Do you listen to the b-sides? What about the deep cuts? In this episode, Ciyadh talks about why we should all slow down and take some time to listen to the b-sides and the deep cuts.
Topics also discussed:
1. Consistency vs. irregularity in art making
2. Listening deeply
Rihanna Responds To Fan Who Asks Where Her New Album Is And Says She’s “Lost” It
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\[00:00:00] **Ciyadh:** Hello, this is Musically Cogitating issue about music, the people who make it and about how all of that continues to impact the way that you. And I live our everyday lives. If this is your first time here, or if you've listened to every episode of this podcast so far welcome. I am your host Ciyadh Wells.
\[00:00:35] Thank you for joining me here on this podcast Wednesday, if you could go ahead and please use the link in the show notes to alleviate review of this podcast, wherever you listen. I would really, really appreciate it. That would be amazing. Also check the show notes for any links or things that I mentioned.
\[00:00:59] In this particular episode, I have a few memes linked, which I think are really, really funny. So be sure to go check those out. And of course, a link to the website where you can see the transcript for this episode will also be there. Today's topic is greatly inspired by last week's episode, where I talked about my favorite thing about Beyoncé.
\[00:01:24] And of course, aside from her incredible music my favorite thing about Beyoncé is that I know nothing about her and about her personal life. And so essentially last week's episode was a, a larger discussion about artists and people who like you and me, our listeners, our consumers, and our relationship to artists in the way that we assume that they will perform and live their lives on social media.
\[00:01:55] And of course, I don't think that social media is a bad thing. I think it is \[00:02:00] a wonderful thing. And if we use it in a really healthy way, it can be a really positive thing for our society, for artists at large. But of course, I think we should always be considering we should always be cogitating about how much we expect from artists, especially when it comes to what we expect, that they will give us from social media.
\[00:02:23] I wanted to kind of carry that conversation further along and today I wanted to talk about listening to the b sides. So I will connect this here in a minute. Just, just stick with me. And what I mean by this is that instead of only listening to the greatest hits of that particular artists, or only listening to the singles that.
\[00:02:50] Release or only listening to a particular group or a particular genre. I think that we should consider listening \[00:03:00] to things in a much deeper way. And maybe I think we should consider listening to the besides. So let's start with the, besides what is a beside. According to Wikipedia the B side or flip side is a secondary recording that typically receives less attention.
\[00:03:25] Although some, besides have been as successful as, or more so than the a sides. So that was the Wikipedia, you know, right up on a B side. And so if you are familiar with a vinyl record, The B side is usually the second side of the album. So they're always labeled a B if there are more vinyl albums there, then they will, you know, be C, D E F and so on.
\[00:03:57] So in the age of \[00:04:00] streaming and CDs and I guess tapes as well, I would say that b sides songs that aren't typically released as singles or to promote their particular album. So they are usually lesser known songs and I could be wrong about this, but I think that those songs that end up being the besides or the ones that aren't released on and, uh, you know, publicly are really more interesting than what the artists release.
\[00:04:34] And I think although people might see them as filler on the album or padding. I think that they are most, certainly not every record is on an album for a reason. So those songs, they mean a lot to the artists, because they are there to give depth and meaning to you, the art and to the message and the story that they are trying \[00:05:00] to, to share.
\[00:05:00] It's really there to showcase the talent and the depth, but those songs don't get a lot of recognition because there they are the besides, so we should listen to the besides and the deep cuts not in the same way that we've come to expect artists to share everything about their private lives with us to always be perfect.
\[00:05:24] You always be giving us something in public and never really skipping a beat. I think that has started to bleed over into our expectations of them as musicians, as artists, as people who, as people who are going to give us something, we've come to expect that they will always be giving us something new.
\[00:05:45] And I want us to think about going deeper on what an artist has already released and connecting with that music rather than expecting, or thinking that someone will always be turning out new, new waysides. If you will. \[00:06:00] I think part of this obsession with new comes largely from the idea that art has become a big part of this large ominous category of things called content.
\[00:06:15] This podcast is a podcast. Yes, but it is also content. Right? My blogs, my newsletters, my tweets, you do videos, everything. All of it is content and yes, I agree. Yeah. Like art is content, but art is also art and it's a category all on its own. And content creators are successful in large part because content is constant, right.
\[00:06:46] It is a steady stream. Of the thing that the person is making, it comes out all the time. You know, recently I heard someone say in a YouTube video that the algorithm thrives on \[00:07:00] consistency and, you know, the algorithm is manmade. It's made by developers and programmers, but it is largely made and influenced by human behavior.
\[00:07:13] So if we, the people right, being the people want more content, the algorithm is going to do what has got to do to give us more content, right. It is a cycle and it is this constant stream of newness that connects us all to the content. It's what keeps us coming back. Right. It's what keeps you listening to this very podcast?
\[00:07:37] Every Wednesday or every other Wednesday, right? It is because you know, it's going to be there you come back. Of course I'm like this too. I love it. When my favorite artists put out something new. I love it. When I get a new podcast in my podcast player. Like I love it when I get to see a new video on YouTube, like best stuff.
\[00:07:55] It's exciting. And it keeps me coming back to the platform. \[00:08:00] But I think this constant stream of content has maybe negatively impacted and affected how we come to expect new art to be created in this world. Right. There's something about content that implies. Regularity and there's this commitment to consistency, but I don't know that that's going to always work out for art.
\[00:08:27] I think that art implies a little bit, maybe not a lot, but a little bit of irregularity art gives us meaning to life that we can always, always, always understand in, you know, 60 seconds, if it's, you know what they're calling short form content. There is depth. There's depth there. And yeah, it takes time to make content.
\[00:08:53] I'm not saying that content, it doesn't matter or that it's not fast or anything, or that it's not slow or anything like that. \[00:09:00] But content is really fast. And I don't think that art is necessarily supposed to be consumed in this really, really fast way. And I think part of it, yeah. We have access to so much more that we want to be able to get through more of it.
\[00:09:13] So we consume it at a faster rate, but I don't, I don't know that it's supposed to, to be fast in its creation or its consumption. Right. It's supposed to take time. We're supposed to think about what we are listening to when. Somebody says whatever they say in their song where it right. We're supposed to understand it and really digest it.
\[00:09:38] And it's not supposed to be rushed. And yet, like I said, all we do is kind of rush people. We rush artists and it doesn't do anyone any good. It isn't you the artist and you get it and do us as listening to you. Good. And so the biggest example of this that I see is Robyn Rihanna Fenty Yes, \[00:10:00] her last album came out in 2016 and I promise you at least once a day on Twitter, somebody is tweeting at Rihanna and asking Rihanna, where is the album?
\[00:10:14] And there are some fantastic memes that I've linked. In the show notes that demonstrate this, but people want more music from her. And that's natural because we love Rihanna. Right? Like she is good. Like she's giving us all of she's given us all of this wonderful music. And so we, we want more of it and yeah, it's been a minute, you know, artists don't always take a lot of time in between.
\[00:10:39] Albums anymore. There are some that do right. There are the Beyoncé’s and Adeles. And at this point, the Rihanna is, but not everyone's like that. Some people are giving us albums and collabs every other month, every other month, it seems, but at least like every year or every other year. And so we, we, we want it because we're not used to being without it, but I \[00:11:00] want us all to consider.
\[00:11:02] What if, instead of asking Rihanna, right. Or anyone else for that matter for another album, what if we celebrated and listened to more of the wonderful music that they have already given us? Right. What if we, what if you, what if I listened to get ready for it? The, besides what if we took some time to get to know all of those songs that she's released, right.
\[00:11:27] Like I own Rhonda album. Of course I do. I've been to see her in concert. Of course I have great show. Great, great, great job by the way. And there are songs on Rihanna albums that I have never heard. Right? I know all her singles. I know the songs on the albums that I listened to, but she has so many songs that I don't know.
\[00:11:48] And what about if, instead of rushing her to give me and the rest of the Navy, that's what she calls her group of people. You can just call me a \[00:12:00] Rihanna fan. That works too. What if, instead of asking for more, we just appreciate it. What she has already given us. What if I just listened and learned and try to really internalize and understand all of the music and all of the work that she has already done.
\[00:12:17] Like I should really do that. We should all really, really do that instead of expecting that they will give us something new because some of these people they've, they've given us 20 years of music already, you know, but that's a lot, why don't we listen to. Because I'm sure that yeah, there are some people that we, we are like super fans of.
\[00:12:40] And so yes, we've consumed all of their, their music. We've listened to it. We've internalized, it we've memorized. The lyrics are and all that, but there are people that we enjoy maybe casually, you know, maybe not so casually that we could still like take some time and spin it and spend with their music.
\[00:12:57] So it's like, we need to get to \[00:13:00] the, besides we need to get to the. Cuts, you know what I'm saying? You know, so I think ultimately what I'm saying here, besides listen to the deep cuts, listen to the besides, right? Is that we need to learn to live with what artists have given us so far. We need to learn to love the art that they have put out and be a little bit less concerned about what something new is coming out.
\[00:13:25] Right. Because art will be there when it's ready to be. When it's, when it's ready to be heard, when it's ready to be listened to, but don't worry about consistency. Don't worry about the time bound constraints that we put on art. Like, let all of that be your guiding light as you, as you listen, as you're on your listening journey.
\[00:13:45] So in the meantime, listen to the, besides listen to the other stuff and of course have a little bit of fun. Since this is a show about music. I wanted to recommend something for you to listen to you. \[00:14:00] And this week's recommendation is falling by Melissa Aldana. She is a new saxophonist to me. And so, you know, yeah.
\[00:14:09] This song is coming out on an album soon and yeah, I'm going to get that album, but I'm also. Going to listen to the besides, right. I'm going to listen to the deep cuts. I'm going to listen to the, the phone, the cell phone videos from when she was performing in a club from 2008. And that's how I'm going to learn and, and, and, and consume her music and become a real, a real, super fan.
\[00:14:32] So. That's what I'm going to do. Listen to it. It'll be linked. Like it always is. Don't forget to follow the podcast on Instagram and Twitter. I've been tweeting a lot, so that's been great. And if this is the website, cause there's there's blogs, I've been writing a lot because of course I enjoy doing that.
\[00:14:49] So that's there sign up for the newsletter and all of that stuff. As I mentioned at the top of the show, I would really appreciate it. If you could leave a review on apple \[00:15:00] podcasts, pod, chaser, or Spotify, and you can use the links to show support in any way that works for you. So that's all I have for today.
\[00:15:10] I'll be back very, very soon with the next episode of the Musically Cogitating podcast until then.