What's the Worth?
Arguably, it has never been easier and cheaper to listen to music than today. Online stores and streaming services are at our disposal 24 hours a day. Making and recording music has also become much more affordable and a whole lot easier than 20-30 years ago. Has this eroded the value of music, both financially and culturally? Many people I know say yes: it has become a commodity that is far too easily accessible and is less appreciated by the public than it used to be.
I tend to disagree. I see a much wider, much more diverse audience for music than ever before and a much greater number of musicians trying to cater for their needs. A lot of music that would have never reached me 20 years ago is on my playlist, artists from (almost) every corner of the world. Musicians and their work still have a major influence on our tastes and even our political views. And yes, I may hear a lot less rock n' roll in rotation on FM radio but that doesn't mean that there is less adventurous, thought provoking music out there. The fact that, say, Childish Gambino is more adept on a sampler than an electric sitar doesn't make his work any less meaningful or interesting. Making it big on the scene has always been the privilege of a selected few and most musicians will have a hard time just making a living. But that has always been the case.
Fame and fortune are the wrong reasons to get into any line of work. It's there for us to chase but it's the journey that you have to enjoy. Otherwise, you'll have very little pleasure in the eventual rewards. So quit bitching about how things have changed and learn from the guys who adapt successfully.