Musical Burnout
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Doc Sarvis

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Over the years, I've obsessively gotten interested in a particular band, composer, type of music, etc. Particularly with rock music, though, if I'm not careful I can get sick of the music I'm obsessing over, and then it's never the same again. In recent years I've even taken care not to give in to my desire to overdose on whatever music I'm into, so that the inevitable saturation point doesn't happen.

Example: I was once completely into the band Midnight Oil. I listened to them day and night, bought all their releases and B-sides, chased them down in concert, etc. Until one day I realized that I was sick of them. And even though I've listened to them since on occasion, it's just not the same.

Does this happen to anyone else?
 
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Bunnyears

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It happened to me years ago with Vivaldi. For years, I couldn't listen to anything by the composer. It didn't help that whenever I was in an elevator or in an upscale cafe, the 4 seasons was invariable running through the sound system. I actually went to the management of a hotel where I had gone on vacation to beg them to change the music in the restaurant where we ate breakfast; it was a 4 seasons loop that drove me crazy.

Now, thankfully, I've moved past that but, Vivaldi will never be in the front ranks of preferred listening and I take good care not to burn myself out on anything else by rotating between obsessions.
 
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pframe

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For me it was Miles Davis and Elvis Costello, hard as it was to believe when it happened. Fortunately, my Miles and Elvis grooves came back quite a while ago.
 
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DJ e

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Oh, yes. I'm smack in the middle of musical burnout right now. Must...buy...more...
 
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MD1032

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I know exactly what you're talking about. I got so into Michael Jackson back in the day and now all of my favorite songs by him are "burnt out", like permanently it seems.

This happened with a couple "The Who" (my favorite band BTW) songs, unfortunately, good ones, too. It seems like once a week every three months or so I go "Quadrophenia" crazy though and start listening to that and other The Who songs.

Dream Theater, however, is a completely different beast. I'll be obsessed with one album one week, then get burnt out, then go to another, than another, and then maybe back to the beginning. I've been listening to these guys for months and with the release of Octavarium things are only going to get better.

And music never leaves my head now. There isn't a second that passes in the day when I don't have something running through my head. It used to affect my sleep about a year ago during a musical stage of my life I guess.
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Doc Sarvis
Example: I was once completely into the band Midnight Oil. I listened to them day and night, bought all their releases and B-sides, chased them down in concert, etc.


That's funny, because I've listened to Midnight Oil a great deal over the years and even got front row concert tix for them. I guess I've never burned out on an artist because I just naturally start listening to someone else, but always mix in my favorites.
 
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recstar24

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Give it some time, abstinence does make the heart grow fonder...i was obsessed with radiohead, still am, but there was a period where i needed to withdraw for a while, there's only so much of thom yorke that you can absorb, the melodrama was killing me...

One thing that helps me with burnout is to stop listening to music in the car and during commuting. What was happening was that i was surrounding myself with music 24/7 - at school as a choir director, in the car, during the commute on the train and bus, when i got back home, its insane and its sensory overload, you need to rest. By cutting out the music aspect from the car and commute, like total dead silence, i started to appreciate the music more.

Another thing that helps is to really treat the music you love like its special - its not background music while you surf the web, engage yourself in it and simply let go and lose yourself within it, you'll appreciate it and feel it more as a spiritual experience, rather than as a secondary type of thing to whatever your doing...
 
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In high school I played 40 Oz to Freedom by Sublime, Under the Table and Dreaming by Dave Matthews Band and Purple by Stone Temple Pilots so much I got sick of them.

To avoid this issue, and to make sure my collection gets evenly rotated, when I got my iPod I made a smart playlist called "0" with songs that had a playcount of 0. I listened to the music from this playlist until it was empty and then I made a playlist called "1" that had all the tunes with a playcount of 1. Of course, I wasn't a Nazi about it, if I really wanted to hear an album, I'd play it, but this method has helped me hear all my collection, though it does take a long time.
 
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recstar24

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viator,

very creative, i commend your thinking!
 
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Mark from HFR

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Doc Sarvis
Over the years, I've obsessively gotten interested in a particular band, composer, type of music, etc. Particularly with rock music, though, if I'm not careful I can get sick of the music I'm obsessing over, and then it's never the same again. In recent years I've even taken care not to give in to my desire to overdose on whatever music I'm into, so that the inevitable saturation point doesn't happen.

Example: I was once completely into the band Midnight Oil. I listened to them day and night, bought all their releases and B-sides, chased them down in concert, etc. Until one day I realized that I was sick of them. And even though I've listened to them since on occasion, it's just not the same.

Does this happen to anyone else?



I once avoided all Mozart for a year because I had been sound designer for a theatre production of "Amadeus" and I spent many, many hours searching through his music for just the right passages to play. Worked great, but made me sick of Mozart for a long time!
 
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I tend to burn out on some stuff, but can listen to other stuff over and over again. However, I can feel a burn out coming, so I can switch to other stuff for a while. Of course, most of the music I am burned out on wasn't terribly good to begin with. I don't regret OD'ing on Rush or ELP, in retrospect.
 
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Doc Sarvis

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Quote:

Originally Posted by PSmith08
I tend to burn out on some stuff, but can listen to other stuff over and over again. However, I can feel a burn out coming, so I can switch to other stuff for a while. Of course, most of the music I am burned out on wasn't terribly good to begin with. I don't regret OD'ing on Rush or ELP, in retrospect.


I agree, except for the fact that I still love Rush and ELP!

One test of whether music will stand for the ages is how well it holds up to repeated listenings without inducing fatigue. That's why I think so much modern pop is doomed to obscurity despite archival recording.
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by recstar24
viator,

very creative, i commend your thinking!



Thank you. This has worked out well for me, and I recommend everyone give it a shot. Gives you great variety, you don't burn out on stuff, and you get to hear things you might not otherwise play.
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Doc Sarvis
I agree, except for the fact that I still love Rush and ELP!

One test of whether music will stand for the ages is how well it holds up to repeated listenings without inducing fatigue. That's why I think so much modern pop is doomed to obscurity despite archival recording.



There comes a point when you know all the songs by heart that there is no fun in the music. Also, Wagner, Mahler, Bruckner, Beethoven, and company have ruined modern music for me.

ELP was a good group, but there is only so much word-play and blank allusiveness I can tolerate. Rush was better before they started restricting songs to 3-5 minutes.

As for modern music, I cannot think of more than one or two songs worth preserving. There are three styles of music today: maudlin pop, pop, and angry rock. One sample from each should be sufficient.
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by PSmith08
I tend to burn out on some stuff, but can listen to other stuff over and over again. However, I can feel a burn out coming, so I can switch to other stuff for a while. Of course, most of the music I am burned out on wasn't terribly good to begin with. I don't regret OD'ing on Rush or ELP, in retrospect.



I burned out on Rush in the early 90's after listening to them for 7 years obsessively. Its only been in the past 3 years that I've gotten back into them. I think its kind of reliving my adolescence or something, now that I'm 33 LOL.

I also burned out on reggae big time. I built a huge collection: Dancehall, Lovers, Ragga, Dub, International, Rocksteady, Ska, read all the authoritative books on the genre, and then... got bored of it. I still have a nice dub collection and discs by my favorite artists, but I've sold off 80% of my reggae collection in the past 4 years. Don't miss most of it- except for my copy of Lee Perry's Super Ape, which I want again but is now out of print!
 
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