Page 1 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay

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This illustration taken from the album music for a jilted generation by The Prodigy defines many core values associated with the acid house and rave era spanning from the late 80¶s through to early 2000¶s. Key points being symbolised in this image are the escape by everyday working folk from their tenuous nine to five day jobs working in factories to this underground movement of followers who just wanted to have an escape from normal life and to stick it to the authorities. The imagery of the single person gesturing to the authorities that the party cannot be stopped is symbolic of everything associated by the culture and the almost secret society of those that followed it. Hosting parties in non-conventional spaces like abandoned warehouses, aircraft hangers and open fields. A rave organiser describes it as (Paskin, 1993) The era where acid house was at its prime was during the end of the Thatcher government where the country was in recession so attending parties like this were the public¶s way of release from such government control. There was no control over the gatherings and no rules to adhere to. Due to this lack of control and policing drugs were a large factor in rave culture. ³Ecstacy (sometimes pharmaceutical MDMA, often a cocktail of amphetamines and LSD) was the prototypical drug of the late eighties/ nineties rave scene. Research shows that many clubbers and often polydrug users who tend to abstain from drugs other than marijuana outside clubs and raves (cf. Newcombe 1992).´ (Thornton, 1995) Towards the decline of acid house culture in 2003 came the introduction of the criminal justice act. Laws were passed regarding trespassing, repetitive beats being played in public areas and granting police the power to seize equipment they believe to be used for such parties. The main part that relates to raves is Section 63
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Taken from The Prodigy Music for a jilted generation album, inside cover.

Page 1 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay

how they are played. where the gathering extends over several days. sound produced by this hardware was by no means close to that of a real drum kit but has become autonomous with dance music production to this very day. p. Sound samples from other artists productions were often used in production and due to the limitations of current hardware were often very short as the technology had not been developed to the extent it is today allowing entire productions to be stored in their multi track format digitally. µThese are the rules of musical form [«] which include playing conventions ± what skills the musicians must have.¶ (Frith. S. the relationship of voice to instruments. melodic rules. throughout the period during which amplified music is played at night (with or without intermissions). At the time the TR-808 was originally unsuccessful as a device for production which led to it being very affordable on the 2nd hand market.) (1)This section applies to a gathering on land in the open air of [F120] or more persons (whether or not trespassers) at which amplified music is played during the night (with or without intermissions) and is such as. and (b)³music´ includes sounds wholly or predominantly characterised by the emission of a succession of repetitive beats. Rave culture was very different from conventional performance by musicians where live instruments were used and formal and technical rules differed somewhat. 1998. 1994) Although with the introduction of these laws the acid house rave culture almost sunk into obscurity overnight many elements of it remain in dance music to this day and had this not occurred many genres that are present today for example drum and bass. 91) The means of production for such music often used hardware like the Roland TR-8082. With the advent of home production more often 2 The Roland TR-808 images and explanation of its workings http://www. what instruments are used. dubstep and more niche genres like breakcore would not have gestated.Page 2 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay (Section 63 Powers to remove persons attending or preparing for a rave. By applying genre rules you can start to see a relation of acid house and current popular genres today. and for this purpose² (a)such a gathering continues during intermissions in the music and. by reason of its loudness and duration and the time at which it is played.vintagesynth.php Page 2 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay . is likely to cause serious distress to the inhabitants of the locality.com/roland/808. rhythmic rules. (Home Office. whether they are amplified or acoustic.

to questions of ownership. in particular are sometimes positioned as the masters of the scene. One such track by the group shut up and dance entitled raving I¶m raving 7was withdrawn by the record label following the threat of a lawsuit by the original artist Marc Cohn due to its similarities to his song walking in Memphis 8. The real performers were the DJ¶s or disc jockeys. 93) From using the sound samples little regard was given for sample clearance from other artists with the music taking parts of other artists work with little alteration to the sounds and simple drum patterns and synth noises layered on top of the track.old-computers. ³In knowing. those producing the tracks had very little chance on any gain unless a track championed by a DJ then leading to it being released on a major label within the scene for example XL recordings.asp?c=20 5 Smart-e s Sesames Treat promotional video http://www.com/museum/computer. Examples of such production are clear in music like Smart-e¶s Sesame¶s Treat 5and the track by Urban Hype.old-computers. Production house or FFrr.youtube. On many occasions producers would pay for production of a limited run of twelve inch vinyl records to be produced usually unlabelled or with basic information hand written on them which would then be passed onto independent record shops specialising in 3 4 The Amiga 500 from Commodore http://www. µThese refer to the means of production of a music genre. although they can be overshadowed by club organisers whose job it is to know who¶s who and gather the right crowd´ (Thornton.asp?c=65 The Atari ST http://www. Although the majority of the music was produced with little budget more often than not on home based studios the producers were not the musicians at the forefront of the scene contrary to other genres like pop or rock.com/watch?v=zBpy3JrI3oQ 8 Mark Cohn Walking in Memphis http://www.com/watch?v=1TLDQdQmk3g Page 3 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay . This could then potentially lead onto chart success but with it the risk of being classed as selling out to the mainstream.Page 3 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay than not computers such as the Amiga 500 3and the Atari ST 4which was favored due to it being the first home computer with MIDI ports as standard giving producers with little budget the ability to start producing dance music at home. DJs.com/watch?v=sXYa_qklKPc 7 Shut Up and Dance Raving I m Raving http://www.youtube. This small group of major artists were the tastemakers of the genre and their performances predominantly featuring other artists work were what the followers of the genre would crave. 1995) With this DJ led culture that surrounded the genre there was little financial gain from within unless you were a DJ or promoter.com/museum/computer.youtube.com/watch?v=sXYa_qklKPc 6 Urban Hype Trip to Trumpton Promotional Video http://www. owning and playing the music.youtube. Trip to Trumpton6. financial reward¶ (Ibid p. copyright.

youtube. (Ibid p. Often producers would send DAT tapes to mastering houses with dub plate cutting facilities along with a list of the DJs who were permitted to have a copy of that track. These were acetate based records which were used in the mastering process of mass produced records and would cost approximately fifty pounds each. Lyrics were more often not a key aspect of the music but what little were used often had meaning on many semiotic levels. Some would say these samples were direct references to the ecstasy usage and effect the drug has on somebody when consumed. This still happens today be it in a more digital environment using the internet. Music is experienced even to the point where the tracks told the listener to µfeel the rush¶ which referred to one of the feelings an ecstasy user experiences when under the influence of the drug. There were still live performances in acid house however these were overshadowed by the DJ side of performance and more often happened when a track which had been in the DJs possession for some time was picked up by a record label for a major release and for performance issues required a band to give the impression of the song being performed live.Page 4 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay such music. how music works as rhetoric. µThese are essentially rules of communication. 91) From the majority of tracks in acid house they were mostly instrumental however a common theme in the majority of the sampling that happened in tracks with samples of µeverybody free¶ µI got the power¶ and µlet the music take control¶.com/watch?v=IGg7eEf2YB0 The Prodigy performing at Shelly s nightclub 1991 http://www. One of the main struggles of obtaining this status as an A-list rave DJ was owning the music. This also occurred when such a release had heavy copyright issues with sample usage or clearance from the original artist. The prodigy were one of the first acts to take studio produced tracks and turn them into an actual live performance10 although the performance was still heavily led by samples they were triggered live by musicians. to become a member of this exclusive group you had to have access to dub plates.com/watch?v=7IMIlvJ9t14 Page 4 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay .Ride on time performing on top of the pops http://www. 9 10 Black Box .youtube. an example of this is the artist Black Box performing Ride on Time9 the entire tune was studio produced using samples for the vocal and piano track. Because of the money earned by these DJs to become a member of this group was often difficult as one extra person who owned a particular track would mean the track becoming less exclusive. such rules refer to the ways in which ³meaning´ is conveyed [«] they determine the significance of the lyrics¶. ten times more expensive than a normal twelve inch recordings but granting the DJ the status they could be the only person with that track.

how many lights. 1981) If you were to take the pop genre as an example the performers within when in the eyes of the public and media remain clean cut and portray the image they can do no wrong.Page 5 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay ³How you are seated says more about the music that will be performed than a poster does´ (Fabbri.html 13 Flyer advertising an event near Blackpool. Drugs were a large part of the rave culture. Separate ³chill out´ areas were provided where participants could relax. cold water and other amenities were provided.91 showing the extent of the main dancing area and lack of seating http://www.12 13 Behavioural aspects of performance differed somewhat from other genres and what would be viewed as unacceptable in other more commercial genres were socially acceptable within rave culture. This would not be a technical specification of the production but more a case of how loud. how much décor and what additional attractions to the main performance would be available. http://angeladam.youtube. seen as the performers of the genre would steer away from this image to avoid rejection from both peers and audience.08.com/video/OldRavesAndPartiesVideoIndex. ³How the performers ³sincerity´ is valued differently according to genres. they were illegal in the eyes of the law and socially Footage from a large rave in Norfolk 23.com/user/ravehistory#p/u/1/QNE67GvRG20 12 Sunrise Rave in Longwick Buckinghamshire 1989 showing extra attractions outside of the main performance area. The additional production of the rave was often an integral part of the performance with rave promoters often boasting about the loudness of the speakers and the specification of lighting and décor. 11 Page 5 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay . Rave artists and promoters on the other hand. 1981) conventionally raves were never a seated performance and very little seating was provided for the audience in the main area to encourage them being on their feet and dancing11.´ (Fabbri.

µworld beat¶ etc. µteenage pop¶. In an attempt to remain underground the public would often veer away from how the media reported on the genre µJournalists and photographers do not invent subcultures. µFans also express anti-commercial beliefs (or 14 CCTV footage from a rave in Doncaster where clear use and effect of ecstasy can be seen http://www.Page 6 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay accepted by those involved within the genre14. mark their core and reify their borders.com/watch?v=bM3xf87CbIQ 15 Dance 91 in Oxfordshire where an event organiser sarcastically denies knowledge of drug usage 4:02. µDividing the total audience for popular music into musical taste categories such as µhard rock¶. media routes. any knowledge to their use was denied. K. but shape them. nd http://angeladam. However taking drugs would make somebody socially accepted within the scene. 1992.93) Due to the often remote location of raves popularity for the genre was mainly among the 17-25 age bracket the lower end of this being the legal driving ages enabling the audience to travel to such locations. reflect what the music is meant to stand for as a social force..15 Regarding the background of those involved in rave culture it is stated ³These are rules concerning the ethnic or gender divisions of labor. When drugs were spoken about outside of cultures arena. Media and other cultural industries are integral in the processes by which we create groups through their representation¶ (Thornton. 1995.S. enables marketing staff to target consumers through specific publications. where they could don their smiley face t-shirt and escape to this secret society away from the mainstream. p. in general. 1996.com/video/OldRavesAndPartiesVideoIndex. and. p.html# 2 link Page 6 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay . its account of an ideal world as well as the real one´ (Frith. 160) This statement could also be argued that journalists also destroy subcultures. radio shows. retail stores and venues¶ (Negus. Other audience members would often come from lower to middle class backgrounds where the weekend rave was their escape from the nine to five factory or office job. While this may seem an easy task because of the attitude of those that followed the genre by corporations trying to harness how to market to these individuals it often led to the behaviour of fans to change once an organisation had decided how to market products to the genre. Because of this ever changing view from fans this made it very difficult to market directly to them. pp. for example. 67-8). µalternative¶. µdance¶. This was proven often when issues caused by journalistic intervention with the rave culture from small incidents through to trends being completely rewritten once the media had gained a grasp. the smiley face t-shirt once a popular garment with followers became unacceptable following an article in mainstream media linking it with drug use. S.youtube.

(Hills. 29).Page 7 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay µideologies¶. Page 7 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay . M. we might say. 2002 p. In conclusion rave culture can be defined by these rules however in following these rules it could be argued that it has led to its demise and the growth of its subgenres to their own individuality now. Although very little exists now due to government intervention and the criminal justice act acid house and rave culture has given birth to the popularity of modern electronic music today and these rules can also now be applied to those subgenres in their own right. since these beliefs are not entirely in alignment with the cultural situation in which fans find themselves).

A thoery of musical genres: two applications. Oxford paperbacks Oxford university press. Interviewer) Thornton. L. S. March 19). (2007). (1994). Paskin.uk: http://www. In D. In D. Home Office. 52-81).org. (1981). B. Oxford paperbacks Oxford university press. unknown unknown). Popular Music Perspectives (pp. Popular Music Perspectives (pp. (1995). Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994.gov. Interviewer) Thornton. Paskin.uk/Scene/press/magazines. Oxford: Polity Press.legislation. Retrieved 04 17. Popular music and sociaty. Göteborg & Exeter. L. F. Club Cultures.uk: http://www. from http://www. from www.gov. polity press. Routledge. Club Cultures. Club Cultures. Tagg. Frith. S. Göteborg & Exeter.fantazia.uk/ukpga/1994/33/section/63 Longhurst.Page 8 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay Works Cited Fabbri.).d. (n. (n. Retrieved 04 17. Retrieved 03 02. (Unknown. H. A thoery of musical genres: two applications. Oxford: Polity Press. (1993. Frith. March 19). 2011. S. Performing rites: Evaluating popular music. H. 52-81).org. 2011.uk: http://www. Performing rites: Evaluating popular music. Popular music and sociaty. Sexing the groove : popular music and gender.uk/ukpga/1994/33/section/63 Longhurst. (1993. Club Cultures. from http://www.htm Whiteley.legislation.fantazia. (2007). Raves relationship to the media. F. (1981).d. (1997).gov. (1995). (unknown. S. (1994). polity press.gov. Home Office. (Unknown. S. B. Tagg.legislation. Page 8 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay . Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994.). Bibliography Fabbri. 2011.legislation.

org.htm Whiteley. from www.fantazia. (unknown.fantazia. Sexing the groove : popular music and gender.Page 9 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay Raves relationship to the media. Routledge.uk/Scene/press/magazines. Page 9 Student ID 21006394 MC401 Music Cultures and Marketing Principles CW1 Essay . Retrieved 03 02. 2011. (1997). unknown unknown). S.org.uk: http://www.

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