Music

I have never pulled any punches when talking about what I think of music (see here and here and here and here if you're confused). It transcends culture and genre and ideology and language. It is the speech of angels. It moves us in the way that God does. Because of my thoughts on the topic, I have incredible frustration with our industry built around it. It is run by a love of money instead of a desire for expression. It is enjoyed by a culture obsessed with pedantics instead of one united by love. We argue about genre and judge based on sound. We discuss what is "good" and "bad" music as if everybody hears it the same way. It's a business now, and as such, it carries similar connotations. Artists who depend on it for their living have to create based on what their bosses say and based on what will sell.

The good news is that I am not the only one nervous about this - far from it, as a matter of fact. Organizations like Kickstarter are attempting to put the creative juices back in the hands of artists. Now, instead of looking at many thousands of dollars of production fees as proof of the necessity of signing to a label, they can make their fans their biggest fundraisers, accepting donations no matter how small with perks and benefits as they donate larger amounts of money. Not only are the listeners then buying the music, they are literally funding it as it's being made. Just like that, the control is away from corporal suits.

We are slowly getting back to the place where music is made for the joy of it. My thoughts? In a perfect world, music would be free. It's that simple. We wouldn't make music to get paid for it or to amass followers or to make a statement about how awesome we are for making music, but how awesome the music is for allowing us to make it. This, of course, doesn't cover the cost it takes to buy gear or pay for gas or to rent studio time or any of that, so of course it is just an ideological perfection... but I think that Kickstarter is on to something. What if we used the love of music to fund itself?

I love making music, and if I could justify quitting everything and just doing that for the rest of my life, I would do it happily. I'm not saying that I should or that I deserve it or that anybody would like it or that I'm half as good at making it as I pretend to be, all I know is that it is the easiest way I know to communicate with my Creator. That being said, I have been writing a massive amount of new material in a myriad of styles for a number of purposes here lately.

You can see sort of a running list of musical rough drafts here. Everything there is put out for the purpose of putting out music. It is all fair game being critiqued, ripped apart, criticized, enjoyed, hated, brushed over, ignored, whatever it is you feel like doing with it.

Also, a sort of new development, I have music available for download for absolutely free here. Of course, I'll accept donations, but all of that money will go straight back into music things for the sole purpose of putting out more and more music for free. It's a rather nice little cycle :) Feel absolutely no obligation to pay even a cent however, because my music is not about money. I just hope that through listening you can feel even a portion of my love for it.

 

Hamilton Barber

The subject of this page is an introverted writer/musician/lunatic from Chattanooga, TN who dabbles in lexical dexterity, unorthodox thoughts on prosperity, and being overwhelmingly undeserving of the privilege of waking up every day. He hopes that everybody who reads these words takes them to heart and leaps higher than he ever could. He reads, thinks, and speaks too much; he listens, works, and loves too little; and he says “I” entirely too often. The words on these pages are not his: they are the words that were given to him.