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Monday, 5 September 2016

Question of the Month: Your Music

The question was put to us a month ago - Which kind of music best speaks to you?

For me, that's an easy question to answer. I love the pop/punk merge that happened in the 90s. Elements of the rebellious non-conformity that drove the original punk movement in the 70s, but with the much more polished, palatable sound of mainstream pop. I didn't realise until I considered this question that I can relate to that quite closely. For years, my unacknowledged desire has been to fit in, but on my own terms. To be loved, but as a shining minority, not a dull vanilla conformer. The overarching attitude of bands such as Green Day, Blink 182, The Offspring and NOFX was essentially a big "fuck you" to anyone who tried to disagree with what they stood for. In particular I can name examples from Green Day, who are my favourite of the lot. When they released their first couple of albums, they were underground hits, released on no-name labels, that had a niche following among the kids of that scene. In '94, they were approached by a major label who wanted to take them mainstream, to which they said "Yeah alright." Their original fans felt betrayed at the treacherous idea that they would want to fit in with the mainstream, but like I said, the general attitude with thes bands is "If you don't like it, fuck off." The album they released that year was listed at #194 on Rolling Stone's list of the greatest albums of all time.

It happened again late in the 90s when they released what I once read described as "...possibly the most punk thing of all - a an emotional slow ballad." Good Riddance (Time of Your Life) was another insult to the expectations of the masses with its surprisingly heartfelt emotion. And then it happened again in 2004, when the majority of youth were starting to turn to RnB, pop and EDM. They came out with the politically-charged smash American Idiot, causing Rolling Stone to claim they had "saved rock." That turned out to only be temporary, but the point is that at all times, they did what they wanted. What they felt was right. And they did it in a way that convinced the rest of the world to go along with it.

I'm in love with songs like Prisoner of Society by The Living End, which is full of rage at the generation before them. Killing In the Name by Rage Against the Machine, with its venomous riffs and lyrics. The first two bars of Blink 182's All the Small Things alone hold so much power. It's easily the type of music that speaks to me the most.

This song sums it up pretty well.



This was part of a bloghop called Question of the Month, where we answer a question meant to provoke thought and explore who you are. If you'd like to join us, but your name on the list below and I'll email you when it's time to answer the next one.




31 comments:

  1. I like Green Day even though the lead singer seems to have freakishly short arms. Hopefully I did not say something politically incorrect since I often have foot in mouth disease. This music seems much more original than the hip hop Britney Spears blechh. I am very close to joining in on the fun. It's funny how, when we were teens there was one band or genre we love and never lose. Mine is ABBA and my brother is Jimi Hendrix. I have to say that the classical music is something that I am always inspired by and harken back to. I also love the movie music

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    1. I'm not offended. I certainly didn't notice that for myself, but I'm not offended. ABBA and Hendrix seem like very different artists.

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  2. Surprisingly, I listen to a lot of music my dad loved when I was a child. I disliked the music back then because it was primarily country western in the United States. Now it is nostalgia I guess which makes me enjoy it.

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    1. I was exactly the same with the music my parents listened to. Maybe there's something psychological in that.

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  3. I'm very familiar with those bands. Even saw Green Day in concert during their American Idiot tour.
    My post will go up on Wednesday.

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    1. I missed out on their American Idiot tour, I only got to see them for 21st Century Breakdown.

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  4. I'm a big fan of Green Day! They got my head out of the '60s and '70s. Much better than most of the formulaic crap that's around.

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    1. Actually formulaic seems like quite a good word to use.

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  5. The music you describe was something that bypassed me--or more correctly I essentially ignored it. My kids were listening to some of it at the time, but I didn't find much there that appealed to me. Then again, since I wasn't listening to much of it the music never caught on with me.

    Maybe it's kind of a generational thing. Or maybe I was too busy with other interests.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

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    1. Definitely a generational thing (for the most part).

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  6. It's hard not to like Green Day, even if you don't like the genre, becuase you can respect what they stand for. I actually liked Green Day from the start, but unlike you, I lived in a time and place where black girls weren't supposed to like punk, rock, metal, or anything that didn't relate to R&B and Hip Hop. By college though, it was all good. I got to appreciate all the music I loved without being labeled a rebel.

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    1. Wow, I'm amazed that that's something you experienced. Prejudice can be so weird.

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  7. As a codger, the only song I recognized in your list is "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" -- and I really like that one too!

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    1. Well, at least I got through to you there ;)

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  8. Hey Michael, I have finally taken the plunge and joined your bloghop. I've wanted to do this for quite some time and today was the day. Great question this month. I love music. I'm not familiar with the songs you posted about but I'm going to check them out. I like the Green Day song you posted here. Good stuff. If you read my answer to the question, you won't be surprised that I wasn't familiar with your favs... :)

    Have a great week. Thanks for hosting this fun blog hop!

    Michele at Angels Bark

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    1. They'll have at least a couple of songs you'd recognise. Look up "Good Riddance" and "When I Come Around".

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  9. At different times in my life different types of music have moved me, spoken to me and made me fee so happy in times of sadness

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  10. Somehow, I completely missed your email about this month's question :( I just now found it unopened in my inbox. I was gone at a conference half of that week, so I guess that was why I missed it. I may do like Alex and throw in an answer on Wednesday with my IWSG post, this is a great question!

    I heard Green Day and Blink 182 a lot in high school, and I liked them better than most of the mainstream artists.

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    1. Aw that's a shame, lucky there's still IWSG that you can tack it to.

      Yeah Green Day was a big Soundtrack to high school for me.

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  11. Green Day? Very cool. I don't remember this particular song, but I tend to love a song that doesn't get played to death on the radio myself. Wait. Do people still listen to radios? Hmm.

    Anyway, the message of "here I am, like it or lump it" reminds me a bit of Walt Whitman letting loose his barbaric yawp over the rooftops of the world.

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    1. I love that you compared Green Day to Walt Whitman, I think the lead singer would genuinely enjoy that.

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  12. I love all of these bands. They bring back great memories of high school, Green Day in particular. Good times.

    It's funny you mention original fans being mad at them for scoring a major record label and going mainstream. I've never understood that kind of logic. It's associated mostly with hipsters now, but apparently that was happening even 20 years ago. I just think it takes a really shitty person to say, "Oh, my favorite band is getting popular and has the chance to live out their dreams and tour worldwide and become wealthy for all of their hard work? Well, fuck them! They were better when they were performing in dive bars for spare change and living out of a van!"

    Uh, no they weren't. No one is a better person when they're living out of a damned van.

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    1. Tooooootally agree. How dare they desire to be rich and famous?

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  13. I enjoyed reading how you defined yourself through the kind of music you enjoy. Interesting take on the challenge. It is strange how fans feel bands are inherently evil as soon as they become rich and famous. I've been a little taken aback by this attitude myself.

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    1. Yeah it's weird. I at least would like it if I could say "I liked them before they were cool."

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  14. Green Day has a cool sound. Haven't heard of them before, but I could listen to more of their music.

    I like classical music and its complex chord progressions. It stimulates my mind.

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    1. I'm surprised you haven't heard of Green Day before but not surprised at all that your answer to this question would be classical music.

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  15. Green Day is a good band. I have a couple od the CDs. But I have listened more to the original punk; Sex Pistols and Clash and some Scandinavian bands you probably haven't heard of >:)

    Cold As Heaven

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