I forgot who said it, but a long time ago someone said that we would run out of new music. That there was only a finite number of songs and that we were close to running out of new material. You can see a modern form of this argument here. And then shortly after that Mozart (or someone like that) came on the scene and proved him/her totally wrong.
Well, it seems like an untestable hypothesis to me, something you can’t prove or disprove. So, instead of trying to figure this out logically, I’ll just say where my feelings lie…
…I feel that this assertion is baloney. The potential number of songs is infinite. As long as people are around, they will be writing more music. With an infinite number of notes to choose from, these songwriters will create an infinite number of songs. So, there will be more Mozarts, more Dylans and infinitely more songs to come.
What triggered this was, as usual, a road trip. As you know, I recently went down to South Carolina to check out the eclipse. Driving through the swamps, forests and cities of the South, I would tune into new station after new station. Rock, hip-hop, pop, college stations, top 40. Whatever, just tuning in and listening to it all. And some of the sounds coming out of the South, Georgia and North Carolina especially, are definitely new and different. I’ll be honest: I don’t like all of it or even most of it, but some of it is pretty good. And it sounds unlike what we’re listening to now. It’s fresh and different. Just when you thought the well was exhausted, up comes this pail brimming with new water. That’s how it goes.
Where does this touch fiction writing? It doesn’t directly. But, I guess, I’ve realized lately how I haven’t focused on a wide range of influences in literature. I have limited myself to a too-narrow spectrum of voices. I’ve narrowed down, too much, the infinite choices of literature that are on offer. I especially tend to read “classics” and older stuff and it’s time to mix that up. I’ve made that change in my musical diet and now I need to do it in my fiction reading diet.
So, that’s going to change. Starting now. I’ve written on this blog about Hemingway, Poe, Cervantes—but now it’s time to open up the horizons a bit wider. It’s been time…I’ll let you know who it goes.
That’s all for now. I will only add that I’m still writing and, importantly, still enjoy writing fiction. There’s still nothing like creating a world from scratch—with nothing more than an idea and PC with a Word processor. I’m keeping it up and will let you know about progress here when there is something to report.
See You Next Time,