odd CDs, so started looking elsewhere. I discovered some chilled out acoustic stuff, looked more into the label, Ninja Tune, and found a little bit of everything. Really opened my eyes musically.
I still occasionally listen to some old tunes, but more for reminiscing, so I would suggest you keep a few select tracks or albums. It makes me feel pumped rather than aggressive or inward like it sometimes did in the past. It’s kind of cool how music can remind you how much you’ve changed.
@staylucky, I wholeheartedly agree he should stop listening to 30 seconds to mars… But by that reasoning, it’s only fair that you ditch Underoath as well. ;)
@edwardbernays, Why should you assume he’d go back to the same music? I see little to no likelihood of that happening.
@ijesuschrist, If you’re looking for uplifting music, nothing is quite as happy as the Bee Gees.