Thursday, May 3, 2012

Cool in the Fourth Dimension


Recently, Keith Richards (yes, THE Keith Richards) was in the studio (no, no our studio) complaining that his kids thought he was un-cool.  Can you imagine?  And if Keith can be un-cool, what hope is there for the rest of us?

Very few things are universally cool.  I would say the Rolling Stones, at least at one time, were pretty close. But from their kids’ perspective, none of that matters, and they’re un-cool.

However, cool is not only a function of perspective, but of time as well.  Think about the stuff that was cool when you were a kid.  Most of it becomes deeply un-cool at some point, and then becomes ultra retro-cool later on.  All a function of the fourth dimension.

Because Omnimusic has been around for over 30 years, we’ve seen this in our own library.  Tracks that were insanely cool when they first came out lost the cool factor for awhile, and now are retro-cool.  We actually have Disco tracks, for instance, that were released in the disco era!  So when you want authentic Disco, voila!

It’s kind of fun watching tracks like this have a second life, but you’ve got to keep on top of it with the metadata.  At one point, we had to go back and tag all the stuff that was released in the 1980s as “80’s” music.  Of course, when it came out it was just contemporary music.  Now it’s its own genre.

So when you’re looking for stuff from previous eras, don’t forget to check with the people who were there releasing it when it was the newest thing.

And thanks to Keith, you know you don’t have to listen to your kids’ take on your coolness.

Cool.

-Dave Hab