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A Journal of Sorts
. o O ( of course I should be sleeping ) O o .



"why do you 
have to make
 things so complicated?



~ Avril Lavigne ~



later





I've seen a whole lot of hate out there for pop stars like Britney Spears and Christina Aguilara and the rest... so they wears low cut clothes and follows the Michael Jackson - Madonna mold... Mariah did it... many pop stars use sexuality to sell themselves... most products do, some more subtly than others... did you ever really listen to Madonna's lyrics?... the irony is most of the nay-sayers can't see past the glitter and their own prejudices and assume there's nothing behind the facades... but who's laughing their way to the bank?... and who's sitting home writing bitter emails and negative messages on boards and in groups finding fault with and complaining about other peoples lives? (ummm, instead of living their own?)...

get real people, if you don't have the guts to live your dream or sell out enough to succeed in your chosen field, don't advertise your own inadequacies by trying to focus attention on others who are living their dreams... it just makes you seem shallow and insecure...

and lately Avril Lavigne seems to be the newest mark to take pop pot shots at... she's casual, dresses comfortably, fault her for it, right?... she's seventeen trying to be cool and ptting on some airs at times to get past teenage insecurity, fault her for that too, right?... I wonder if the people who fault the pop stars for jumping on superficial band wangons realize they are doing the same thing themselves... like you really have a reason to hate someone you've never met?... someone just putting themselves out there, doing a job and (don't look now) succeeding pretty well at it... maybe instead of sitting around whining about how lame Avril is or what a whore Britney is and how they should get a life, you should consider getting one yourself... a life, that is... or a successful career in anything...

personally, I give kudos to anyone who can do something they enjoy and get paid for it... and I enjoy pop music as much as most music, some more, some less... the way I see it is Avril is a seventeen year old girl being a seventeen year old girl... I don't expect her to be sophisticated, mature, or worldly... I don't expect her to sing about profound social issues or anything more meaningful than teenage crushes and heartbreaks and the things we all experience growing up... in fact, I don't have expectations abot her or any artist and maybe that's why I can enjoy so many more artists than most people I meet... why you'd narrow your interests and ability to enjoy art to narrow bands and genres and subjects is beyond me, but if it's what makes you happy, go for it...

I don't want to be one of those people
who get off on putting other people down
I don't want my self-esteem to depend upon
seeing someone else as a fool or a clown
I don't want to be a judgmental person
I pride myself on having an open mind
I am not afraid if I don't understand something
and when I am afraid I hope I can still be kind
because for me, it feels better when I'm kind

and I like to enjoy myself
so I try to enjoy everything
it feels so much better to have fun
than to find fault and feel negativity

I like to appreciate life
so I try to appreciate everything
the challenge for me is to find the worth
not to find the faults which may be easy to see

I don't want to be one of those people
who follow fads just to be popular
I don't want to base my self-image
on what other people have to say
I want to rise above petty jealousies and prejudices
I believe everyone has worth and gifts to share

of course cynicism is popular today, as is putting down sappy corny emotional fluff like Disney and Barry Manilow and Michael Bolton and the Beegees type of song... honesty of emotion is sked into the void of pretentious superficiality as it is easier to believe people are lying and using each other than in people geninely caring for each other (it does seem more and more rare each year, what with corrupt and abusive politicians, parents, and religious figures)...

the challenge for me is finding someone who can enjoy or at least appreciate more than one or a few narrow paths... for example, musically I enjoy heavy metal as much as Andrew Lloyd Webber or Marvin Hamlish show music... I enjoy classic rock as much as acid as much as grunge or punk or ska or new wave or new pop or oldies rock and roll or bubble gum... from Alice Cooper and Ozzy Ozborne and Led Zeppelin to Disney and Barry Manilow and Michael Crawford... Mozart, Moody Blues, and Metallica... Madonna, Melissa Etheridge, Marylin Manson, My Dying Bride, and Meatloaf... Bach, Beatles, Black Crows, Bob Dylan, Bon Jovi, Barbara Streisand, Blink 182, Beautiful South, Britney Spears, and Beastie Boys... Handle, Who, Hanson, Hammer, and Hole... Alanis Morissette, A Perfect Circle, Avril Lavigne, Alice in Chains, Andy Williams, After Forever, and Atomic Kitten... Rhachmonanov, Rolling Stones, Rush, REM, Roches, Riteous Brothers, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Radiohead... Neil Young, Nine Inch Nails, No Doubt, and Nirvana... and so many left out, yet would be on my top ten list of all-time favorites... and I enjoy rap, though the hostility and negativity in the lyrics are a turn off as harm is one of the few concepts I do not find worth in, regardless of the any medium... though I can enjoy even harm and madness in fiction (such as Stephen King horror or Dean Koontz mystery or Anne Rice fantasy, but even then I prefer science fiction or mystery without harm and with humor and irony when possible, like Douglas Adams or Richard Bach)...

there's an MTV piece (How To Live Like A Rock Star that gives a good run down on what it's like to be a pop star, good and the challenge (of course done with the usual MTV slants and too-cool-for-school style, bt look past the hype and you might see it's not all wonder and excitement, even if a lot of it is)... pop star:

do it all, work all the time, sing, dance, dress up, make up, video, concerts, interviews, photo shoots, guest spots, merchandising, commercials, acting, serious daily work outs, and live the life 24/7... it's not even even a matter of doing it all well, it's just doing it all, giving all that time, giving up family and social life (other than the entourage), and risking everything for a very slim chance... like buying a lottery ticket...

which reminds me of something I read in one of my favorite (though not updated enough, hint hint, nudge nudge, nod nod, wink wink) journals (it's the 12/11/2002 entry, if you want to read it in it's entirety... definitely recommended highly for any artist) found at the website of one of my favorite artist (far from a typical pop star) when she was asked about the life of a musician, wondering if it was right for her...

"I think it is very hard to have a regular life and be a musician, or rather musician as artist, since perhaps it is easier if you are the cello player in an orchestra, and only have to learn your music, show up and play. An artist's life requires a commitment to something people around us (often the people we love - our families, etc.) can not even see. We have to believe in ourselves more than anyone else ever will. The music business is so unfavorable to artists it is laughable, and we do laugh, because everyone suffers the same pitfalls, and hardships. Everyone. Sooner or later. Financial struggle, loneliness, crappy hotel rooms, less than ideal playing conditions, record companies dropping us or deciding not to put out our records.. While we are putting all of our passion and energy into this life, others are marrying and having children, or working at careers where there is logical advancement and progress. If you do choose this life, you will see people getting out little by little as the years go by, until very few of you are left. "Lifers".. That's what we call the ones who never give up, play the same little bars year and year, all over the country, making a little bit of money, putting out records for a few loyal fans. Of course there is always the possibility that something will happen that will put you over the top, and your career will suddenly be worthy of being called a "career". This does happen to the very few, and of course, we all believe we could be among them. It is the lottery ticket we renew every year, with the new song, the new record deal, the new manager, the new whatever it is that will make a difference." ~ Lori Carson

it's not a job you go to for 40 hours and then go home and do whatever you want to do... and though some live the life of pure luxury and catering to their every whim, the odds of getting to that level are probably close to one in a million, or relatively close to that... the perks at the top are amazing... and so is the loneliness... I mean, who do you trust when you know that with the snap of your fingers you can have literally anything you want? (and everybody else knows this too)...

it's easy to put down a pop star for selling out, for being superficial, for many judgmental reasons... but if yo don't credit them for what they have done to get where they are and for what they have to do to stay there, you're only showing your own sour grapes and maybe should take a good close look at your life, one more time J



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