Monday, March 20, 2006

Hegel on Music and other thoughts

One thing you've got to love about the era we live in now is the way in which newsmakers can speak for themselves through websites instead of relying on the media to filter their comments. I still think we need "old media" to ask the questions to get information that newsmakers wouldn't be willing to offer on their own, but there is something to be said for giving a charismatic public figure access to a public forum. Unfortunately, the people whose actions have a legitimate effect on our society, such as politicians and business leaders, are a bit behind the times. Other than a few enterprising types such as Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, I can't think of any true movers and shakers who have a blog worth reading. They are still reliant on the old model of letting P.R. firms carefully filter any communique with the public.

Not so for celebs in the realm of entertainment. Today has a hilarious rap posted in which T.O. mocks the "haters" by boasting about the $10 million in guaranteed money he just received from the Cowboys. How would he have gotten this message out in the days of old media? Even funnier are the ramblings from the music industry, where the Sex Pistols recently turned down an invitation to join the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame induction with a vulgar note on their website, complete with spelling and grammar errors and a lack of coherency. One could only wonder how Malcolm McLaren could have used the Internet back in 1977 to further pull off the great Rock n Roll Swindle.

I was also highly amused by a recent rant that Scott Weiland posted on the Velvet Revolver website directed toward Axl Rose. Weiland calls Axl a "fat, Botox-faced, wig-wearin' f---." He concludes the note by saying that Axl is a "frightened little man who once thought he was king, but unfortunately this king without his court is nothing but a memory of the a--hole he once was." It would make sense for Weiland and Axl to clash, just as Kurt Cobain and Axl almost got in a fistfight years ago. They represent what German philosopher G.W.F. Hegel called the "thesis" and the "antithesis." Hegel basically thought that truth came about in the union of opposites. You could say that Axl was the apotheosis of the 80s hair metal genre (thesis) and Cobain represent the 90s grunge movement that ultimately supplanted hair metal as a cultural force (antithesis). Hegel next postulated that the thesis and the antithesis would come together (synthesis) to form a new thesis. You could easily make the case that the rest of Axl's band joining with one time grunge singer Scott Weiland to form Velvet Revolver marks a perfect Hegelian synthesis. If you want to have even more fun you could speculate that the name Velvet Revolver indicates a Hegelian synthesis of two 1960s bands-- the dark and non-mainstream Velvet Underground with the more melodic and commercially viable Revolver-era Beatles. Such a mash up isn't too far from what VR sounds like.

I think the case of Audioslave would be another Hegelian synthesis, with the rap-rock of Rage Against the Machine synthesizing with the grunge of Soundgarden. It'll be interesting to see if K-Fed and Britney will some day form a band that Hegel would be proud of.


Blogger Heidi said...

you live in THE elizbeth town. like the real deal....oh my gosh...i am .... like ...jealous.... like ... yea!

ps. not really

12:32 PM  
Blogger Azor said...

Hey now, you know you'd revoke your own Canadian citizenship in a second just to visit Elizabethtown.

12:52 PM  
Blogger Ryan said...

I'll have to check and see if any of my favoite bands have blogs that would be interesting.

10:58 PM  
Blogger Heidi said...

yeah...i would, wouldn't i? you have me down to a T. who are you again?

9:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

weiland shouldn't be hating on axl. i mean, he stole his band. axl should be pissed at him.
audioslave is a band that never should have existed. i miss rage against the machine...ZACH WHERE ARE YOU

9:16 PM  

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