Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Sex Sells

Is it just me or has anyone else noticed a seemingly reoccurring theme in the music and entertainment industry? It might just be me, but it seems like all music nowadays, no matter what genre, is either about sex/love, drugs, making money, or teenage angst. Those seem to be the only themes in songs that are played on major radio stations. Some genres of music seem to be composed entirely of nothing but modern-day serenade tunes. Even though the beat and tone of the music might be really nice, the words are just not relatable to someone like me. It gets old. It gets me frustrated looking for good music on the radio and wondering if life to the world is nothing more than a huge mating ritual.

I’m an independent-minded young person. A lot of America is made up of independent-minded young people who are also very intelligent. Music is supposed to be something you can relate to. The type of music I can relate to is music about dreaming, about setting goals, about overcoming insurmountable obstacles, and about being strong and making a change. The “rally to the cause” music attracts me in many ways…but the only kind of music I hear like that on the major stations is “Spiritual.” I’m a fan of Ani Defranco and Janet Jackson, but we don’t hear a lot of them on the radio anymore unless they release a hit about shaking some part of the human anatomy. I like to hear music about the institution. I like to hear music that talks about the real world in bigger terms, bigger than “you and me baby.” I like music with something to say.

But it seems like all ANY music on KIISFM or KGGI or KROQ has to say is “I love you”/“I want to fuck you,” “I want to kill you,” “I want to smoke some weed,” “I’m richer than you,” “I want to kill my father for never being there.” I mean the melody is very attractive and makes me want to listen to the song and maybe even like it, but when I actually listen to the words of the song, it’s just not the same. It’s actually very annoying at times. Like for instance, I like the Goo Goo Dolls, but I have recently realized that every single one of their songs is somehow about a relationship and relationship issues. IT SUCKS!

Sometimes I will even see a group like Dashboard Confessionals compose a very nice, relatable song that can really be applied to anything the listener wants, but when they make a music video on it, guess what it’s about—a girl. I mean c’mon, there’s gotta be more to life!

I have to admit, I’m a fan of Linkin Park. I love every single song on every single one of their albums, I can relate to all of their music so perfectly. I did point out that I like music I can relate to, but why is Linkin Park’s music so relatable and enjoyable to me? It’s because I’m an angstful teenager and they write angstful teenage music. They write ONLY angstful teen music, falling under the “I hate my father” category.

The song “Soul Meets Body” by Deathcab for Cutie or artists like Keane and Jet, the type of Alternative Ballad Rock music about struggles of identity and finding your place in the world, that’s the type of music I want to hear more of, but it seems like the only people who sing songs like that are either from other countries or one-hit wonders. Most of the artists are huge in countries like the UK and the European Union, could this just be an American thing? Another one of those “oh those dumb arrogant American’s” things?

Well actually, it might just be. My older sister is in the film industry. Her job is coming up with ideas for shows and getting networks to buy them so she can produce them. After 10 years in the industry, her claim to fame is hardly “Survivor.” “Its like you think that you’re going to go in with all these great new ideas that haven’t been done before and revolutionize the industry,” says she, “but the truth is that no one will be willing to invest in an idea that hasn’t been proven reliable in the past and has a guaranteed high selling rate. Networks just don’t want to take chances, they’ll stick with something that’s safe and always worked and be boring than go out on a limb.”

Ahhh, so it’s not actually that sex is the only thing the world cares about…it’s just the only thing that is a safe and reliable seller every time. I mean, when VHS and VCD tapes were released, VCD was a far superior model to VHS, but the only reason VHS became popular in America was because all of the porn movies were shot in VHS. Reading even further into it, 10% of high school students in this country actually graduate, and only 10% of those go onto college, where only 10% will earn a degree. It’s a failure on the part of both sides that the majority of the country is completely stupid…I mean uneducated, and so maybe their lives really are one big mating ritual, and since they are the most prevalent demographic, what they want is what we all get.

So there actually is more to life than what the media and radio networks portray, it’s just that the opinion guaranteed to rack in the most revenue is the “Sex Sells” opinion, which the networks don’t seem to realize has a dramatic effect on society. It’s a vicious circle. We tell the media what we want to see, the media plays it, and it influences what we want to see in the future. I’m not hyper religious or anything, but I think it’s leading to a decline in our country’s morals. Studies have shown that a 25% increase from 20 years ago of Americans say they have no close friends or companions with which to share personal matters with. America is getting lonelier, Depression is on the rise, the Divorce rate is up, less people are experiencing friendship and true companionship…mainly I think because human interaction has become about sex, at least that’s the message that the media is hard lining into our culture.

I’m just fed up, I need to hear more independent music, and I shouldn’t have to pay a whole bunch for hi-def radio to pick up pirate radio stations for it.


Blogger Shelly said...

I think you have a great point of view. I love comming across something that is on the other side of the looking-glass. I haven't commented much, but I've been reading for a little while :)

7:36 PM  
Blogger Jonh Neo said...

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4:54 AM  
Blogger weapon said...


Sing about love, sing about lust
so they will caaare....
it's the same difference
-dredg, "catch without arms"

2:27 AM  

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