I love concerts. Dancing in your room in nothing but your undies is fun. Rockin’ out in the car to the new CD you just made/bought with friends is fun. Putting in your iPod and going for a walk is even fun. But there is NOTHING like a live show. Absolutely nothing.
I’ve been to a number of shows; Linkin’ Park, Gym Class Heroes, Tool, Alice in Chains, Atreyu, Nas, No Doubt, Paramore, Boys Like Girls, and the list continues. Last night I saw John Mayer with opening act Train at the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden, NJ and I’m not even sure how to describe it. I had an amazing time with my mother, who I rarely get to spend time with, but that’s besides the point. I always felt that John Mayer was a great artist and really enjoyed his music, but you see something at concerts that you don’t hear on the radio or in your headphones. You see the music, you don’t just hear it. There’s something that comes over the whole crowd that is just overwhelming. You can see the artist in rare form, on stage with bright lights shining down, sweating, rockin’ out on the guitar, singing the heart out. You can just see the look on his face that says “This is me.” And that is exactly how I feel after an amazing concert; that’s how I felt last night. I walked away from the show truly breathless. When Mayer walked off stage and said goodnight, the crowd let out a roar that was deafening, you could just feel the love, the same love, felt by everyone.
(And that applies to Train as well, who were amazing also)
How does one define real? The first definition in the dictionary for reality is “the state or quality of being real”, while the second listed definition is “resemblance to what is real.” Although both focus on the word real both definitions are different. If the dictionary’s definitions of real are so vague, it makes reality vague as well.
There are numerous programs that show on television; news, sports, soap operas, reality, home shopping, music, and the list continues. Reality television is becoming more popular as time goes on. But why? The element on watching someones life as it is really happening, unedited, unscripted, or so we are lead to believe. The news is real. Why isn’t the news attracting as many viewers as reality television? What if the news and reality were rolled into one show? Then, you would have The Wire.
The Wire, written by David Simon, the five season show is reality television, but different from all of the others. It’s not a reality show where the people are real, but much of the show is improvised for ratings, but it’s a reality show that deals with real issues using a cast of people acting. The Wire is definitely not your typical police show either. The police, government, and media corruption are real issues. The drugs, crimes, and poverty are everywhere. The issues in the show are not solved by the end of the episode. One issue links to another, which in turn directly affects something else and it continues throughout the episode. It makes you question things that you might not have otherwise questioned and have more caution for what you believe.
Specifically the lies in the media and how they have a snowball effect- effecting everything because the media is show much of who we are and how we get our information. One lie after another from character Scott Templeton a writer for The Baltimore Sun brought the city of Baltimore on an expensive, dangerous and emotional roller-coaster ride. A small lie which inevitably lead to bigger lies caused people to be killed, careers and lives were ruined, and The Baltimore Sun in the end to win a Pulitzer. It wouldn’t be a show without a twist.
Many people including myself assume that because we see and hear things on the news and read them in newspapers that they are giving us the correct information, many of these stories using the police, the government and people as sources for this information. Not many people question the stories that they learn about, assuming that the information is correct. The Wire shows how corrupt these organizations can be. While The Baltimore Sun might not have been corrupt as a whole, Scott Templeton was not the typical honest journalist that we think of writing our news stories based on the facts. Prior to watching The Wire I never questioned what was on the news or in the newspaper because they are supposed to be factual.
The Wire shows that ethics are important no matter what career you are in. Scott Templeton was a lying journalist, Carcetti was a lying politician, McNulty was a lying police detective, and those are only some of the main characters. All of whom had to sign or be sworn in on some kind of oath stating that they will do their job ethically (in the real world). Something we don’t realize is that this is currently going on where we live, the authorities that we look to provide us with the facts are falsifying them to get themselves ahead. Everyone knows that politicians “lie” to promote their campaign, but nobody would think to question that the people feeding us our information would falsify it to get ahead.
Ultimately The Wire Season five has taught me how to be a good journalist. That everything must be questioned and nothing is always as it appears. Becoming involved and following what goes on in your city, your government, and the media sources that you are getting your information from is important. Make sure that you can prove where your information came from. More importantly, do ethical research and reporting because in the end, your lies will only catch up to you, and people like Marlow Stanfeild will come out on top.
Most people can’t stand being stuck in traffic. Not that I enjoy it, especially when I’m in a rush but I don’t mind it for the simple fact that I have my music. I work a decent distance from my job, about 25 minutes, and every morning no matter how early I leave I get stuck in traffic. Not because theres any REAL reason for traffic like an accident, an old woman taking forever to cross the street, broken light, but because there are people in this world who haven’t discovered that sunglass prevent squinting, which equals better driving or that the thing that your CD holder is strapped onto is actually a sun visor.
This morning, like every other morning, I am sitting in traffic on Victory Boulevard at 7:10a.m, sun shining bright, sipping on my coffee and puffing on my Newport Light, IPod on shuffle. Renegade by Jay-Z and Eminem comes on and I think to myself “Wow, I haven’t heard this in a while” and proceed to turn the volume up (yeah, I rock out at 7a.m) Rapping to myself like the badass rapper that I am, I utter the lines “Do you fools listen to music or do you just skim through it?” … Wait… Rewind. And I listen again. I’ve always known the words to the song but for some reason this really stuck out to me this morning. It’s a heated discussion I’ve had with numerous people.
When hearing a song for the first time it’s usually the beat that grabs your attention since you don’t know the words yet. After putting it on repeat or listening to it 23times a day on the radio eventuallly you learn the words and sing/rap/yell along. But the question is, “Do you fools listen to music, or do you just skim through it?” Do you actually take the time out to REALLY listen to what is being said? The underlying message, what the artist is really trying to say? Yes, some songs are straight to the point, assuming that there is one, but some artists who take the time to really write their music and have it mean something, will usually use lines that may not be obvious to those who are simply “skimming” through the music, not actually listening; analyzing.
For example, Kanye West’s song Through The Wire has a line “On a plane scared that guy look like Emmit Till”. I know when I first heard the song I had no idea who Emmitt Till was, and after asking a handful of people I realized that not many people know who he is. I wanted to know what Kanye was making reference too, so I looked it up.
My point is how many people who claim to “love” music, actually take the time to understand it?
On Writing (thanks Stephen King, you are a genius)
"If you want to be a writer you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot. There’s no way around these two things that I’m aware of, no short cut."
As an aspiring writer I try to read as much as possible. Besides text books for class, newspapers, books, magazines; it is becoming increasingly important to keep up with the internet. As times are changing more blogging sites are popping up quicker than you can register for them and blogging has become the new “craze” mass medium for information, and most likely the quickest. One must know how to write well, but also how to blog well.
So in keeping up with the times so-to-speak, hello tumblr.
Last week in Los Angeles I participated in a live Q&A as part of an ASCAP expo on songwriting. When the topic of Twitter came up, I explained my waning interest in it being part of my daily life. By no means do I think it’s over as a medium altogether, but I do think that the days of “Twitter: The…
As with every mass medium there comes a time when it becomes a hype and the uniqueness of the site is taken away, and is turned into a replica of the other sites you left for the same reasons. I agree with you, 140 words is bullsh..But I am guilty of looking at @replies all day.