So, Ryan Adams...

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by Drew, Feb 14, 2019.

  1. Demiurge

    Demiurge Intrepid Jackass

    Messages:
    4,331
    Likes Received:
    931
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2005
    Location:
    Worcester, MA
    So I got roped-into watching the new remake of A Star is Born yesterday, and this story kind of sat prominently in my mind throughout. A story of an abusive ghoul and their vulnerable protege goes from scandal to heart-warming Oscar-bait depending on how successful the protege ends up in the end, it seems.

    The whole "tormented musician given infinite latitude because he is creative" trope needs to die. Bradley Cooper might have mumbled & stumbled his way to an Oscar for it. It cannot be any more played-out than it is now, can it?
     
    zappatton2 likes this.
  2. narad

    narad Owned a Zune

    Messages:
    8,001
    Likes Received:
    7,160
    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Tokyo
    Well it could be a white/black guy buddy drama about over-coming racism while learning to appreciate a new perspective.
     
    Demiurge likes this.
  3. diagrammatiks

    diagrammatiks SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    2,853
    Likes Received:
    2,576
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Location:
    china
    this is not good music guys.
     
  4. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

    Messages:
    28,873
    Likes Received:
    4,416
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    Location:
    Somerville, MA
    That kind of bothered me about A Star is Born, too - not the abusive stuff (which I saw as more of a side-effect), but the implicit "being an 'authentic' musician is self-destructive" thing, where the character who was supposed to be the foil to the pop success who continued to push her to musical authenticity was the drug and alcohol addict who was destroying his life but tapped into something "authentic" so it was cool.

    I found myself reflecting on this as, after getting home from the movie, I poured myself a bourbon and picked up a guitar for a couple quick minutes of practice before bed, that this is a trope that has probably been very destructive to a lot of musicians over the years, that the drugs and alcohol are part of the process of tapping into something "real." The irony wasn't lost on me.

    Through that filter, I thought Cooper's abusive streak as Gaga's career started to gather steam was fundamentally a product of the fact he was drinking and drugging himself to death, and was lashing out in a drug and alcohol fueled haze, rather than a legitimate calculated attempt to demean her worth. Functionally they're the same, but in root cause they've very different (and this is all fiction of course, but he did seem ridiculously proud of her success when he was sober).

    You're wrong, it's just not metal. That's cool, though, you don't have to like his music. At a minimum, these days it takes a lot less feeling guilty about liking it. :lol:
     
    Demiurge likes this.
  5. Thaeon

    Thaeon Cosmic Question Asker

    Messages:
    1,137
    Likes Received:
    472
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    I'm SO disgusted with that trope. Though I do have to admit that it exists with good reason. How many stories exist of musicians being exactly that trope or something else equally as bad and tortured. I'm not saying I don't have my own mental shit. I'm also not saying I'm artistically anything special. But there is something to it. Would be interesting to know if a mutual cause or if its just correlation.
     
    Demiurge and Drew like this.
  6. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

    Messages:
    6,267
    Likes Received:
    2,586
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    Location:
    Gatineau, Quebec
    I think the older I get, the less the word "authentic" means to me. Whenever I hear the word "authentic" or "real" as a characterizing trait, my brain immediately goes to a sort of "No True Scotsman" kind of place.
     
    Thaeon likes this.
  7. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

    Messages:
    28,873
    Likes Received:
    4,416
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    Location:
    Somerville, MA
    This is actually an interesting and kind of huge question.

    So, for me, I always sort of see it as a "to thyne own self be true" sort of thing (though worth mentioning in this context is that famous speech from Hamlet, often quoted today as sage advice, was in its day an evidently senile old man spouting off the equivalent of motivational posters and Hallmark cards, which is perfectly appropriate here :lol:), where being "authentic," in this context, is making the music YOU believe in and are passionate about, rather than sacrificing something intrinsic within yourself to make music that conforms to other people's expectations. Easy enough, right? Don't sell out, follow your own muse, be authentic.

    Except, because that's clearly going to be a subjective process - only you can really know whether or not you're following your own muse - it sort of follows that there's absolutely zero way for, say, you to tell if I'm "being authentic," or if I'm selling out in ways that just happen to resonate with you. That, it's probably impossible for an outsider to know if I'm being authentic, or if I'm just doing somethign they happen to dig.

    I guess at the end of the day I likely still know if I'm trying to write music to appeal to other people, or if I'm writing the music that resonates most closely with me... but even that can be a bit slippery, like do I think I'm writing music for myself but is it unconsciously being colored by other expectations? Who knows. I guess the only thing you can do is try. It's still useful, to try to tap into something authentic rather than just churn out whatever's hot, but there's no good litmus test that you as an outsider can apply.
     
    TedEH likes this.
  8. Demiurge

    Demiurge Intrepid Jackass

    Messages:
    4,331
    Likes Received:
    931
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2005
    Location:
    Worcester, MA
    I've known several people like that, but fortunately they skewed more along the unreliable/selfish side of things than the violent/destructive side.
     
    Thaeon likes this.
  9. Thaeon

    Thaeon Cosmic Question Asker

    Messages:
    1,137
    Likes Received:
    472
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    I think what people are trying to articulate is owning their agency. I don't think that we have a choice in whether or not we can be 'authentic'. Even when we are allowing ourselves to be stifled, we're still being true to the feelings we're having in that moment, and we're still making a choice.
     
    TedEH likes this.
  10. Thaeon

    Thaeon Cosmic Question Asker

    Messages:
    1,137
    Likes Received:
    472
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    I think that its all selfish. Maybe the trope stems from the thinking that artists are inherently selfish people, rather than acknowledging that they're doing what they have to do for their own sanity.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.