Nov 20 2006

What Is Ailing Pop Music? Depends Whom You Ask

Maybe you’ve seen the trailer. A guy in a cheap suit jacket, brandishing a big microphone, approaches some unsuspecting young women after a concert. He is making a documentary, allegedly. His manner is naïve, but the questions he asks are plainly insulting. Still, the women are kind enough to play along. He says something weird about bra-burning. They respond politely. Nice. But this isn’t that fake documentary “Borat.” It’s a real documentary, or at any rate an earnest one: “Before the Music Dies.”
“Before the Music Dies” is the work of a couple of concerned music fans, Andrew Shapter and Joel Rasmussen, who set out to document the decline of “raw, undeniable talent,” as Mr. Shapter puts it, “the kind that doesn’t seem to be around as much in these days of instant pop stars.” The satellite radio network XM is broadcasting the film as an audio documentary.
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