A response to everything being a remix

The notion that there is hardly any originality left in work today does not astound me at all. It is very common for artists and designers to find inspiration from works that have taken from other works and so and so forth. The reason why I am so unfazed by the massive amounts of borrowing, stealing, and inspiring that art has on people is because I hold a great interest in one a style of music that is steeped in “remixing” songs. Jazz, a style of music that has evolved throughout the 20th and 21st century, has it’s roots in the taking of old songs and putting a new twist on them. “My Favorite Things” from the Sound of Music has been covered by John Coltrane; “Autumn Leaves” has been covered time and time again by many different jazz artists. Jazz artists tend to take pop music from culture, and then sequentially change and morph the song in order to suit how they want to speak through it. The same basic ideas are present in the new version of the song, but the artist’s voice is placed into it in order to give the work a new meaning. Everything being a remix is totally fine, however blatant plagiarism and theft is another matter all together. If the work isn’t given any more value by refinement or remixing, then it shouldn’t be treated as such. It is simply theft and that’s that. Nothing that we see is truly original, but I think that human beings have enough common sense to differentiate between a work that is a direct copy or work that is simply steeped in inspiration from other works.

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