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Six Original Musical Geniuses


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Listen to Bono speak about Elvis, and Chuck Berry. Keith Richards happily gives the credit due Berry. The Beatles and Stones both give credit to Buddy Holly, Elvis, Berry and Little Richard. These were the innovators that allowed all the genius to follow.

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Cahah, I'm trully glad to see your writen articulation is now well formed. I originally seen it as stretched to make some sort of point. I'd like to know what that point was? You keep on going Girlfriend, if I can honestly say that? What town in Missouri did you say you were from? You see that is my home state, and I'm with you hun!

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I like your list, and agree with a couple. Others I admit I do not know unless you play them for me, but why would you exclude Soundgarden and put that hack band Nirvana in there? Trully they only had a couple of hits, and Soundgarden was honestly in the Seattle scene before Nirvana. What is all the hype about Nirvana? Is it a cultish sort of rememberance of Kurt's tragic suicide, because I admire the man's skills, but think he was a chicken [bleep] for running out like he did. Suicide is a chicken crap way of showing how selfish you can be to leave your loved ones behind without thought or careing toward their well being, is'nt it? I'm sorry, I liked their music, but I got no respect for the man!

Understand I like Nirvana, but I'm growing tired of the whole thing, as Nirvana being rated in the top ten of music history is not right. They had a couple of good songs, and they totally took away the lime light from more deserving bands like Soundgarden, Alice in Chains, and others.

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Sting and U2 are also wonder lyricists. If you can get past the political overtones of U2's lyrics (and political actions and reactions), the music is incredible. The sound is different than that of other bands. Sting has had more success as a solo artist than when he was with The Police. Funny how you always know it is Bono or Sting the minute they open their mouths. The voices are very distinctive. Why Sting ever let anyone sample his music is beyond me!

I was trying to figure out which part of your post to quote and figured why not quote all of it. Great post Catherine. When mentioning great lyrics you can't leave out Neil Peart. Neil Peart really needs no credit unless someone doesn't know who he is; drummer for Rush, wrote virtually all their lyrics. He talked about philosophy, racism, hatred, mythology, politics, and personal freedoms. The word genius doesn't do him justice. He's also, in my opinion, the best drummer ever. Anyone else going to see them this summer? I am, 6/23 Dallas, TX. :rockon:

Which brings me to the Sting comment about how he has had more success solo than with the Police. I wish the Police had stayed together for many reasons but the main one being that Sting would have been colaborating with Stewart Copeland who, in my opinion, is the second best drummer ever. The Police always had horns at their live shows so the jazz direction Sting has gone in could still have been followed. Sting along with Bono (mentioned in your post) has one of the great voices of our time.

The political and even relegious overtones of U2's music have never bothered me one way or the other. I've always just admired the music. U2's remake of "Night and Day" is like a showcase for all the bands' talents. After the intro when Bono starts to sing I still get chills even though I've heard the song several hundred times, just amazing. It's not on any of their CDs, its from a tribute album for Cole Porter, one of those Red Hot and Blue compilations to benefit aids research. So if you buy the CD you will be helping out a good cause as well. I still remember the first time I heard "I will follow". It was on a radio station with a format of 'rock of the 80's' kind of a new wave or techno format but they played the Police, U2, Talk Talk, and anything not disco or hard rock. You could describe the station as alternative although no one said that in 1980. 'Alternative' in this case meaning an alternative to both hard rock and disco. I didn't know "I will follow" was their first song off their first album. I remember thinking, "Wow, never heard anything like this before. I hope other people like this song, then the group will come out with more music." ::

I wanted to mention a couple of others that might go unnoticed. It's actually just one group, Genesis, and I'm including Peter Gabriel, who definitely deserves the title of genius. They weren't truly appreciated until more than ten years after Gabriel left the band, when both he and Genesis had the #1 and #2 songs and albums at the same time; Gabriel with "Sledgehammer" from So and Genesis with "Invisible Touch" from the CD with the same name. Mike Rutherford with his group Mike and the Mechanics wrote the saddest song I have ever heard, "The Living Years". Lots of talent came from the original Genesis is what I'm trying to say.

Finally, Prince or that symbol or whatever he calls himself now. What I admire most about him is his willingness to experiment when it doesn't make financial sense to do so. He could have come out with ten CDs just like Purple Rain but he didn't. I love it when musicians try different things. One of my problems with the Stones is that they never did anything different. Their music never evolved. Sometimes when groups do evolve they lose fans. Purple Rain, in my opinion, was his best effort, and I would put it up there with LZ4, Sgt. Peppers, Moving Pictures and Dark Side of the Moon in terms of importance. Anyone keeping that type of company has to have some amount of genius.

I had some more thoughts but my boss just came in and caught me posting this, watching an ER rerun, (instead of CNBC) and listening to Tricky by Run DMC while halfway dancing still sitting at my desk. Doesn't anyone knock anymore. Oh well, at least the Dow is up. "Tell me why I don't like mondays?"

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I had some more thoughts but my boss just came in and caught me posting this, watching an ER rerun, (instead of CNBC) and listening to Tricky by Run DMC while halfway dancing still sitting at my desk. Doesn't anyone knock anymore. Oh well, at least the Dow is up. "Tell me why I don't like mondays?"

Now I'm chair dancing at work...thanks, Cindy!

It's tricky to rock a rhyme

To rock a rhyme that's right on time

It's tricky

Tricky tricky tricky tricky!

:bow:

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  • 3 months later...

I was once told that there is 6 rock bands that are truly original. In todays music industry it is quite easy to point out who copied who and so on, and who is in it to rip whoever else's fans off... but I just want an opinion on if these 6 bands can be truly traced back to an earlier style. I am looking for an opinion, so anything goes.

Tool

Nirvana

Alice In Chains

Deftones

Nine Inch Nails

Radiohead

Have a great day!! :)

Blasphemy! With the exception of Radiohead and AIC, I couldn't care less for the music that these "truly original" bands made. I know for sure Nirvana copied the intro guitar riff off of Killing Joke for "Come As You Are" and Carl already mentioned Mudhoney, so we can scratch that out. NIN created nothing new when it came in the scene back in 1989; other bands in the genre were making the same sort of music of much better quality before Trent(KMFDM and Ministry, at least). The Deftones are a joke; more than half of the drek they've done is forgettable and if it's truly original, then that says something about "truly original" not being good. Tool's okay, but Maynard's screeching can really get on people's nerves - an occassional murmur and scream is good, but do it the whole way and you lost me. Just 'cause Circus magazine says it is, doesn't quite make it so :jester:

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I can't quite believe this thread - maybe people should look up the words 'original' and genius in a dictionary because a lot of the names mentioned in this thread so far fall way short of both of those definitions. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying they are bad, I'm not saying they don't approach their music from unusual angles etc. but please, if we are talking about genius then we are talking about the sort of gifts that come along maybe half a dozen times in each generation, across all disciplines of human activity, not dozen upon dozen in the realm of pop music.

If you really look at the history or rock and pop (say from 1920 up to today) I think you would be hard pressed to find more than ten people who really, genuinely live up to the title of genius, and maybe fifty to a hundred who were truly original.

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To define Original, you would have to look all the way back to the real source, from where it all began. Many of the artists of the past 50 years have done a lot to characterize a certain sound, but it all goes back to a certain point. I give the most credit to the troupers of the pre-1955 era for revolutionizing a significant method of music that still carries on today. But for the absolute genuine list, I would go back about 300 years or so, the key performers of Chamber Music & Classic Piano created some of the most timeless pieces, such as Moonlight Sonata & Fantasia (Piano in C Minor). My list would include?

Ludwig Van Beethoven

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Johannes Brahms

Fryderyk Chopin

Johann Sebastian Bach

Antonio Vivaldi

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If original can mean 'not derived from anything else' than I'm not sure its possible to list one let alone six artists who were not influenced by anyone directly or indirectly. So I'll say that original can mean 'fresh and unusual' something a little different than what everyone else was doing or had done.

Also since you could go back thousands of years tracing the evolution of music, I'll limit my list to 20th, 21st century rock (a broad term for styles ranging from folk to heavy metal etc) music.

A genius is also not that easy to define so I'll say 'a person of extraordinary intellectual and creative ability' but that definition goes for entire bands as well.

That said my choices, IMO, for 'original geniuses of pop music' would be:

- Chuck Berry (practically the originator of the rock n' roll format and one of its greatest songwriters and guitarists)

- The Beatles (natch, and yes that includes all four as a group: their music, their image, their lyrics, their attitude etc.)

- Pink Floyd (early work with Syd Barrett and latter with Roger Waters and David Gilmore)

- Bob Dylan (as a songwriter, singer and musician helping to initiate many genres of music)

- Phil Spector (as a songwriter and producer opening the door to unconventional production techniques and influencing such people as Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys).

- For the sixth I?d say the Velvet Underground, Led Zeppelin, the Doors or Neil Young.

These are of course only some of the main figures but countless others, popular or not, have shaped and defined music as we know it and it would be quite impossible to determine everyone who deserves credit.

Furthermore there are many artists who were very influential (setting trends or popularizing a form of music, like Nirvana) but who were not 'original' per se or who in fact re-introduced an older style or styles though in a unique way like the Band.

Also it would be incorrect to assume the artists listed above were not influenced by others or that they were the first to do what they did (although sometimes they were) or that just because their well-known and popular they are the 'best' or most 'original'. No, but the depth and magnitude of their work and tangible influence cannot be denied and since this is subjective anyway I thought I would offer my opinion.

Peace out and rock on! :)

~ Annabelle

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these last two posts prpbably have somethig more in line with what I was thinking of - my own nominations woudl be something like:

Robert Johnson

Frank Sinatra

Miles Davis

Elvis Presley (though I'd admit Chuck Berry may be the call here rathe rthan Elvis)

Bob Dylan

James Brown

The Beatles

Jimi Hendrix

Kraftwerk

With those or similar (and realistically we can only be talking about a fairly small number of other possible candidates)you are talking genuine, era-defining artists who really pushed back the boundaries - anybody else is just hanging off the coat-tails - no matter how great they were/are.

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To define Original, you would have to look all the way back to the real source, from where it all began. Many of the artists of the past 50 years have done a lot to characterize a certain sound, but it all goes back to a certain point. I give the most credit to the troupers of the pre-1955 era for revolutionizing a significant method of music that still carries on today. But for the absolute genuine list, I would go back about 300 years or so, the key performers of Chamber Music & Classic Piano created some of the most timeless pieces, such as Moonlight Sonata & Fantasia (Piano in C Minor). My list would include?

Ludwig Van Beethoven

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Johannes Brahms

Fryderyk Chopin

Johann Sebastian Bach

Antonio Vivaldi

Don't forget Wagner and the whole Operatic crew. There was a dude who came up with the idea of music for drama and brought on the whole melodram thing back from the Greek times. I think this was back in the 1600s or 1700s. This whole genre snowballed into film scoring and Wagner was pretty much the maestro whom everyone in the scene looked up to for the better part of the 20th century.

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Okay, To define Original we have to first Come up with genres. Because Rock n' Roll is so broad I will include a few.

*Chuck Berry-Rock n'' Roll In general

*Ramones-First punk rock. Ever.

*Robert Johnson-Blues guitar

*Black Sabbath-Metal

*Neil Young-Grunge. With Crazy Horse.

*Nirvana-New Rock. They were good, but they could do it. They alone basically. The new bands were all influenced by them. And they all suck.

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wow. i enjoyed reading all the comments but can only agree with a few. The stick banging theory is the original. All others mentioned that had influenced others (influenced is the key word)are just stepping stones. There were those "few" that dominated a sound or genre but it all goes back to a time before music was recorded in written form. Music was passed down or taught to the next generation. When i say generation; I'm talking loin clothes fig leaves "way back". Sure Chuck Berry was great, but he did not create blues.(If M.J. Fox didn't go Back To The Future hehehe) Sure the Kinks were awesome, but someone influenced them. This game could be played with any band or composer. Just take music for what it is. A good thing.

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If you talk also about classics or Sinatra, I could mention a belgian genius, Jacques Brel, and a French one, Serge Gainsbourg. In fact, Terry Jacks sings a couple of Brel songs ("Seasons in the sun" and "If you go away", as well as David Bowie with "Amsterdam") But there you should speak french to get the whole art of it. And I admit this isn´t very much "rock", it´s rather popular music.

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