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Blindness … & Now I See

August 7, 2015

 

Blindness is not merely a function of the cornea processing no light. It has philosophical dimensions as well, where perception is distorted and truth is hidden through a lens of fiction and purposely-built distraction. What is pixel- framed by modern media feeds our insecurities and our fragile perceptions, thus becoming the basis for how we define truth. We have been manufactured today to ignore what we know, what we sense with all senses, instead being reduced to prioritizing one ambience, one frame, one compartment. 

 

Listening has been subverted by watching, hearing has been subverted by forced acceptance. "The truth" is no longer represented through hard-fought personal victories driven by a thirst for enlightenment, but rather something that is fed to us in grandiose and plagiarized fragments prepared for mass consumption by a group of gatekeepers eager to control political, financial, and socio-creative dimensions for their own profit. We are often blind to these subverting effects, guilty of not posing enough questions, instead acting quietly obedient to the thoughtless constraints and diminishment of personal freedoms built into such actions. This feature of the modern aesthetic is remarkably well represented in the world of music.

 

Music is highly reflective of this singular approach, of forcing thought into the lowest common denominator, pushing aside width and depth for "the quick fix". As a producer, I am constantly challenging my artists to overcome these distractions, and connect meaningfully with their fans. But as a hired musician, I find myself sometimes adding to the problem, collecting a check in exchange for adding my skill set to remrkably mediocre music.  Fighting this fight is becoming increasingly difficult, more and more artists are beholden to the potential delights of fame, even if it is short-lived, without taking into account the wider effects of dumbing down their art.  

 

All musicians are complicit, and I count myself among them.  This short-term mindset benefits only a small group of beancounters, the bulk of the social cost is still shouldered by the unknowing fans and the artists that feed them.  Which, perhaps, is how great art is born ... a new phoenix rising from the ashes.  Hardship, disillusion, clarity drawn from the reinvention of social views. Maybe our modern complacency is driving the future's new. Only time will tell. 

 

 

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"Ron Thaler is an artist, an exceptionally gifted drummer and musician. His talents as a record producer and songwriter make him uniquely wonderful to collaborate with."

 

-- ZAK SOULAM (guitarist Suzanne Vega, KC & Jojo, TransSiberian Orchestra)

The Official Website of Music Producer, Drummer,  & Songwriter Ron Thaler

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