David Bowie, and why music no longer influences culture

The problem when old rockers die, and the last two that hit me the hardest were Bowie and Lou Reed,  is that it brings up a ton of feelings in someone, say 57 years old.  Here’s the thing:  there are hundreds, nay thousands of bar acts that count as quality even rebellious rock and roll out there right now, but NONE will have the impact of Bowie or Reed, and NONE who question authority or promulgate an alternative lifestyle hit with the IMPACT on our culture the music once had.

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This has occurred, as all glorious creative times (1950 to 1980, give or take) yield to the new dark age that came upon us in 1980, or just before, and the squelching of truly alarming and monumental creativity has slowly but surely gotten worse.  As electronics, propaganda via ALL MEDIA, and “conservative values” whitewash all fields of a cultural realm (maybe not classical music…)  we are left living in the past (Jedthro Tull) and yearn for more Michael Moores or at least more Ernest Hemingways, and if their contemporary equivalents are out there (where, or who is the NEXT Kurt Vonnegut even?) there’s a good chance they’ve been left unpublished, unheard, unseen due to things like Sony buying Columbia records.  Conservative Japanese guys took the label that brought us Dylan, Springsteen, Simon and Garfunkel and a LOT of other acts that questioned authority and BAM squelched any new ones from hitting it being (by not being signed).

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Throw in a pinch of MTV and a heavy dose of an ass-lick or two (see American Idol or even the Voice) and again,music no longer has the influence to help end a war(Vietnam ended due to an entire generation being inspired by countless anti-war  protest songs).

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Now that Billy Bragg has slowed his US touring schedule and bands like Rage Against the Machine are bundled and tied, name me who is going to replace the cultural icons known as the Beatles, Bob Dylan, Neil Young or a long string of others.

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Here I can go to Cat’s Cradle and 25 other venues to catch a huge sampling of the up and coming bands. Probably 20% have the chops and even the philosophy to challenge my theory that the days of a culture influenced by creative people has died. But can you name me one of these bands? Have you seen them live?  Did you download their stuff?

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Worse yet, other than Kathy Acker and few others, which writers are busting full blast against the wars? OK Chris Hedges (the Pulitzer Prize winner fired from the New York Times) has it going on at http://www.truthout.com. Journalists who persist in investigative reporting are often fired.

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Hell, the movies and tv are a lost cause, and basically (look at all the cop shows on CBS alone!) feed such malicious propaganda (lies) that it makes me want to puke. TV? Who has time for that shit. And I say that in the face of a TON of new great shows…still it doesn’t outweigh the pro war, pro “tough on crime” poop. We’re being transferred into a country where the police are militarized, meaning someone somewhere believes more direct attacks (um police killing unarmed people is a problem that equals the racism behind it) on suspects is A-OK.

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Sprinkle in the icing: The Patriot Act ended Habeas Corpus, the legal belief that people MUST be told WHY they are being arrested, at the time of arrest. This has been in western law since 1215. Yes 1215, when King John was forced to sign the Magna Carta. Before I go off hard on how impossible it is to defend yourself if the cops or anyone else doesn’t tell you why you’re being arrested… wow King George the Bush got this crap passed, and the Supreme Court didn’t bat an eyelash (though it’s extremely unconstitutional) and the Constitutional expert,Barack Obama,also never once brought up overturning this foul law and Patriot Act 2, another insult. Had their been an effective watchdog ANYWHERE, this stuff might not have happened. Rise up young voices; or be squelched forever.

 

To Be Human

is to fall in love over and over,
to never give up on any of them,
to cry for the inhumanity, and try to
overcome all that surrounds us by creating
a closeness with those in proximity, both
geographical and philosophical. It is to
carry those loves in our heart, flooding our
minds no matter how gone they are. And
to put others’ needs first, understand their
flaws, work on our own so we can be
better helpers. It is to take it all in and
follow our dreams no matter how preposterous;
to pull apart another brown paper bag and
to write it all out, no matter how choppy.
So take my hand and make it all better
before I repeat the painful parts until
I can no longer act. To struggle past
obstructions and obligations, self-imposed and
expected; to wallow in joy, build strength and
change what we can for the better. To give.

 

 

 

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Liebster Award: a conversation starter and major ego boost?

I was nominated for a Liebster…again!  Wow this is so amazing.

Drop to the bottom of this blog to see if you were nominated by me.

erospea.wordpress.com  aka Spaginazioni Poetiche aka Dora

is the beautiful woman who nominated me.

The Liebster logo looks like this:

untitled

her questions to me are these:

My questions to nominees (plus Doug’s answers):

  1. What is your view on ‘”intercultural”?

If everyone were intercultural and studied more about each other’s cultures, the world would have a chance of being more peaceful IF, and it’s giant IF, those in control at the top actually gave a hoot about how those regular folks feel. Sadly, there is always an excuse for war, at least in the minds of those representing war profits in their jobs as professional elected officials.  Thus in many governments, but most importantly the big powerful ones (See USA, China, Russia, Japan, and Saudi Arabia first) those making decisions are fully owned subsidiaries of big corporate business.  Democracy cannot, or has not, been able to change this.

2) If I say “gestural language”?

Then I think body language, and at the precise moment someone else is falling in love with you they will say it with their body (their eyes, reaching a hand toward you, etc.) first, mouth and words second.  OK maybe even mouth before words if the attraction is strong enough.  Gestural language is more than ballet or giving someone the finger then, by a long shot.  You can really commune with wild animals if both you and the critter believe in gestures.
3)  Your own reflection on the “nomadism”

I have lived in 16 cities since I was 16 years old.  All of my own volition except two.  Traveling and WORKING in other cultures is a great way to live a full life.  I want to know how Ms. or mister “Jo/Joe on the street” sees the world, what influences them, and why.  Tourist, no.  Live there for a year+, yes.
4) Tell me something about your culture of belonging

My culture is a violent, yet caring, warmongering, yet peace donating, hate yet love kinda place.  Some of the great benefactors of the world came from the USA, after they made money by underpaying workers and raping the environment.  Such potential, often wasted on spending zillions on foreign wars.
5) What is your thought on “religion”?

I think spirituality is worth seeking out and getting better at.  it’s nice to try to commune with “the Creator,” but most religions falter when fundamentalists take over.  Hence, “which is worse, a fundamentalist Christian or a fundamentalist Muslim?”  Answer:  they are equally despicable, and are leading their legions down the path to continual war…not a path found in the books of either religion.  Dang war hounds.


6) If I tell you “childhood”?

Childhood is to be supported and encouraged throughout everyone’s lives.  Especially the lives of children.  Education is important, but so is walking around and learning things from nature on your own.  It’s hard to be functioning at a high level if your parents did all the chores for you so you could study or practice music ONLY.  If we allow our children some time to learn about how things work THEMSELVES, they will be able to learn anything they put their minds too.  Keep them away from electronics and out in the field.


7) Do you have a dream?

My dream is that one day my art or music actually is recognized by someone other than myself.  To that extent, even when I was playing music in bar bands, there have ALWAYS been people who supported my creativity.  That’s the miracle you have to believe in to keep going.  You won’t always get in the New Yorker or the Whitney Biennale, but if someone ever asks for a copy of the poem you just read, or buys or accepts as a gift your art, or cheers for the song you just played, dance you just danced, speech you delivered with panache…then soak it in and keep it rolling.  Teaching is like a continual boost of your ideas, if in the right school.  My dream is to sit at a simple meal or tea and talk to people I agree with: learn something from those I disagree with.


8) What role do you think the “Art” can play in society in relation to the your local context and in a broader view?

Art, like anything, is in the eye of the beholder.  The world has thousands of protests artists, musicians, poets, novelists, but it depends who sees it, hears it, takes it in and is influenced by it.  In some cultures art is quite important, in others people make art almost in a vacuum.  In the end, the universe takes care of artists…I don’t know how, but it works.  As a society, any given culture would be wise to listen to its artists, to support them, as without creativity, many become a burden on society.  is it better to support an artists who only paints or sculpts or dances, and is dirt poor because they spend their whole lives with their craft, refusing to wait on tables?  or is it better to watch someone become dejected because THEY ARE NOT FOLLOWING THEIR DREAMS, and then commit a crime, or do harm to themselves?  Easy answer here:  support who you can in their dreams because that puts you on the path of realizing your own.


9) What is your idea about “sexuality”?

I think sex is great.  Those who deny it are missing out on God’s gift.  The Native Americans who walked my space in upstate New York years ago, were naturalists in their spirituality.  To them, at least as far as I know, making love was the highest homage to the Creator.  Easy to understand:  it’s because making love (at least the traditional forms of sex) meant that you were joining the Creator in the miracle of life (or at least a chance of making a new life) and thus, if you love, and love your life, and love your mate’s life, producing a child is a way of spreading the love.  The Creator surely smiles on love making.  If you and your mate can’t spread the love via making a baby, you ARE however spreading the love amongst yourselves, and helping your mate to be at peace in the world, and helping society by being in love and showing others how good your love is.  Thus, sexuality, when coupled with love, is just about the best thing you can do in private that helps the public good.  If lucky, you find a partner who loves sex as much and as often as you do.


10) There is a place where you love to go when you want to feel peace and well-being?

Outside.  In the Woods.  I used to paint outside, I still write outside.  I can also be in pure bliss at my sons’s baseball game, or being a part of a crowd at a rock concert.Specifically, Canandaigua, New York, the lake, the hills, the creeks. It’s usually not where I go, but with whom I go.

Doug & Jim

And here are my nominees.  If you don’t want to play along, that’s fine.

soulspeak2013.wordpress.com

poetella.wordpress.com

toastandteatogether.wordpress.com

cristianmihai.wordpress.com

meandthe30dayproject.wordpress.com

nikkiskies.wordpress.com

lijiun.wordpress.com

patcegan.wordpress.com

thoughtcatalog.wordpress.com

momentarylapseofsanity.wordpress.com

AND YOUR QUESTIONS

  1. Can better communication save the world?
  2. Are all cultures equal, just different?  Or are some cultures stronger/better/more reasonable than others, and why?
  3. Name a philosophy/philosopher you agree with and why
  4. Don’t think long:  What is your favorite movie?
  5. If you could give one 30 minute speech that would create universal harmony among humans, what would the title be?  Or, write us the whole speech.
  6. Did you ever fall in love at first sight?  If so, explain, if not, what are the parameters that need to fall into place in order for you to fall in love?
  7. Your favorite flavor of ice cream.
  8. The teacher you remember most from grades 1-8, and why
  9. What do you want your children or your friends to remember most about you?
  10. Is it possible to rise above expectations, both cultural and familial, and make a unique life that is a positive light? If you’ve done that or are in the process, let us know how.