Comment

Pointless classification and proscription of music

(August 01, 2017)

Will the pointless classification and proscription of music never go away? Still I encounter the hidebound, stuck-in-a-rut views that say folk music begins and ends here, rock starts here, blues has 'this or that' boundary, jazz has no place in folk, pop is not art ... name your prejudice ... it just continues. No matter how persuasively you debate the subject, the chance of getting beyond the fast-bolted doors of Mr and Mrs Closed Mind are negligible.

Even when I decide to venture on a short holiday, I forget for a second that pointless prejudice and a rampant desire for categorisation continues ... and yet again I'm embroiled in the labelling argument and to be frank I'm getting increasingly bored with trying to explain. Take music as a tree if you will ... there are multiple branches, these branches rub against each other, they entangle and interweave. Then there are twigs and shoots. There is also pollen that exchanges and moves between them. (Yes I know that's rare between species ... this is an example not a horticultural lesson.) The point is this: each and all can co-exist, work together sometimes, share the same space and interact with each other.

That's exactly where we are with folk. It extends across, through and round many other genres. And all feed off and interact with each other, usually to the betterment of all. No I don't mean all music is folk music. I mean that folk, as much as rock, blues and jazz does not have nor need proscriptive boundaries. Sure, there are pure manifestations but equally there are hybrids of all and every type ...and each have something to bring to the continuance and development of the species.

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