Showing posts with label Microsoft Songsmith. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Microsoft Songsmith. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

I’m Singing With My Laptop

Slightly over a week ago, in my February 1st entry, I observed that it is possible now to make a record simply by recombining fragments of sounds sampled by other records—you don’t even need to know how to play an instrument. In the context of that argument, I cited Public Enemy’s Hank Shocklee, who said almost twenty years ago:

We don’t like musicians. We don’t respect musicians…. In dealing with rap, you have to be innocent and ignorant of music. Trained musicians are not ignorant of music, and they cannot be innocent to it. They understand it, and that’s what keeps them from dealing with things out of the ordinary…. [Public Enemy is] a musician’s nightmare. (Keyboard, September 1990, pp. 82-83).

Perhaps instead of citing Hank Shocklee, however, I should have simply included the following commercial advertisement for Microsoft’s Songsmith as proof enough of my claim. Clicking on the link also brings up on the sidebar examples of what is fast becoming a new cottage industry, twisted versions of pop songs (re)made with Microsoft’s Songsmith. Among the most byzantine of these new songs are versions of the Police’s “Roxanne” and Billy Idol’s “White Wedding.” Anyone yet tried "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida"? In the words of Hank Shocklee, Songsmith is a musician’s nightmare, and even more evidence that rock music has received a silicon termination notice.