Big/ odd question, this one, but bare with me.
It's a pretty significant subject topic of enquiry because an answer to it would decide the platform on which all discussion regarding music, takes place.
Is the quality of music (and the value of the artist who creates it) a solely subjective issue when it really comes down to it? Is there really no objective difference between 'The Cheeky Song (Touch My Bum) and 'Stairway to Heaven' and hence, as a result, all discussion regarding one's taste in music is ultimately without greater consequence?
Ok, perhaps there is, and one can say the example there is too stark but at what point does it become less clear? Is there a difference in quality between 'Stairway To Heaven' and 'Yesterday'? Or does one consider that these two songs share a standard which makes them a part of a group of better quality music' which distinguishes them from something like'The Cheeky Song (Touch My Bum'? If so, what would that be? How do we differentiate between groups here?
Is there really objectivity involved in the quality of music - are the standards by which we decide what music is of greater value, objective things which do not at all rely on human opinion? That's a bizzare question to ask because it of course implies that some aspect of what makes up music is truely of greater quality and that truth claim is entirely independent of human beings...
If moral statements are objective ("murder is always wrong") then cannot it also be the case that a statement like "Piano Sonata No. 14 is exceptionally good" be objective in the same way? They are both normative statements after all. Both assert the value of a given subject.
Or, finally, is there a mixture of a subjective and an objective element in music?
Come on people, let's talk about something of real weight and substance, for once - let's contemplate a Platonic Form (which of course 'The Form of Music' is)