It is so easy to listen to a new song, another song, today. Its just a click away. Every one of us can listen to pretty much every single song ever released at just the click of a button.
When this is the case, hardly anyone sits through the full three or four or five or six minutes of a song when she can flip to the next song (that may be slightly better at that moment) after listening to the first few seconds.
When we are spoilt for choice, it is natural to select the familiar and the popular easing the decision making process. After all, many of us are not connoisseurs of music. This is why new artists try so hard to make it to the Billboard Top 20. Because that will make them automatic choices for many lazy listeners looking for new music who will choose the familiar and the popular.
What happens is we cease becoming adventurers and participants in this grand experiment of art, and we simply become consumers and really good commodity experts.
- Richard Powers
When there is commoditization of a product, the quality invariably hits the lowest common denominator. This is good for nobody in the long run.
For the past few years, I have been giving every song five full listens at the minimum before I remove it from my playlist. I automatically rate a new song 5 stars and reduce a star every time I listen to it and don't really enjoy it.
I'm still guilty of choosing the familiar and the popular when it comes to movies and TV shows though. And to a certain extent, books. I'm changing all of that gradually.