On episode 27 If it aint broke dont fix it the shop crew discussed classic albums and what defines a classic. Everything was thrown out there..sound, setting trends, topics on the album, and the ability to stay relevant within a 2-5 year window and beyond of being released.
An important factor that we missed and I think alot of people miss when defining a classic is timing. Some classics were simply released at the right time.
A classic can capture the essence of its era. What the world was feeling at that time, what direction it was headed. How the masses felt at that time and when people hear that album years later it's like a history lesson. If you weren't alive during that time period you feel like you were, if you were alive during that time it takes you back to the "good ol days".
Classic albums and the artist who made them can also be visionary in their direction of the album. The Blueprint's sound was visionary as at that point in time rap was moving in a soulful backdrop sound. Marvin Gayes what's going on album
embodied the despair and sadness of that time and you still feel it today. If What's going on or mercy mercy me plays right now it's still so relevant and you feel the music. The Thriller album fused pop and rock together bringing it to the forefront creating a new sound on its own. Tupacs 7 day theory is praised for its prophetic tone. To pimp a butterfly came out during a time where we as black people are fighting a different type of civil rights movement, and realize how much has remained the same despite advancements. Years from now people will listen to that album as a lesson that no matter what, we keep pushing we'll be alright.
Even a debatable "classic" such as Get Rich or Die Tryin was a perfect time capsule of its era. The chronic, college dropout, illmatic, ready 2 die, dont be cruel, heartbreak, control, confessions, 20/20 experience, College dropout, Purple Rain the list goes on.
When we talk about classics we always add the sound of a album, a album being ahead of its time, having so many hits that have carried on through the years, created a genre or making it more more mainstream as factors that factors into albums being dubbed a classic. The timing of album's releases and it's era have to be included in the conversation.
About The Author
B.Easy is the co-host of Talkin' Suplexes. He's a self-professed geek loving movies, wrestling, comic books, and using his imagination. Goal in life is become to a world traveler and get paid to hop on lear jets.