Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?
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Old 02-09-2017, 03:27 PM   #1
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Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

I should start off by saying that I was a HUGE fan of Jarre's earliest work, and he was a big influence early in my life. Along with Vangelis, Schulze, Eno, etc, he laid the groundwork we all now build on.

That said, is anyone else here as surprised as I am that his "Time Machine" collaboration got a Grammy nod? In this age of INCREDIBLE, undiscovered indie electronica talent--real masterpieces made in people's bedrooms, hiding out in every corner of the web--I am so, so disappointed that we haven't managed to move the needle more than this. If this is supposed to represent some ideal electronic music, I don't get it.

I don't like to take anything away from artists and the work they do--least of all an early innovator like him--but IMVHO Jarre's music from the last 20 years has steadily declined (a phenomenon not unique to him, mind you). I took a listen through the first few tracks of this album and found it no more or less exceptional than his other recent work.

Or is it just me?

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Old 02-09-2017, 03:59 PM   #2
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

Grammy's are a popularity contest, full stop. They say absolutely nothing about the quality of the music or the skill of the artist. It's a self-fulfilling circle jerk where the same people that are financially involved with nominated artists are the ones voting for said artists. There's not an ounce of integrity in the process and as it probably isn't going away any time soon, it should be wholly ignored.

I'd guess they put Jarre up because either someone paid a lot of money to get him advertising and boost his sales or someone thought his name would look good on a poster.
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Old 02-09-2017, 05:09 PM   #3
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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Grammy's are a popularity contest, full stop. They say absolutely nothing about the quality of the music or the skill of the artist. It's a self-fulfilling circle jerk where the same people that are financially involved with nominated artists are the ones voting for said artists. There's not an ounce of integrity in the process and as it probably isn't going away any time soon, it should be wholly ignored.

I'd guess they put Jarre up because either someone paid a lot of money to get him advertising and boost his sales or someone thought his name would look good on a poster.
I guess none of that should surprise me. I mean, I'm happy for Jarre, but I wish these awards meant something more than A-lister ego stroking.
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Old 02-09-2017, 09:27 PM   #4
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

I guess I was so busy bitching about things I don't like that I neglected to mention how much I like Jarre. I tend to think of things like this as more Lifetime Achievement Awards than for a specific work. Whether or not his work has gone downhill in recent years, there's not an electronic musician that doesn't owe a debt to JMJ. If anything this is too little too late, and a bit sad that he didn't get the recognition he deserved earlier in life.
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Old 02-09-2017, 10:23 PM   #5
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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I guess I was so busy bitching about things I don't like that I neglected to mention how much I like Jarre. I tend to think of things like this as more Lifetime Achievement Awards than for a specific work. Whether or not his work has gone downhill in recent years, there's not an electronic musician that doesn't owe a debt to JMJ. If anything this is too little too late, and a bit sad that he didn't get the recognition he deserved earlier in life.
Yes, "lifetime achievement" is probably closer to the truth. I don't begrudge the guy recognition (not that he's lacking any), I just think there's a TON of ground-breaking music out there that isn't getting its due. Reality is a tough teacher.
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Old 02-09-2017, 10:56 PM   #6
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

Yeah, I think that brings up all sorts of questions about modern music and art and society. Jarre was sort of like Jackson Pollock - it's easy to be unique and individual when you're the only crazy person slinging paint across the room. Would JMJ even be popular if he popped up today? I mean he was incredibly gifted and had a really interesting ear, but the landscape is full of people like that, and half of them are 16 year olds in a basement in Ames, Iowa, not trained and practiced people living in cultural centers of creativity (sorry people of Ames).

So maybe we're just numb to great art. The Grammys suggests to me that we are. Radio and whatever passes for music televsion suggests it as well. The boon and determent of the information age is that things don't have to trickle down from Paris and LA to Bumfuck, Oklahoma over two years time - Bumfuck knows about it at the exact same instant via youtube and soundcloud and blogs. But that same phenomenon fractures 'scenes' into little microcosms where I only listen to one specific style of House made by blind monks in the Philly sewers and the rest of you can fuck off. It's insane the lack of cohesion that comes from making everything interesting available to everyone all the time. Jarre didn't exist in that scene, and I have no idea how he'd be received by it. He might be just as dismissed and ignored as the rest of the great music coming out today.

/ranttypething
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Old 02-09-2017, 11:20 PM   #7
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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Jarre was sort of like Jackson Pollock - it's easy to be unique and individual when you're the only crazy person slinging paint across the room.
IMO he was more like Ravel; changing a few rules, trying out some new instrumentation, and making beautiful music. Though not perhaps as avant garde as, say, Klaus Schulze. Jarre's thing has always been fairly firmly in the pop world.

I think it's one of those examples of an artist being at the right place at the right time with the right ideas. I truly don't know if he would have made an impact, had he started in 2017. Neither, I think, would his contemporary, Vangelis.

The airwaves are saturated, and it's difficult to be heard over that din. I say this with particular reference to the harmonic/melodic/rhythmic content in this and his other albums which, to my ear, feel uninspired and rather worn.

Man...he was my idol for years, so it's difficult writing this. 'Equinoxe' remains one of my top 5 electronica albums of all time.
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Old 02-10-2017, 12:48 AM   #8
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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Or is it just me?
To me his earlier work still stands out as well.. Although oxygene 3 has some interesting material imo.
But I remember for example when Teo & Tea came out, it was a bit of a disappointment. Same for time machine.. many of the tracks sound a bit generic.. I think its also due to the choice of percussive elements, for example in automatic part 2, makes it sound very cheesy.
Zero Gravity is quite nice though.

Maybe it's just part of his artistry. He's in the position to be able to try different things. Some things work out, some don't. And in the end its a matter of personal taste as well
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Old 02-10-2017, 01:36 AM   #9
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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Maybe it's just part of his artistry. He's in the position to be able to try different things. Some things work out, some don't. And in the end its a matter of personal taste as well
You might be right--that my own tastes have changed/matured and it just doesn't do it for me anymore. (Same goes for Klaus Schulze, if I'm being honest; his early stuff ROCKED but it went downhill.)

When I take stock of where my tastes are today, I can point to artists who rarely disappoint--whose level of musicality is always high. BOC, Radiohead, Deru, Aphex Twin, Trent Reznor... They do a lot of experimenting and it seems to be more consistently successful, classy.

And, irony of ironies, I just saw that Vangelis' 'Rosetta' album is also nominated this year! Hey it's like 1979!
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Old 02-11-2017, 02:23 AM   #10
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

Good for him, I'm with Artificier on the Grammy's though. Totally made for the olde guarde. They did away with a ton of awards in 2011. It's just pop stars patting each other on the ass. Rap has 4 categories, metal has one, lumped in with rock. "American Roots" has the most award categories...blues, folk, traditional Americana. Electronic music has a couple of awards categories which is actually better than I expected.

But the Grammy's are pretty much R&B, pop and some form of blues/country/folk and the same people tend to win it again and again. I've been wishing they would make a REAL, stand-alone People's Choice Awards for music for a while.
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Old 02-11-2017, 02:45 AM   #11
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

And while we're on the subject of JMJ, let's not forget the very important fact of who he is and the very connected relationship he has with the music and entertainment industry..namely his father, which I'm sure helped him get noticed a hell of a lot back in the 70s.

That's not to imply the guy wouldn't have broken through under his own steam..I'm sure he would have, as there really wasn't anything all that much out there like what he was doing at the time.

I've always been a big fan of his work and count him as one of my major influences. I remember back in the 80s when I unexpected got a real treat. I was staying at the time in a house that was literally about 20 feet from the official boundary perimeter they set for the whole Destination Docklands concert. Everybody in the houses and tower blocks within that area has been shuttled out and put up in hotels for health and safety reasons, but we were lucky enough to be able to stay put..which meant we had a rind-side view of all the lighting and pyrotechnics, which listening to the live broadcast on BBC radio.

There was even one of those giant search lights down at the end of our road, hooked up to a big-ass portable generator, that was aimed over our house and hitting one of the tower blocks.

Needless to say copious amounts of booze and other "more exotic" substances were consumed / ingested / smoked that night..

Man, good times..good time.

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Old 02-11-2017, 03:25 AM   #12
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

Just thought I'd tag this on to follow my last post here. It's a short documentary on the making of the Destination Docklands concert..for anyone who hasn't seen it already, but might be interested. It was a huge event,. just like I'm sure his other international concerts where around the world at that time.

Man, he really knows how to put on a show.


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Old 02-11-2017, 02:21 PM   #13
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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Man, he really knows how to put on a show.
Nice--I hadn't seen this
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Old 02-13-2017, 06:25 PM   #14
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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undiscovered
There's your answer.

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Old 02-13-2017, 06:50 PM   #15
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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There's your answer.
heh, I meant undiscovered only because one gets the impression that the movers and shakers in A-list circles have probably never visited Bandcamp, much less know what it is. As @Artificer said, it's mostly a popularity contest. Of course, there's no "cool factor" to sell for no-name bedroom artists on obscure labels...

Nothing new here though; the same has been said of the Oscars. I remember a filmmaker's Tweet: "Most films never get seen." Ouch.

One bright spot in all this is that Tycho was nominated; surely a good portent?
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Old 02-13-2017, 07:39 PM   #16
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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One bright spot in all this is that Tycho was nominated; surely a good portent?
Or not.

I think the internet IS the new mainstream music industry..all that's left is for the mainstream companies to move and start a "land grab" online..meaning trawling the forums and sites like here and Bandcamp, for the artists with biggest following and then signing them up. It's the only logical way they are going to be able to remain relevant and continue to do business in any meaningful way..they HAVE TO embrace the "Underground" and become part of this brave new world..in effect, turning the Underground into some sort of new mainstream, while pretending it's still some kinda cool underground scene.

Hence the likes of Tycho was nominated..plus the signing of the likes of Grimes in the past. I think we're actually witnessing the beginning of the "blurring of lines" between mainstream and the net, as they move in and grab a piece of the cyber pie for themselves.

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Old 02-13-2017, 08:10 PM   #17
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

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Hence the likes of Tycho was nominated..plus the signing of the likes of Grimes in the past. I think we're actually witnessing the beginning of the "blurring of lines" between mainstream and the net, as they move in and grab a piece of the cyber pie for themselves.
You could be right, but we could trust the artists to keep producing fresh, innovative music and not succumbing to lowest-common-denominator schlock. One example that comes to mind is Die Antwoord (I'm sure there are others); despite forays into other media (and celeb spats), their music remains forward-thinking and inventive.

***UPDATE: Yeah, maybe not so much; I just watched their newest vid and it's rather flat.

But maybe this is all in vain: money does often tend to corrupt one way or another...

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Old 02-13-2017, 08:32 PM   #18
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

no no, you all are wrong. Grammy's is not a popularity contest. it's about quality. Of all the music produced in 2016, Adele's album was the best for sure.

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Old 02-13-2017, 08:43 PM   #19
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Re: Jarre's "Time Machine" nominated for a Grammy..?

haha

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