Nothing Like the Real Thing?

Friday June 04th, 2010 / 11:04 Written by

violin-guitar-and-saxophone1Last week I was asked what I’d think if I went to a concert and all of the musicians were on stage playing music with a software program instead of real instruments. I must admit that the question stumped me. On the one hand, I’m a big fan of technology, as it has brought us countless advances in music. On the other hand, there’s something about seeing a musician play their instrument live that never grows old with me.

I’ve been going back and forth with this topic so can we discuss it?

Some will say that nothing sounds as good as the real thing. But, today’s software is getting pretty close, as there are instrument samples out there that make it hard to hear the difference. Is that a good thing or bad thing?

Others may believe that because music is continuously evolving, technology is merely keeping pace with instrument samples.

While I like the spice that technology is adding to music today, I think I’d feel a bit shortchanged if I went to a show and no one played a real instrument on stage. But, what do you think? Can both types of sound coexist and be equally valued?


About the author

I'm the editor of Finding the B-Side.

View all articles by Mimi

2 Comments on “Nothing Like the Real Thing?

  • I think the two can definitely co-exist, but I believe there is nothing like the experience of hearing live music. Certainly there is great value in technology, as it allows us to hear music in at times when live music isn’t readily available. It also provides unlimited resources for creativity. But, the true value of live music comes from the feeling one has when watching a true artist at work, which is something I’m sure all true music lovers can appreciate.

  • The two can definitely co-exist. However, you would definitely lose a vibe or two if the drummer or guitarist were banging keys instead of the instrument of their craft.

    The notion of “instrument” seems to be changing as technology evolves. Just look at some of the software controllers now. While they don’t produce sounds on their own, people are performing rather innovative tricks to control sounds in order to make music.

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