I have fond memories from my childhood of rockin’ out to Def Leopard with my Dad in the garage. Crusin’ down the street with my Mom blasting Bon Jovi. Attending my first concert at the tender age of 10 only to see AC/DC with a 50′ tall lingerie-clad blowup doll inflate on the stage in a matter of minutes to the tune of “Whole Lotta Rosie.” It used to be that those were the songs that you could hear on all of the radio stations, at all hours of the day. Yes, the ’90s were a great time for growing up entranced by rock and roll. As I got older, though, all the songs that I learned to love and cherish started moving from stations playing “The Music Of Today” to those “Remembering The Hits of Yesterday.” Unfortunately, this is what happens as time goes on-the new becomes ordinary and gets replaced by the new sounds of tomorrow.

But walking down this memory lane of screaming guitar riffs and long greasy hairstyles makes me wonder–when I am in my 40s, what will they play on the “classic hits” stations? Surely by that time most of the aforementioned music will be upwards of 60 years old and reserve the title of “oldies,” but what will be the music from my generation that are given the title of “classic hits?”

Surely there are some–Distrubed, Godsmack and Pearl Jam. Perhaps even more obscure bands like The White Stripes or The Classic Crime. What I cannot imagine, though, is the music that gets play time on hip hop stations. I mean, come on-Brittany Spears and Lindsay Lohan? Busta Rhymes and Fiddy Cent? These people have a hard enough time keeping their careers up for more than 10 years, let alone 40 (just tell me when the last time you heard anything significant put out by Busta Rhymes? For that matter, remember Sisqo?). I guess I have a difficult time imagining that there could be a “Classic Hip Hop” station. Though, in all reality, I guess I have a hard time imagining that they would be significant enough deserve the title of a “Classic Hit.” Especially the “Hit” part.

I suppose it just reflects something deeper about the society in which those types of individuals flourish. In a society that mocks individuality, that pursues conformity in the most obscene and asinine ways, is it any surprise that these individuals jump to the top? People who “sing” about sex, abuse towards women, sex, drugs, sex, violence, sex–these are the people who receive more publicity by the media and more recognition by the general public because of their failing marriages, massive weight gain/loss, drug and alcohol problems and any type of scandal that could possibly be imagined. We have turned into a society that feeds off of the pain and agony of others, that needs someone to fail in the most awe inspiring type of way just so that we are able to forget our own troubles for a moment and feel superior to those we create to be superior to us. For surely, if Brittany can’t keep her marriage together, and she’s a ‘superstar,’ then perhaps my failures aren’t so bad. After all, I’m just a normal person.

We have created a tabloidal media just so that we can ensure ourselves that it could be worse. Instead of looking deep into ourselves and trying to identify the problem, the underlying anxiety that all of us face, we have created a coping mechanism that, while on the surface seems to help, only masks the perpetuating anxiety, allowing it to grow and fester beneath the surface of our consciousnesses. Instead of just masking this by getting drunk or high and bumpin’ n’ grindin’ at the club, we need to make a conscious move away from simply masking our anxiety. It is a well known fact that the best way to get over a fear is to confront it head-on, and that is exactly what we need to do. Stop fetishizing celebrates. Stop the drinking. Stop the hiding. Just live.

Or at least get better taste in music.


~ by sisypheanfeat on 20 September, 2008.

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