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The Beatles, The Troggs, Radiohead, The Flaming Lips July 9, 2008

Posted by fetzthechemist in Careers.
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or Mantovanni?

The theme of this will be work that is always good, but innovative. A mark of the 4 musical groups in the title is that they had hits or a sustained career – no one-hit wonders…..with the Troggs having the fewer noticable songs, but a huge range within their three hits. Everyone has heard Wild Thing, but these guys also put out two other hits, With a Girl Like You and the quinessential late 60s song Love is All Around. None sound like the others. Each is memorable.

With the others, any album from their early period sounds different than later things. The Beatles’ Abbey Road is not full of I Wanna Hold Your Hand songs, nor is Radiohead’s In Rainbows anything like Pablo Honey. The Flaming Lips are, to me, a mix of thoughtful songs done with fun built in. Profound lyrics sometimes – like “Do you realize that the sun going down is just an illusion caused by the world spinning round>”, but always you know they had fun doing it.

On the other end, you have Mannovanni. Every song sounds the same. Yes, he sold lots of records and had millions of fans, but he could do versions of Moon River or In-a-Gadda-da-Vida and both would sound similarly.

The message? I’d prefer staying fresh, on the cutting edge. Diversify and you do interesting work. It can be fun to learn and the results are useful. You can always do cookie-cutter research, but like Mantovanni, nothing of it is really Wow! and stands out.

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