Saturday, December 19, 2020

2020 music mashups begin

‘Tis the season for end-of-year year videos of various kinds. As a dedicated follower, so to speak, of pop music, I always look forward to year-end music video mashups. This year is no different, except that I’ll have at least two posts about it this year.

I’m starting with DJ Earworm because I’ve shared those mashups more than any other. I posted his 2019 mashup video on January 2 of this year because last year’s end wasn’t pleasant. At all. Of course. I said in last year’s post:
…As with last year’s video, I’m familiar with a lot of the videos, and even shared some of them. That’s unlikely to be true this year since I don’t watch music videos as much as I used to. Oh, well.
This year I’m even more familiar with the songs because, contrary to my expectations, I did, in fact, “watch music videos as much as I used to” because the video music TV channels returned this year. In fact, there are times when there are four different channels broadcasting at once (most of the time there are only the two that may be going away at some point).

All of which means that, again, I did share some of the videos in the mashup above, and there are other songs I planned to share, but just didn’t get around to it because I wasn’t feeling up to blogging. Maybe I’ll make a series of posts on missed videos or something.

In any case, all video music mashups vary in how much I like them, which must be the reaction of others, too. Some years I really like a DJ’s work, other years, well, not as much. I’m afraid this year is one of the latter kind.

To be brutally honest, I’m getting quite tired of manipulated and filtered audio tracks. I realise it ends up evening out the sound, making it more like one comprehensive work rather than a string of unrelated songs, but so many songs start out with vocals that have been manipulated and filtered that it begins to sound, at best, way over-produced and, at worst, silly. In my opinion, of course—others will have their own opinions. Obviously. Arthur’s Law and all that.

Still, on balance, I do like this year’s mashup, and I noted the appearance of a New Zealand artist, Jawsh 685, who with Jason DeRulo had a big hit with “Savage Love”—one of the videos I meant to share this year. I was also reminded, for the millionth time, that I simply cannot understand (at all) why Billie Eilish is so popular. But, yeah, Arthur’s Law.

Which brings me to who’s in and who’s left out. I think it’s impossible to please everyone, and the somewhat short length of the video makes it absolutely impossible. Like anyone else, I think there are some oversights and some overplayed. That’s life, and it doesn’t necessarily change how much I like or don’t like a mashup.

Actually, just yesterday DJ Earworm provided an example of how incredibly difficult it must be to select songs. He posted a video, “Time of Our Lives: Songs from EVERY YEAR (1970-2020)” (video at the bottom of the post) in which he includes snippets of popular songs from each of those years. As with every other mashup, some people will agree or disagree with the choices, and I certainly did both. I thought there were notable snubs and I also had no idea what some of the songs were, even for the years when I was far more attuned to pop music than I am now, like in my 20s when music seemed so all-important. In fact, there were plenty I didn’t know even when I checked the list of songs in the YouTube Description, which means it’s pretty much like any other music mashup, to be fair. Still, Arthur’s Law—I’m sure others will like it as is. My point is just that the more stripped-down video below demonstrates for me how incredibly difficult it must be to select a song, to choose between many good or even great choices.

I also must acknowledge that there’s no way in hell I could do one of these mashups. I’m not stupid enough to even daydream about doing one because there’s simply no way, no how, I could ever do it. So, in critiquing mashup videos, I’m not criticising the mashup-ers themselves. I admire what they do, and what they produce, and I’m very glad they do what they do. I just have my own opinions about the videos, as everyone does. Have I mentioned Arthur’s Law?

Let the mashing continue!

As in the past, the YouTube description for this year’s mashup video has a list of all the artists and their songs, listed by artist, in alphabetical order.

Previous DJ Earworm mash-ups on this blog:

The annual mashup post (2019)
DJ Earworm 2018 Mashup (2018)
DJ Earworm 2017 Mashup (2017)
First December Mashup (2016)
Season of mash-ups (2015) – First video
And the roundups begin (2014)
Poptastic assault (2013) – First video


Roger Owen Green said...

On that 50-year thing, I did great n the 1st 30, and terrible on the last 20.

Arthur Schenck said...

Also, it's kind of depressing to think of it covering 50 years when I remember all those years.