Is House Music to stay underground? The fact that its scene is living hard times is nothing of a fantasy. Even tough history tends to show this has always been more or less the case. Except during that 1988-93 period when the major companies invested in it…
Since then, much has been said as to why this genre never reached the top. In others words, the level of notoriety that R&B and Hip-Hop have gained in the meantime. And this despite its numerous talents.
Could this be that House Music has to face the situation of the Accursed Poets in France in the XV° Century? Elements of response thereafter from various observations and contributions from people we’ve interviewed along with time…
Is House Music to stay underground? Press coverage! What press coverage?
I come to remember US correspondants of mine suggesting me to come up with an English version of the (French) mag I was working for. A situation which, to me, was quite illustrative of the cruel lack of exposure that the House Music scene was facing. And this despite the existence of a prolific press in UK.
But U know what? This was even no surprise to me. This while havin’ a look at the editorial choices of a big majority of British magazines back then. As many publications which most likely found (extra) finances by supporting club promoters obviously quite compliant with the consumption of narcotics. Therefore resulting in countless cover stories establishing the use of drug as a way of life! And this in addition to the tabloid culture which most of them had progressively adopted. Leaving the sole Nicky Trax having a really interesting column about House Music on Blues & Soul at the time!!!
Is House Music to stay underground? And what House Music are we talkin’ about?
All in all, some of you may say that House DJ’s have nothing to complain about. Something you could hear back then from Frankie Feliciano. The latter saying how happy he was to get money to travel worldwide for doing what he loves. But what did his earnings represent in comparison with the £60,000 some UK big names would get to spin for 2 hours in London during 2003 New Year’s Eve??? And how to explain the differences of rates US DJ’s use to get in their country and what they’re offered abroad? With, at times a difference of 1 on 20?!?
On the other hand, seeing what some DJ’s/producers have done to become mainstream acts makes me tend to think that the best things come from the underground. A scene where people tend to give their very best from their own sufferings. Even though what’s considered as good remains the prerogative of each of us, says Dimitri from Paris… “It’s mainly up to you to be accepted whatever you may do. And there’s nothing to say about this. Because it’s the public who’s got the final word at the end of the day.”
Meanwhile, Ultra Naté delivers another interesting observation. The Baltimore songstress pointing out the fact that things usually go in circles… “(Good) House Music was around some 25 years ago and resurfaces regularly.” Something we can easily link to Norman Jay‘s words… “The fact that you may be under or outside the spotlights varies from a period to another. This along with the successive arrivals of new generations that have to get to know you.”
One thing for sure though is that there will always be good music around. Be it underground or not. The big problem residing in finding the right material. In other words, proper songwriting that would allow the listeners to indentify themselves to a song. But also the use of the right tools. Beginning with some efficient way of communication for its actors to reach a wider crowd.
Is this ever possible, or is House Music to stay underground? The response is no one else’s but each of us’s. But rest assured we’ll always do our best to give exposure to what we believe to be quality music…
Editorials – Is House Music to stay underground?
Previously in the series…
Could Music have become a function?