Firefly Pointer Fiberglass Jacket: "Too much"

Sunday, October 2, 2011

"Too much"


These days most of us can agree that things have become "too much." For example, Facebook.

Facebook started simple and effective but Mark Zuckorberg decided to throw the ""If it aint broke, don't fix it" logic out the window. Now Facebook has what a lot of my friends say "Too much". Too much privacy changes, too much aesthetic changes; confusing something that already worked fine. In fact, because Facebook is "too much" people are migrating towards Google +. This has happened before. It happened with Myspace, which I liked the best out of all the social networking sites I used. It changed when it didn't need to perhaps just to keep up with the competition. Well, that's the same reason Facebook has cited for making it's changes. Ironically, like Myspace, Facebook is digging it's own grave. Things like this happen all the time, especially in pop culture history.

Madonna, she has always changed and evolved...no doubt changing and evolving to stay relevant in popular culture. In popular culture, it is really easy to be over exposed; that would be my major complaint with pop music. It's not just on the radio and on the tv, it is inevitable that you will hear it and it is inevitable you will get annoyed with it. Too much exposure to things, even things we enjoy can make us sour to those things.

For example many people are irritated with Justin Bieber right now. He is everywhere, his image is everywhere, and his music sucks. We live in a time where we are saturated with the media, we can all agree. I was born in the MTV generation, so as far I know...that's the way it's always been. But I do remember a time when there were only previews before a movie when you went to see one in a theater. It was only in my later high school years that they started to add car commercials and repetitive Coca Cola spots. I feel like every year they sneak something new in. And it's all for the sake of advertising.

Although Madonna has changed and evolved through the years, she really isn't "relevant" anymore. I argue both sides of this argument with people, because I think her influence is out there to some degree. If you asked me to compare it to Bowie's, I would say he wins this round. Bowie was the original icon for the gay community. He spanned more than just music genres, but he was and still is the martyr of androgyny. Recently I am starting to get the "too much" feeling with Lady Gaga. I talk about her a lot, in a positive and sometimes ridiculing way. She is everywhere right now, and everyone is a fan of her. Much like Madonna in the 80's, the only difference...the internet. That makes it a lot harder to avoid and a lot easier to see things going on in pop culture. Lady Gaga has become the new "gay icon". Kind of like the saying my Professor told me "I don't know anybody who sells coffee but doesn't drink it." I find it a little funny. I can't disagree with her fighting for gays right to marry, but I really don't see her as being any kind of gay icon.

Not only is her music and image everywhere, and every person I meet seems to be some sort of guilty fan, but she has started moving over into the rock and roll arena. Not really in the musical sense, which I would like to see. She is the Godmother of Elton John's son, she has hung out with Alice Cooper, Stevie Wonder, and just last night she sang on stage with Sting. I'm self ware enough to admit that it is due to jealousy to some degree. But she is still a pop music new comer, and I just can't get behind her. My chief complaint: Let's get real, she copies Bowie way too much. I feel like every image I see of her is almost a direct copy of something Bowie or someone else did. Whenever I hear one of her songs I think "Haven't I heard this song before?" I indeed have, because it sounds just like another song. That's what I can't get behind.

The real kicker is these songs that I heard already that Lady Gaga sounds like came out not all that long ago. 30-25 years ago, and in many cases less than 20. In essence, all these "little Monsters" (mostly high school age) are seeing and hearing what she is doing and they think it is original. That is my problem with Lady Gaga in popular culture.

And it's everywhere.

I don't think it would bother me so much if it wasn't everywhere. We live in the time of too much. Too much ads, too much fatty food, too much radiation, too much synthesized music, too much in our faces and in our minds. Sometimes I feel a sensory overload and absolutely must avoid my computer for reasons of sanity.

That is why I love rock and roll. It's raw and real, and isn't over done. Rock and roll is emotional, and that's why people take it so seriously. Sometimes I feel like nobody feels the same way I do about it. Some people I meet have a very "music is ok" mentality. My response would be "music is my life." I take it very seriously. Much the way an Evangelical Christian would take seriously his faith in God. Often, I am luckily reminded that other people like me exist. There are other people who are so emotionally invested in rock and roll that becomes a religion in itself.

In a time where everything seems so fake, is too big, too much, it makes me extra nostalgic and in love with my rock and roll. Rock and roll, like punk, is a mentality. Rock and roll is authentic, and so am I.

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