Creating Original Copies in Music Essay

Creating Original Copies in Music Essay

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​The art of music can be described as a medium that can both physically and emotionally move people. All artists strive to be creative and stand out from the crowd; but when the majority of pop music is composed of four chords, where is the originality? G-E(minor)-C-D and A(minor)-C-D-F are the most common chord progressions and the only factors that change between the thousands of songs that use these progressions are the strumming pattern and the lyrics. However, the skills of the lyricist and composer who successfully produced these songs take a backseat to the singer. The audience robs them of their much due credit with their applause and idolizing. Although plenty of singers strive to be original, all artists “plagiarize” and reinvent the wheel; so, how are they able to achieve originality?
​Jonathan Lethem analyzes the way that various artists across all mediums rip off other artists in his essay “The Ecstasy of Influence: A Plagiarism”. In his essay, Lethem defines “plagiarism” to mean artists using other artist’s work through “mimicry, quotation, [or] allusion” (61). Rather than word for word copy and pasting of someone’s work, the word plagiarism will be used to describe the use of someone’s work as inspiration for other art in this essay. Lethem does not view this form of plagiarism as a heinous crime, rather, a “sine quo non of the creative act” and in fact, a badge of honor for the one getting “plagiarized” (61). In other words, it’s impossible to be creative without quoting and alluding to people and their works. Using an example of an Iranian filmmaker, Dariush Mehrjui, who used J.D. Salinger's work as a springboard for his work, Lethem asserts the filmmaker “had paid [Salinger] homage” by using it and in doing so, a...

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... been changing in movies and television to adjust for everything feeling “familiar”. Horror-spoof flicks and action, romance, comedy movies have been made because sticking to one genre would now bore people and would result in them walking out or changing the channel. The only question left is what will happen once people are bored with genre mixing. In other words, when the “strange” becomes “familiar” what will satisfy people’s appetite for entertainment? Maybe the emergence of the perfect genre will take over the market by stealing the best parts of all music and combining it to please everyone. The Internet Age is both a blessing and a curse when it comes to music. A person is able to create masterpieces by using other people’s music and blending various genres but one must not forget the Internet is what has caused people to crave creativity in the first place.

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