I was talking with someone the other day about music and art and politics and religion, and where they all meet. We agreed that I have to be real. That’s an easy place to start from. But it leaves out a lot.
The spectrum is something like this: Share everything I believe, share nothing of consequence, or say whatever I think the audience wants to hear at the time.
I have been performing on stage for a long time, but I haven’t had a voice. Now I do. I get to decide where I want to be on the spectrum. My first inclination was to say nothing of consequence. I worried that there was nothing to gain from sharing my beliefs. And I am thoroughly disgusted when some actor or pop star, known for their ability to make believe, suddenly decides that their personal beliefs are instructive to others.
I can’t imagine any information less helpful in my life than knowing what Robert DeNiro thinks about some politician.
So, I don’t want to follow in the footsteps. I don’t want to get attention for something, and then sneak in my beliefs. That seems cheap. But what about Rage Against the Machine? Or Rise Against? They built their reputations around their beliefs. And I don’t feel like they are cheap when they bring them up.
But I do generally disagree with their beliefs. I’m not particularly interested in hearing them. But at least it’s part of what they do. But does that matter?
(Note: I’m talking myself through this now. I’m not trying to tell everyone the right answer for them, or even the right answer for me. I’m just sharing my mental journey.)
Some people might say that I threaten to loose my fans or alienate my audience by sharing my beliefs. The truth of it is, I have nothing to lose in that department. People I love may have a hard time sharing my material if it eventually leads back to a political stance that they disagree with. But that’s really the only concept holding me back now.
So, I think I have to find my footing. How can I be real and give a voice to a large group of people who don’t have a voice in the Cocky Rock genre. I don’t want to start any arguments. And I know that I’m not going to change any minds. My ultimate goal is to remind everyone that we are 90% the same. But I don’t think I can accomplish that by being scared to be real.
So, as I find my footing, and do a lot of soul searching, I will try to be real. Online and onstage.
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