Electronic music in star trek

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by SpaceBrotha, Oct 10, 2009.

  1. SpaceBrotha

    SpaceBrotha Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    What is the deal with star trek and its love of pre-electronic music? All references to music in star trek that I am familiar with completely ignore electronic music. It is always Riker and his trombone, or Picard and his tin whistle (Ressikan flute) or some other pre-electronic instrument. Why is it that music and musical instruments do not evolve with the rest of society?

    I want to see some Romulan synthesizers, or some Klingon drum machines. Maybe even some Bajoran vocoders. Is anyone else with me? :bolian:
     
  2. jazzstick

    jazzstick Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    A great question!


    Why is it, that its only jazz and classical music? Is Rock and or Roll not good enough for Star Trek? No Led Zeppelin? No Heavy Metal? No African music? Just hi-falunent American music?
     
  3. mysticgeek

    mysticgeek Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Or how about Rock and Metal? I suppose it is because all the treksters are uptight and snotty jerks who think only classical and jazz is appropriate for the federation.

    Yo! I wish they had the Gangsta Rap! How 'bout some Trek Pimp'n and Slapp'n them ho's!!
     
  4. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Talking of electronic music, I think Kraftwerk should score the next Trek film. :)
     
  5. SpaceBrotha

    SpaceBrotha Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Yeah maybe they could blow up another major planet to the tune of Europe Endless!
     
  6. Herkimer Jitty

    Herkimer Jitty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  7. mysticgeek

    mysticgeek Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Actually speaking of Metal ... there is a band called Stovokor who dress as Klingons and play metal ... I remember seeing them in one of the Trekkies movies... hey they are famous! They have a MySpace page!
    http://www.myspace.com/stovokor
     
  8. mysticgeek

    mysticgeek Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Wow. I don't know what to say
     
  9. SpaceBrotha

    SpaceBrotha Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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  10. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Don't forget the DS9 holo-charactor Vic Fontane, swing music and the big band sound.

    The space hippie did 1960's electronic, I'm not sure what Uhura's singing was called.
     
  11. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well, the problem with doing pop music is it dates fast and ties your series to a certain era. How many different forms of pop music emerged in the last century? Which ones will still be big in the 23rd century? Will they have been replaced by different forms of pop?

    I think the last is most likely. We'd see new pop, new instruments and wholly new ways of looking at music and it's sort of impossible to try and predict how.

    Classical music, however, well, it's been with us for centuries. It's not unreasonable to assume it'll still be with us a few centuries from now. It's basically the safest bet for any future society, particularly as the use of classical music also won't date your show.

    I would have liked more modern and experimental classical music on the series (in another thread, I observed I really liked the touch of Philip Glass in BSG), but you could argue that's liable to pretty much the same problem as pop music: What if any of it will stand the test of centuries like the rest of the repetoire has done?

    Oh, and electronic music is sort of a sci-fi cliche, and we don't even know how many of those early electronic instruments will still be used centuries from now - maybe they'll have been replaced with more complicated machines or something. ;)
     
  12. jazzstick

    jazzstick Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Let em clear the air with an appt qoute from one of my musical heroes!

    "I'll tell you what classical music is, for those of you who don't know. Classical music is this music that was written by a bunch of dead people a long time ago. And it's formula music, the same as top forty music is formula music. In order to have a piece be classical, it has to conform to academic standards that were the current norms of that day and age ... I think that people are entitled to be amused, and entertained. If they see deviations from this classical norm, it's probably good for their mental health. "
    -Frank Zappa.

    So go wit classical music because it stands the test of time? Give me a break, its stand the test of "OUR" time, besides like Frank said, its do different from pop. So if classical and jazz are the only two human musics really played in Star Trek, I guess what that should tell us is all the music in the show was an attempt to please the social class of people in "OUR" society that have the power and money, just like the dead kings and queens of past historical periods! Whose to say 300 years in the future Death Metal doesn't mutate to another form of music, and like jazz it becomes accepted into the main stream, so like today, stuffed shirts and elitist !@#$% can sit around on their fat white asses sipping overpriced booze feeling like their superior and sophisticated by looking like they know good music!

    “If classical music is the state of the art, then the arts are in a sad state”
    -Frank Zappa.
     
  13. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    There are actually living classical composers so this is an incorrect assumption.

    Depends on the piece. The romantic repetoire has been around for over a hundred years, and baroque's even older. We don't know if anyone will listen to Frank Zappa a hundred years after his death, but we do know people listened to Mozart in a hundred years after his death. So projecting classical music into the future is just more logical.

    I think it'd be fairer to say pop is no different from folk music and music hall jingles (item: who listens to the music hall hits of the late 1800s anymore?), but anyway.
     
  14. jazzstick

    jazzstick Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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  15. jefferiestubes8

    jefferiestubes8 Commodore Commodore

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    This is a good thread topic. just last week i started a topic in FUTURE OF TREK asking who they would like to compose season 6 Trek series music for the episodes.

    Classical music for character development of a character playing an instrument on-camera doesn't date the show i agree. i would like to see a character program a computer to auto-compose a song. We already have that technology.
     
  16. AntonyF

    AntonyF Official Tahmoh Taster Administrator

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    To be honest, the TNG crew came across as a boring bunch of twats. No TV, no drinking... their fun was going to piano concerts or poetry recitals. Dear god... no wonder they needed a counselor.

    At least DS9 had booze, Vic Fontaine, baseball and holosuites. And they actually cooked food.
     
  17. tharpdevenport

    tharpdevenport Admiral Admiral

    Count me in as never. Not a single day in my life, have a had one tiny obit of alcohol. Alcohol free, feel fine, and I'm fit.

    More like educated, cultural, and into the arts.

    And we never really saw much of the TNG private life anyway. Recall Picard dancing to mambo(?) in Insurrection, and I even remember someone -- maybe Riker -- having cooked a meal and serving it in his quarters.
     
  18. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Actually, that is an assumption, not a fact. There are mainstream living composers, though it's true probably the most mainstream classical compositions are film music.

    Look, have you seen the episode "Suddenly Human"? There's a scene in that episode where a human teenager named Jono is up listening to loud pop music. Go watch that scene - the music that Jono, a being from three hundred years into the future, who grew up among aliens, listens to... well, it sounds painfully 80s, doesn't it?

    This is precisely the problem. The greats of classical music can be added to but for the most part are largely constant, they don't feel dated because even when the episode was made they're hundreds of years old. Pop music is considerably more fickle - if there is anything that's going to still be listened to in centuries, it's really anyone's bet as to what. (The Beatles maybe? There's a conservative guess.)

    All we could say for certain is that there will be new forms of pop music. We have no idea what they'd sound like, and any attempt by us to replicate it will probably sound dated a couple of decades from now. Another non-Trek example is the music of the Krell in Forbidden Planet, compositions by a super-advanced alien race... which sound like the experimentally electronic score of the movie, which is primitive by today's standards, to say nothing of the staggering heights of civilization this alien race achieved. So it's perhaps best not to stray too far into this area, and there's the added corrollary that we don't know what or if pop music of the present will have a role in the future.

    So, just as having your future characters talk about Hamlet is a safer bet talking about The Dark Knight, classical music is a viable constant. That's not me even claiming that it's better, just that it has a later expiry date.

    As to what's considered classical music... making music old doesn't make it classical. Which is why I brought up the music hall hits - and even older, folk music. However there is a longstanding tradition of adapting and blending forms of popular and classical music, from the Hungarian Rhapsodies of Brahms to George Gershwin's compositions to even modern classical renditions of the Beatles and other rock groups. It's entirely possible that elements of rap could be incorporated into classical works (and may have already been done so, though I'd be ignorant of that.)

    Teetotaller. Never touched the stuff in my life. I down inordinate amounts of caffeine and have dreadful eating habits, but hey, I don't drink alcohol.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2009
  19. Steve Roby

    Steve Roby Commodore Commodore

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    Speaking as a longtime fan of electronic music... the point a few people have made about it making a movie or series sound dated is a very good one. Some of it holds up very well, like the 1960s Radiophonic Workshop stuff for Doctor Who; some of it sounds horribly dated and cheesy, like a lot of 1980s Doctor Who music. Besides, it's not like electronic music is one style of music. Tangerine Dream and Burial are pretty damn far apart, stylistically.

    Classical music has lasted for centuries. Jazz, most of a century. Rock and hiphop have been around for a few decades, but they have changed and evolved a lot in that time. TNG started in the late 1980s. Suppose they'd tried to be hip by featuring some rock song from the top 40 back then in an episode. Starship? Whitesnake? Bon Jovi? I might have been in a minority for considering that sort of music crap in 1987, but none of it is exactly timeless; it'd date an episode of TNG way more than using Beethoven or Thelonious Monk would.
     
  20. JarodRussell

    JarodRussell Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I was never a fan of these kind of anachronism in Trek. That obsession of the Trek characters with the 20th century... I think it's very unrealistic.