Found an oldie but a goodie !
Found an oldie but a goodie !
When I was younger, the idea of leaving my home and traveling my country excited me for so many reasons. I wanted to see how other people lived, what their neighborhoods looked liked, what kind of music everyone was listening to. I wanted to see important historical and architectural landmarks I’d only seen in photos of or in the movies. I felt like I had seen and done everything the Island had to offer to me. I was idealistic and naive, and I knew I needed to fix that.
So I joined a band. I joined a few bands. Now I’ve been across the country a few times. 46 states and counting. Canada AND parts of Mexico. And I’ve seen some shit. Small towns, big towns, major metropolises. I have been a guest many a time in almost complete strangers houses for days at a time. I’ve seen what this country has to offer. I’ve met people from all walks of life - hippies, hipsters, hip-hoppers, country folk, city folk, drug addicts and boozers, men and women of loose AND high moral value. Religious and the non-believers. Service men and women whom we all owe a debt to in some way, shape or form.
I’ve been playing music for almost 12 years, and doing it some-what professionally for the better half of a decade. People love music. They really do. I think. I know I do. I love it so much I decided to buy an instrument to try and make some of my own.You know this because you’re reading this. Undoubtedly because you saw or heard me playing music. And maybe you even liked some of it. And I would say that you have excellent taste.
But what I’ve come to find is that people where I live, don’t seem to care that much anymore. Their taste for music has declined steadily over the past 15-20 years. What they hear everyday, what they think they SHOULD be hearing has been decided by a small group of people making very large financial decisions that govern the kind of music that is released onto the masses. Now, I realize that “taste” is highly subjective, so for reasons of posterity I will remove that variable from my rant here and TRY to keep it as objective as one can.
Only now have I become recently frustrated with the dying music scene on the Island. I spent a lot of time away from it; I never realized how dire of a situation it is. People here really just don’t care what they’re listening to. So long as they’ve heard it before.Somewhere. Something comforting.
Now I try to make my music worthwhile. I really do. I work hard to write songs you and I both will like. And I give my all for every show, because that’s what you should expect. Music is emotive - it should make you FEEL something. Something deep and intense and move you in ways I can’t even articulate into words. That’s what it does for me. Maybe that’s just me though. I can’t speak for everyone. Maybe you feel that way about a new TV, or a computer, or a shiny new car. A toaster perhaps ? Or a whole new wardrobe. What experiences are you willing to get up and leave your house for ? Well, I’ll tell you.
Materialism. Wants and needs. You want it, you need it. You gotta have it. Why ? Because someone told you. Consumerism, really. Someone convinced you that your life would be better. Maybe they even promised you it would. We spend a majority of our life working so we can purchase things. And stuff. And shit. A lot of it is shit. Disposable. Poorly manufactured. In some cases it’s done purposely so that eventually when a product does break down because of it’s shoddy craftsmen-ship or design, you gotta buy NEW shit to replace it!
So let me ask you - when’s the last time a new car got you through a rough break-up ? Is there a particular kitchen appliance you associate with the birth of your first child ? Would you get up and shout out loud and swing your hips or fists in correlation to how elated or angry you were when your Snuggy finally arrived in the mail ? How about your purse or wrist watch ? Feels good to wear it, until the battery dies or a heel snaps off. Then you curse yourself for having spent so much money on something that was disposable.
Undoubtedly, you will feel something when you buy it. So, why not go buy a concert ticket to hear real music ? Why not buy that album your friend told you about? Spend some money on something that could leave a lasting impression on yourself for a lifetime. For a generation even ! Music doesn’t “go bad” or “expire”. In most cases, it gets better the longer it stays with you. Like a finely aged wine, or a scotch. Or cheese. Whichevs.
But that doesn’t happen here where I live. And I wonder why ? Is it because I don’t tell enough people about music ? I’ve got the internet, and I’m connected to all these other people who I know, and some I don’t. In fact, the only reason I know some of you is BECAUSE of the music. Is it because people believe it to be mediocre and undeserving of their precious time and money ? Or is it because you’re scared you might like something different that no one else knows or has ?
Maybe you’re afraid of the way it will make you feel ?
What if I told you you’d like it ? Or that you need it? I could be a sales person and lie to your face that going to a concert or buying an album of my music will make you more attractive, more popular, more enlightened. And sometimes, I have to. But I don’t want to. I don’t want to sell anyone anything. I want the music to do it to you. I want you to decide for yourself if your life will be better off with or without. For some reason I still believe that people are capable of making these kinds of decisions without some advertising executive shoving Doritos, Budweiser, or body sprays down your throat every 8 minutes on TV, or 30 seconds before any Youtube video of whatever shitty disposable pop-artist the parent company of the advertising firm happens to be pimping out that month.
But maybe it’s just me…
I come and visit your life when I get tired of living with mine.
I stay for a while.
Listen to your stories.
Maybe we go out to some fancy bars and restaurants.
Maybe an amusement park, or trip to the beach.
Envelope myself in your music, your art, your culture.
I take pictures.
I give you nothing.
And when it’s time for me to go, I pack up and leave as abruptly as I arrived.
I am a tourist.