While Enya is one of my favorite musicians, on the rare occasions when I see what she looks like, I find myself surprised that she is so pretty. Why? Perhaps her handlers have done a great job of making an ordinary woman look extraordinary, but I don’t think so.
q,I understand your thoughts on this topic, and I think it's a good general picture about today's popular music. If we were talking about well-known celebrity female entertainers I would totally agree. However in the case of Enya, many of your statements are not true. The music is composed and arranged by herself, instruments, vocals by herself not by her producer, Nicky Ryan. Of course Nicky also has a huge part in the music (arrangement as well, musical ideas, etc.).The image is defined by Enya. She said in an interview that she chooses carefully the photographer, the video clip director, the clothing designers, etc. so that the resulting image would be exactly what she wants.Anyway the image in her case is secondary, there are very few interviews, very few advertisements, no tours, most people can see her only on the CD cover, and the reason they buy it is not due to her image but the music.Yes, she has natural beauty (that differs from today's beauty trends) but she benefited from this very very little. In her case it was a rare coincidence of musical talent, wonderful voice, new musical ideas and beauty.Anyway here is the "raw" Enya at 46:http://gallery.ulster.ac.uk...
Enya is, in fact, stunning. She has begun to show her age, certainly, in some of the recent photos, which I think is what some of the commenters are talking about. But Enya is 48 years old, and for that, she looks fantastic. She's been in the music business for over 20 years and the photos on the internet are from all different periods in her career. If you look at photos from her earlier albums (Watermark, Shepherd Moons, etc.) she is generally not airbrushed but still looks absolutely gorgeous.
Perhaps you're idealizing your favorite musicians in a different way, letting the appeal of their music make them more appealing in other ways. Do you think she is particularly pretty by the standards of modern celebrities?To my eyes, Enya is reasonably attractive, but not especially so, based on the pictures on the web. Considering, as others have noted, the enormous effects a good make-up artist, fashion consultant, lighting technician, photographer, and digital editor have, her apparent beauty is not surprising even before you take sorting effects into consideration.
(Note: Girlfriend spontaneously made roughly the same comment as I did when she saw the post title.)
All your examples are radio stars from a bygone era. i.e. the pre-video era.
I agree with you on the ranking situation, though rather than say 'good enough' I'd say 'good enough for me;' Each person has a personal ranking algorithm which they should try to satisfice.
Are the successful academics who are relatively ugly, boring, lazy etc more brilliant? We might expect that to be the case in order to compensate for their other deficiencies.
I had also noticed a pattern of liking a song, and then when seeing the gal who sang it considering her pretty. I concluded that positive association or "the halo effect" were likely playing a role. Now I'm not so sure. The most salient example is "Give Me" by The Human Value. It sounded sexy on Pandora, and then I watched the video...not bad but nothing special. That Eva von Slut looked like Meatloaf wasn't a surprise at all though, since she sounds like Danzig. One more example of a band I can think of whose singer has a pretty voice but not face is Unshine.
Sorry, but this Enya as Jesus analogy is only thing that comes to mind from Enya.
Yes, but moreover the process by which the high-status jobs are filled does not necessarily guarantee - no, let me be frank, seems not at all that likely to pick the top candidate, or even close to the top candidate. Granted, one can define "top candidate" and "capable of filling" in a way which makes the actually existent process of selection correct by definition, but if one wants to assess the actually existent process, one cannot make such a circular assumption.
Why do you think we have too few musicians? ...why buy one of the CDs produced by world-ranked violinists 99-2, when #1 is right there?
Enya is not just a musician in the sense of a technical master of an instrument, but a composer, as are many who are called "musicians". While perhaps your parenthetical paraphrase is somewhat correct in that if you have a given piece performed by the #1 musician there is little reason to get the same piece performed by the #2 musician (though, frankly, I love my multiple recordings of the same stuff but set that aside), nevertheless it applies much less well to musicians as composers. For instance, if you're a classical fan, would you only want to listen to the music of your single favorite composer? Or might you want also to hear the music of your second-favorite composer fairly often? And your third and fourth and fifth and so on.
yes, i think we have enough music training, so in that sense there are enough musicians. i wouldn't open an academy for musicians.
I mean stronger correlation relative to others, not within the group..
Clearly tastes in music and beauty vary.
Why do you think we have too few musicians? Unless you're assigning some extremely large value to live performances, the cost of distributing music has fallen to ~0 and so we only need a few really good musicians, not hordes of mediocrities. (As one observation on the CD market I read went, why buy one of the CDs produced by world-ranked violinists 99-2, when #1 is right there?)
I have the definite impression that most real musicians are very poorly paid and only live a musical lifestyle for social reasons or love of the art; low salaries for a profession demanding technical mastery and extensive training would suggest that there's a large *over*supply of musicians, not under.
How very odd. I remember seeing an Enya music video just once, and thinking that she looked surprisingly normal and middle-aged for a woman in a music video, and applauding her or whoever decided to have the real person in the video instead of some stand-in.
"We should expect a weak correlation between beauty and musical ability in general due to assortative mating" – only if one assumes beauty is purely genetic; whereas it's subject to environmental conditions (from the fetal environment onwards) – including the environment that the individual's choices create for her body. It's easier for a smart, wealthy, or determined person to appear beautiful (think: having the time and inclination to exercise or sun protection and the competence to do so effectively, for example; as well as to employ more ephemeral tactics such as makeup or photoshop). These same attributes contribute to success in music and other fields too.