Hello all, it has been a while since I wrote an article here on Word Press. I like to put my weird and wonderful spin on things. I feel I have Black Sheep Syndrom. Self diagnosed because I am nothing like my family. I mean lots of people go through the same things, they may be white and they like black music so they are teased beyond recognition; even by their family. They may be Spanish and like Goth music and be teased by their family. I could go on all day here but I wrote Do You Realise You Are Stereotyping Yourself? in 2015.
I would like to take a walk through music history and ask why I feel there may be a divide. It is weird and not wonderful how music has suddenly created psychological prejudice towards one another; we all know if we do this – we look foolish and ignorant, then people begin to think…. “they really have no clue!”. Here is why…
Blues and Rock n’ Roll were the birth of metal. Many bands and solo artists from the 1960’s like Motorhead, Aerosmith, Rolling Stones, Led Zepplin, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, AC/DC, Bruce Springsteen where influenced by Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley , B.B King , who recorded Blues and Rock n’ Roll at a recording studio named Sun Recordings by Sun Philips . Of course, Sun wanted to make money out of this new sound sensation in the 50’s he even had Howlin’ Wolf, Roscoe Gordon, James Cotton, Roy Orbison, to name a few . This became popular music and was globalised because you could hear Elvis played on the radio around the globe. I picture everyone’s source of entertainment in the 1950’s was based around the radio because not everyone could afford a black and white television. I also see it was a good social event for people to get together and talk about what they just listened to. I do think we have that now but in smaller sub cultures.
I am a child from the 80’s and I specifically remember artists like Prince and Tina Turner using the rock and roll and blues, to bring people together. I specifically remember Tina Turner having so many hits in Europe and even England. This was boundary breaking because she really did have an impact on society. I feel this was due to capital records her record label and how they ensured Tina collaborated with Eric Clapton, Bryan Adams, Rod Stewart, Cher, Paul McCartney, and Mick Jagger; Even Prince got together with Madonna, Sheena Easton, Stevie Nicks and Sheila E. with everyone’s favourite B side track ‘Let’s Go Crazy‘.
I mean, I am weird and wonderful and I have noticed mainstream artists after our ‘integration phase’, are not that willing to collaborate with different bands or genre’s outside of their comfort zone to create a little world peace right now. I am arguing at their approach to not subjectively look at the plight of popular music and the fact that everything sounds the same in the charts, is this becoming irrelevant to whom we are now? Or is it shaping that divide further?
I am from the generation that saw Anthrax collaborate with Public Enemy Bring the noise which became a mainstream track. I even had the pleasure of seeing Aerosmith and RUN DMC live Walk this Way. Now, I am a black sheep because I retained all this knowledge and decided, I like rock more. I thank these artists because when I was 8 or 9 I really was influenced by their multicultural appeal and the fact they tried to respectfully make tracks together with other cultures, there was no divide in my mind. Even Gun’s and Roses, were influenced by blues and rock n’ roll. There seriously was not a division in my mind. So why is the segregation there now?
One of the most famous influential TV stars of the 21st Century , Ice -T has a band called Body Count, who has toured with bands such as Motorhead, Faith No More, Marylin Manson, Black Sabbath and Ghost just to name a few. However, Ice – T and Lemmy had song for Airheads the film, Born to Raise hell. This is really symbolic and every time I hear someone say that people who like metal are racists, I look at the person, really deeply and I wonder if they are really apart of this planet. Why is there a divide in their mind?
I also like Punk for the raw emotional grit in the sound from the Misfits to the Sex Pistols, then to NOFX. Punk is not a genre you can toy with, Green Day have continued the genre in mainstream music and I love what they have done but it does feel as though the divide is up again. I liked it when Ska was predominant in bands like Rancid and you could relate immediately with the sort of cultural influences and I am even more thankful for NO- Doubt continuing it on into mainstream pop. I like knowing this because it is what I became. My life is seeing bands. I accept this about myself. I accept that not everyone is going to understand the bands that I am even talking about or would not even dream of hearing them. This was it, we had radio’s in those days and we weren’t segregated by things like the internet which can be quite exclusively required; specifically looking at facebook and how they have changed the advertising settings to your likes. We are no longer listening to different styles or having a culture clash on the radio which was fun. The divide is there now.
I seriously began to feel sorry for people who were discriminated against for liking certain genres of music. I feel saddened by the franchise of music and hopeless because I grew up in such an open minded generation, only, for things to seriously have regressed to this despicable racist view of the world from the specifically the black community by not forcing their artists to collaborate more. So here is my forthcoming argument, why are we having this segregating #black lives matter suppressible movement? I am arguing about artist like Rihanna and Beyonce not being as impactual as Tina was because they seem to have created this race divide. I am not really understanding the whole….. ‘them against us’ notion. I do not feel racial divides belong with music because it is meant to connect us all together.
I have heard two sides to the argument of song writers and Simon Cowell. I have heard about this denial to not approach racial divides and taking the tones of music to blend them so it sounds ‘black’…..how inferior is that? Come on, when you think about it collaborations create more of an international appeal. Like A Simple Plan and Sean Paul, sometimes, it works and other times it does not. It feels like musicians can never appeal to the young because there is too much focus on segregating a person with the internet. The radio is losing the battle of our interest.
I have noticed how globalisation and big corporations have been in charge of the music industry for a decade now with X – factor or Britains Got Talent, or America’s got talent. Let’s be honest, they have created this divide, not, the people themselves. According to Simon Frith (1996) if there is a divide with the popular music identity then we are unable to relate to one another or identify with one another. So, if song writers are out there producing music and collaborating with other artists and they are unheard of because of the focus of ol’ music then we will never hear change and charts are influenced by air play. I mean I can identify with Frith (1996) as he states:
“Identity is mobile; a process not a thing, a becoming not a being; second that our experience of music – of music making and music listening – is best understood as an experience of the self- in – process.”
You can change and adapt your identity and it is okay to do so.I feel it is necessary to remind people to live a little and try these things. Especially discovering who you actually are instead of following a crowd or a style.
I really do not know why everyone has embarked upon this holy crusade to judge people. This globalisation theory and the control has created racial tension. I feel as a black sheep whom relates more to Johnny Cash wearing black than Beyonce pretending to be her idol Tina Turner but felt she had created more division.
I actually hear people from the black community say: ‘Amy Winehouse sounds so black.” This makes me feel like saying, “so you only want to identify with other’s who are interested in your culture, why not be curious about trying other cultures?” I felt the more insecure about their own inner selves they are the more they tend to pick on a person like Michael Jackson about his colour and identity.
I morn, for those who are not able to express what they truly like and have an identity of their own. I morn, for them and I wear black. Micheal Jackson expressed himself and was able to paint the picture of how torn he was by his own father, who beat him. He as unable to find himself as a person and what really hurts the most is that people just want to see colour. Micheal’s identity changed because he could no longer even identify with his own family due to a medical condition. However, it could be argued that Micheal was unable to relate to people because he was a child star- then, his adult life was confusing and showed he was not able to grow up. Hence the reason why he got into so much trouble with Neverland. He saw himself as Peter Pan. I mean, come on, we all know that is someone who was really pushed as a child to perform. Many celebrities are able to show creative gender posed notions and I like this, I feel as though it is okay if a man is comfortable with himself that he wants to wear a certain item of clothing and dance…so be it. Where is the creativity if you stop the people from becoming what they need to become? I accept Prince was funky. I accept Marylin Manson had boobs. I accept that Micheal Jackson did the moonwalk and had seriously been worn down.
I really am not trying to be sheepish about my attitude towards Metal and Death Metal.I love Killswitch Engage and I appreciate the fact that Jesse Leech inspires us all by discussing such things as well. I really am happy being me. I finally, get to see the bands I like and also enjoy the company of other’s whom like the same things as myself. I really, think it takes a lot of courage to stand out from the crowd and say:
“Actually, I am a bit weird, I like …….”
So, I learned a lot more than my family and I am okay with it, but, I am not okay with them always disliking what I have become. I feel, this is a perfectly normal rational reaction because we all experience things differently and we all feel things differently.
I feel accepting that you have black sheep syndrom and you really cannot relate to anything about Black lives matter is okay also. I feel I provided enough evidence to disagree with more segregation. I feel it must be really hard for most people to accept who they are and that maybe they are better off being an individual for a while. It’s okay for the world to focus on local problems instead of thinking they have to resolve global issues. What is not okay is to keep ignoring those problems and hope they disappear.
I appreciate my journey a lot more now and I feel like I would not change it for the world. I am weird and wonderful, please, keep being weird and wonderful also.