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Re: cultural icons

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  • J. Free
    I ve just picked up on this recent debate over the merits of so-called dinosaur acts, and I find it strange that credit can t be simply given where it is
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 1, 1999
      I've just picked up on this recent debate over the merits of so-called "dinosaur" acts, and I find it strange that credit can't be simply given where it is due. I will admit to some cultural ignorance as afforded by distance, but were not Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Tom Ze, Os Mutantes, and their ilk regarded as criminals in their heyday for challenging the musical status quo? Unless all of their history is a complete fabrication, they were banned, jailed, beaten, and shut down in general for many years before the general public began to shake itself out of a deep slumbering funk in order to recognize and validate these new forms of artistic expression.

      Yes, they may be heroes now, and their music may glut the airwaves, and this may make it difficult for new artists to be heard, but whose fault is that - the artists themselves or the same shaggy audiences who continue to lumber forth like lemmings, waiting until enough of their neighbors approve of something before they can accept anything new and different? Artists generally don't put themselves on the radio, so perhaps the ultimate political statement in their revolution was that they they have won over the masses and in effect, have become the new mainstream. Perhaps, in the same way, the new artists who are struggling to be heard, will have to in turn challenge this new status quo, just as their predecessors did.

      This kind of conflict is not always pretty, just as with the hand-me-down remnants of the punk era, or the so-called "alternative" or "indie" movements, for that matter, but at the very least, it keeps things interesting. The point is, I think it is the responsibility of the artist to make themselves heard. Blaming the forerunners of tradition seems a poor excuse.

      J. Free <<J.Free@...>>
      The New Puritan ReView
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