Re: Rock 'n' Roll values
posted at 2/24/2014 4:08 PM EST
David asks "are rock performers really role models and should we expect them to be?"
The answer to that is that we are all "role models" for others , or we should , at least, strive to be. However, once you step into the limelight and become a "celebrity" plenty of people ( mainly younger people) are going to admire you and wish to be like you...in some way. So you "become" a role model by your celebrity , like it or not. Once you reach that height you know that you have power to influence others....a power that should not be taken lightly.
This is why people like Ted Nugent , who are no better ( could even be worse) than the rest of us, get used as tools by others to sell merchandise or get votes. This is why Beyonce does the halftime show at the Superbowl, increase viewers for the advertisers....it's not just a football game anymore , hasn't been since the 80's.
We use the term "selling out" when a Rock star ( or his/her music) becomes more a vehicle for the corporate world and less an entertainment medium.....truly , some artists are sell-outs right from the start. With others it's not their choice.
But, I am straying from the original "values" topic. Rock was , at first, everything your parents hated....it became "respectable", the Rolling Stones said so in their song, because by the time that song came out, we had such wretched creatures as the Dead Boys, The Sex Pistols,Judas Priest and The Ramones ( and worse to come!)...my God ...the Religious Right, the Conservative Right and your momma and dad were horrified....The Stones by that time seemed..."safe"...if you can believe it!
I've always felt that there were many, many Rock figures that "used" the "dark" side of the music to enhance the "image." This is evident in performers like Alice Cooper , David Bowie ( my God, my father wasn't even fond of Bob Seger...don't mention Bowie!!!) , later Johnny Rotten. From what I've gathered Alice Cooper and John Lydon are pretty tame blokes who more or less, played a role , acted a role that they didn't real live off stage.....not true of Jim Morrison or Janis Joplin....sadly.
Do I like the songs of Eric Clapton? well yes.
Do I admire that he became addicted to heroin?....of course not.
Do I admire him for getting off it?....yes.
Do I want to be like Eric Clapton?....not really.
Would I do something if he sang about it?....no, but I'd still listen to the song, if I liked it.
You can admire some qualities of a performer and recognize his/her faults....after all we're all members of this defective species, just some are more "defective" than others.