Just as the food channel tries to use ones basic desire for food and sex to reel in more viewers, other forms of mediated communication use tricks to get what they want. This practice is most evident in various ads one will see on TV, but there is another form of media that when it comes down to it, employs just as many techniques used to manipulate consumers and in my opinion they do it better.
The tricks of the music industry are numerous, and they each work in different ways. But in the end they have the same goal as the majority of the TV advertisements, making money. Let’s start with an obvious and well known one in auto tune, many artists nowadays use auto tune and other similar studio effects designed to make them sound better and smoother. The scary thing about auto tune is that it can be both blatantly obvious and completely unnoticeable. Due to recent rap artists using auto tune liberally people have this idea of auto tune in their minds that sounds like this . The would be manipulators know this and they also know they can get away using it without the majority of people noticing. People naturally expect some difference in the studio and live version of a song. But what happens sometimes is that people buy song since it sounds good on the radio but then when performed live, the artist’s voice sounds completely different
I’m not going to make this blog post a rant about auto tune and musical integrity, I just wanted to highlight that auto tune is a frequent manipulation used to unknowingly influence consumers. There are other techniques that influence us without actually changing the music at all.
Some artists frequently use a hype man in their concerts. Look no further than the recent sean kingston concert here at trinity. Did 20 minutes of some guy yelling, “PUT YO HANDS UP FO SEAN KINSTON ONE TIME” affect your perception of the music that came later? I would imagine that for some hearing real music after 20 minutes of waiting would be quite a relief. The excitement of actually listening to some music might make the music seem better than if he had just came out and played right away. The hype man could have also made the audience more excited for the main act; either way having a hype man manipulates the crowd and affects how the music is perceived.