Jon Bon Jovi contends that Steve Jobs is single-handedly killing the music industry. He longs for the 80s, a time I remember VERY fondly, when an entire album was constructed carefully to tell a story and to take you to many places. Some were places I did not want to go, but had to endure to get to the next song. When CDs were introduced it was wonderful to be able to skip to our favorites without being exposed to the other songs the artist placed on his or her finished piece. Instant selection. MP3s and the advent of Napster further revolutionized music, and ‘moved the cheese’ of an entire industry. iPods and iTunes followed.
JBJ told the Sunday Times Magazine: “Kids today have missed the whole experience of putting the headphones on, turning it up to 10, holding the jacket, closing their eyes and getting lost in an album.” You know, this is true. I LOVED staring at the album covers of my favorite artists and disappearing in the music. I also dearly remember my walkman, my bulky earphones that were constantly sliding off of my head and playing music WAY too loudly. My mom shouting, “TURN THAT THING DOWN! YOU’LL GO DEAF!” Ah, 1986…Slippery When Wet. However, in 2011 as a more mature, sophisticated and BUSY adult I crave effiiciency of schedules and resources. I don’t have the luxury of surplus time (or patience) to listen to an entire album. I like my artist’s specific songs. I like my podcasts. I like what I like, in a Universe I have crafed in my safe & custom iWorld.
Jon is missing a HUGE opportunity to grow here and to capitalize on the ever-changing face of music. Never before has music from so many genres, artists, countries, unknowns (Justin Beeber anyone?), amateurs to indy professionals been so readily available to the masses. Overnight sensations are a reality now. Bon Jovi paid their dues and did an amazing job in their day, and have continued to make amazing music (Lost Highway & The Circle) and to tour. However, JBJ resents what he does not understand completely. Extrapolate this out, and he’ll see the opportunity. But he’s looking back and that is no way to move forward.
The youth of today are largely more comfortable with their computers and hand-held devices than they are with people. If he embraced that, and what Steve Jobs has done to bring not only the music of Bon Jovi to so many, he would recognize the power his music continues to have, multi-generationally speaking.
Come on, Jon. Give Steve a hug. It’s time for you to WOW us again!