The best way to know if art is evolving or degrading over time, is to examine what was popular before and what is popular now. Set aside time to do an examination of Pop Music from earlier eras, then listen to current Pop Music. Examine musicianship, lyric content, intonation (without mechanical assistance), harmonic and rhythmic complexity, instrumental and vocal agility/proficiency and composition. In general, our current popular music - for lack of a better way of describing it - has grown LESS SMART - and because of this, our music loving brains are not being stimulated properly. 


There has been a steady ‘dumbing-down’ and this should make all of us very sad (and maybe even worried?) With this said, there certainly IS some outstanding music being made today by outrageously talented musicians, but it is less easy to find than in earlier decades. Something wonderful and very special to humanity is dying and that is an emergency. 


We (music lovers) who cherish the healing, transformative, human-unifying power of music can make a difference!


FACT: Music will only be as good as its listeners are appreciative, and to be fully appreciative of anything, one must have a sense of what went into making it.


Slight side track: A long time ago comedian Conan O’Brien had a segment during the Olympic games where regular people attempted various sports alongside Olympians, including Conan himself trying to simply stand on a snowboard. It was of course all done for laughs but was also an excellent way to further enhance spectator appreciation. Here are some reasons music “spectators” expect less now than before:


-Most people had the opportunity to study music in school. This included singing, playing instruments and music history/appreciation

-A greater number of people used to be able to read music

-People used to write songs for fun

-Families and friend groups used music making as a form of at-home entertainment

-People used to go social dancing as a regular form of entertainment

-People sang together so often for fun that they knew how to naturally harmonize (something that is still common in other parts of the world) The USA comes in first place as least musically knowledgeable and most tone deaf. Let’s fix this now - we CAN do better!


  1. Visit yard sales, thrift stores, go on Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist, find cheap or free instruments - especially but not only pianos and guitars -  and give them to people as gifts! Bring some home for your family. When people own instruments they play with them and create. Making music is healthy and fun at EVERY level. 
  2. Sing to your babies
  3. Sing to your children 
  4. Sing to your parents
  5. Sing together with friends and family
  6. Sing in the car and in the shower and whenever you want to feel good
  7. Get a Karaoke machine on eBay
  8. Support music programs from early education through college and attend school shows!
  9. Find out how to vote in a way that increases funding for the professional arts as well as arts education
  10. Support the formation of music unions
  11.  Learn to sing a song in a different language
  12. If you subscribe to having a place of worship, sing out, and encourage others to do so
  13. Check out what jam sessions, drum or singing circles have to offer
  14. Consider joining a community band or choir
  15. Write a song for fun, or give it to someone as a gift!
  16. Put your favorite music on and dance first thing in the morning or after dinner time, free your body and mind, even if all alone
  17.  Go out dancing alone or with friends, try 100 different styles!
  18. When deciding on your vacation and entertainment budget, consider less emphasis on things like Vegas, Cancun or Walt Disney World, and more emphasis on attending concerts, jazz festivals, local shows, dance performances, operas, symphonies and musicals 
  19. Make a point of going on YouTube once a week and check out a type of music you’ve never listened to before
  20. Support local musicians! 

This blog was lovingly inspired by Shannon, Jenifer, Savannah & Jordan Mudd

 (Photo with permission RDNE)

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