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BLOG: Tribute to the human element

Anushkar Mohinani | Feb. 22, 2012
Foo Fighters frontman, in his Grammy Award acceptance speech, honoured the “human element” of music that has lost its place in the digitally advanced industry.

When Foo Fighters won an award at the 54th Grammy's recently, the band’s frontman Dave Grohl said in his acceptance speech that the award was special to him because it was a testament to the “human element” of music.

He said the band had recorded the album in his garage instead of heading to a studio with the “fanciest computers”.

Grohl said: “Singing into a microphone and learning to play an instrument and learning your craft is the most important thing for people to do….. It’s not about what goes on in a computer.”

The world around us has experienced profound changes with great technology advances. This too is the case for the music industry.

But instead of changing for the better, music, as with other art forms, has arguably lost its essence and authenticity, and this is precisely what Grohl was highlighting.
In an attempt to seek perfection or perhaps conceal their lack of talent, many artists rely on pitch correction (I say manipulation) technology.

How many of us have heard singers that sound perfect when we download their songs and then get the shock of our lives when they perform live?

The proliferation of digital recording technology and software is pushing terrible singers to stardom, stealing the show of real talent and butchering the art of musicianship. 

Modern pop music is also becoming synthesised and homogenous as a result.

The Huffingtonpost reported a statement by Grohl who elaborated on what he meant by the ‘human element’ of music. He said that it is “that thing that happens when a song speeds up slightly, or a vocal goes a little sharp. That thing that makes people sound like people.”

In the statement published by the news website Grohl also said: “I try f****** hard so that I don't have to rely on anything but my hands and my heart to play a song.”

And boy did they ‘rock their hearts out’ in their epic Grammy performance.


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