Death to Fans

Remember that time Led Zeppelin got a negative fan reaction upon first playing “Stairway to Heaven” in concert, and Jimmy Page cast a satanic hex on them, sacrificing a young virgin live on stage in the hopes that the Lord of Darkness would consume anyone who didn’t support what the band did 100 percent?

Or when Paul McCartney, upon hearing negative fan reaction to the Beatles’ Revolver album, called anyone who didn’t like it a “bloody tosser who lives in mum’s basement and is probably a closet fairy” as he sipped his tea and nibbled on a biscuit laced with LSD.

This also brings to mind John Hughes’ response to people who didn’t like Uncle Buck (yes, these people exist), when he hired actual hitmen to hunt them down and beat them within inches of their life until they posted ads in the newspapers talking about how his movies were the greatest things ever.

And lest we forget the time William Shakespeare famously told a crowd who booed the opening of Hamlet to “kindly fucketh offeth and dieth, thou fouleth Nazi-eths.” But then again, Shakespeare had a massive lisp, so everything he said sounded kind of funny.

(Note: I’m not too sure about all these details, but they probably happened.)

Oh wait, no they didn’t. Because artists from Bach to Rembrandt to Jack Kirby to Prince actually did care about their fans–also known as “the people who pay us money to keep producing our art”–and didn’t piss all over them. Because these people, and many others, for all their quirks, weren’t hate-filled and mentally unstable.

Okay, a lot of them probably were mentally unstable. But they didn’t take it out on their fans! Continue reading “Death to Fans”

Introducing Low Budget Video!

Low Budget

I said I was going to do something, and then I did it. How’s that for delivering?

That’s right! Per my last post about video, I actually recorded something courtesy of Twitter’s Periscope app yesterday morning before work; this is why I stop at times to answer questions people watching the ‘Scope posted. I would have posted it yesterday, but uploading stuff to YouTube wasn’t working quite right.

Oh yeah: I have a YouTube channel now!

So for my first installment of Low Budget Video, I decided to discuss a topic I’ve hit on here before: Politics and Art. Specifically, the ways in which all of that ancillary stuff spouted by creators can, fairly or not, overshadow the art itself in a negative way. This thought was on my mind because I’m going to take my son to see the new Star Wars movie this weekend.

Anyway, if you ever wondered what I really look like or what my voice sounds like, here’s your chance! I hope you enjoyed the video, and if this seems to be a thing you wonderful readers like, I’ll do more in the future.

And I’ll try to keep them under 10 minutes. This one went a bit over because of my introductory preamble.

Follow me on Twitter @DaytimeRenegade and Gab.ai @DaytimeRenegade

My YouTube channel is here.

And check out my Instagram here.

Art as Art: Why It’s Okay to Like Something Despite Its Creator’s Politics

Richard Wagner

As I sit here listening to Richard Wagner‘s “Symphony in C Major,” I can’t help but think about the controversy that surrounds any discussion of Wagner:

Hitler liked him!

Yes, the Reductio ad Hitlerum canard also affects classical music. Is nothing sacred? Does listening to Wagner taint me with the brush of Nazi-ism?

Of course not. That’s just silly. But remember: A whole hell of a lot of people think this way!

That’s the funny thing about art: Like sports, we demand that our musicians, painters, actors, directors, and writers be Good Guys and Gals–otherwise, they won’t be getting our hard-earned dollars, dang it!

I find this argument just as silly.

It Is Possible to Enjoy Art as Art

We don’t need to be slaves to that Romantic myth that the artiste puts a little bit of his soul in everything he does. I mean, the artist does, but at the end of the day our enjoyment of the art is an individual act. We get out of it what we want.

Does this contradict the fact that art is emotional? Not at all. You can feel the emotion in Wagner’s music without becoming an anti-Semite by association. The exact same way you might enjoy Woody Allen or Roman Polanski movies without approving of their pedophilia. Or listening to Led Zeppelin independent of the fact that Jimmy Page kept a fourteen-year-old girl as a sex slave (yeah, that happened).

This has been on my mind since Rawle Nyanzi and I decided to go see the new Ghostbusters movie. Is this movie “anti-men”? I don’t know! I haven’t seen it! Maybe it’s good and not insulting to me, despite the pre-release buzz and the comments made by its writers and stars. Let’s say it is good. Will I care that Paul Feig or Kristin Wiig thinks men suck?

Pop culture is the most influential force out there. Politics is downstream from culture. If you want to understand what’s going on, you have to understand what affects people emotionally. Even if you’re not into politics, you cannot divorce yourself from your environment, because it affects everything.

Remember: If you really want to change the world, go into entertainment. Continue reading “Art as Art: Why It’s Okay to Like Something Despite Its Creator’s Politics”