Ambient – Quiet music for all ages

Started by petekelly, August 25, 2012, 07:11:15 AM

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Some thoughts on ambient and artists / listeners age, which may be of interest to some folks here:

'I recently watched a documentary about the age of the first generation of rock stars such as the Rolling Stones and other artists of their era, who were still going well into their sixties. It made me think about ambient music and the age of it's artists and listeners. A few years ago, you could have said that ambient was primarily for middle-aged fellers, judging by the online forum discussions, groups, reviews and the like. I think it's fair to say that the artists / listener demographics at the time would have shown this to be the case.

However, when I look at my page, for example. I find that a much wider cross section of people listen to ambient music than might have done so in the past. I think this is great, I would much rather have all manner of people listening to my (and other peoples) ambient material and I find it particularly interesting that this trend seems to be continuing. As regards artists, I think this diversity is the case as well, again I can only think this is a good thing. Unlike say, pop music, ambient isn't defined by a young artist / listener base and I think artists will release for as long as they want irregardless of age and (hopefully) listeners will still want to hear their work.

In my case, I got into ambient at the age of 20, I would imagine that may be unusual case, here's the background – I was living in a house with some Buddhists in Leeds, we had no TV, so we used to play a lot of records. One guy put on a record that I had not heard the like of before, it was 'The Pearl' by Harold Budd and Brian Eno. I was immediately taken by it's beautiful, delicate ethereality and I was 'turned on' to ambient, so to speak. Even though I was a very mentally speedy kind of person, the calming qualities of early Eno ambient works (in particular) were very valuable to me. Now that I'm approaching middle-aqe, I feel I'm slowing down much more in lots of ways and ambient is perhaps more important to me. I couldn't imagine not creating ambient music at this time in my life and I can now see more subtlety and nuance coming into my material as I get older...'

Full text here:

| broken harbour |

I agree Pete, well sort of...

I'm a fairly young guy to be writing this stuff at 30.  I got turned on to ambient music about 5 years ago.  I think ambient often appeals to those who find the pace of life to be a little too speedy and chaotic.  Depending on ones experiences and situation, you can reach this point young like myself, or 60, or anywhere in between.  By the time I was 25 I was already feeling like life was slipping by just a little too quickly, and the pace of everything just too intense.  Ambient filled a need in my life in that it forced me to sit down, relax, and just open up my mind to the music, and not think of the previous day and it's happenings.

I think most people in the western world reach that point at some time in their life, it just depends when.

When I look at the cross section on my own Last.FM page, it's all over the map, from 17 year olds to geriatrics.  :o


QuoteWhen I look at the cross section on my own Last.FM page, it's all over the map, from 17 year olds to geriatrics. 

Yeah Blake, that's what I was referring to, but I would use the term 'mature listeners' instead. :)



I have a large contingent of octagenarian fans  ... and I'm sure I spelled that wrong - and I'm not looking it up.  So there. 
John Koch-Northrup .: jkn [AT] .: owner / artist .: .: .: