Over the weekend, I attended a raucus concert. It was wild. I'm still recovering. Yes, there's no more exhilerating experience than attending "An Evening with John Williams and the LA Philharmonic" at the Hollywood Bowl.*
It's great, because it was in a large enough venue that I could constantly draw comparisons to normal concerts. It was like a normal concert's ridiculously nerdy twin. For example, instead of lighters, people actually held up lightsabers when they played the music from Star Wars. Only in LA do you have a packed 16,000 person stadium filled with film-music buffs. And these people knew their John Williams-- the orchestra would play the first note and people would scream with delight, knowing immediately which "smash hit" they were hearing.
Poke fun as I might, I'm blatantly one of these nerds. I completely idolize a dozen or so film composers, with J-Wills heading the list. I secretly think film music is the best music that exists, and could not possibly have been happier than in the Hollywood Bowl on that night.
See the problem in our time is that, as great as songs are, there is almost no love for music without words and a singer. When classical music dominated, composers just wrote music, and people just listened to music. Today, music needs to be accompanied by lyrics to be marketable. If you look at your iTunes, 98% of the songs have words.
Now I'm not suggesting that lyrics aren't pleasant and all, but it just seems odd to me how little interest there is in just pure music. It's almost as if we've gotten so used to lyrics with music that music sans lyrics just seems boring to us. And of course, since there's no market for plain music, no one's writing it-- all the talented composers are writing songs with words.
All except film composers. Movies are the only major venue for composers to make a living writing simply music. In a sense, film music is our modern day "classical music." The major film composers of today are as musically brilliant as any songwriter in the world-- and their music is fucking fantastic-- but very few people ever listen to film scores outside of the movie theatre.
I don't know how I got here. The intended purpose of this post was to make fun of the people with the lightsabers.
*Some of you don't know who John Williams is. I don't like you.