It is time for some ‘light’ reading. Firstly, the title may confuse you. I’m not talking about trying to use your cellphone for setting fire to inanimate objects such as paper, trees or cats. No, what I’m referring to bears a much more metaphorical meaning, borne from a real transpiration.
Recently I attended a James Blunt concert in Port Elizabeth. Granted, he is very talented and I personally enjoy his music. During one of his songs though, I think it was “1973”, which is ironic as you will find out later on. Anyway, during the song, a large portion of the crowd whipped out their cellphones and if you didn’t know better, you’d think they were going to hurl them onstage. Alas, that would have probably been better as what they did next disappointed me like little else could.
The crowd took out their cellphones and made sure the screen light was on. Once they were assured of this, they proceeded to jab their phones into the air and wave them above their heads in a slow rhythm, in time with the song. Again, one may not quite understand the meaning of this unless you are familiar with concerts of ‘the old days’ where instead of cellphones being used for this effect, lighters would take the rightful place.
“What a sacrilege” I thought to myself. Since when did electronic devices begin to disrespect the significance of the lighter for this purpose? Traditionally, when a harmonious song is performed live, the crowd shows their appreciation and reverence to the music by flaming up their lighters while emotions burn within their hearts. This new-age notion of the cellphone replacing the lighter is absurd and does just not cut it.
Remember that irony I mentioned? Well, here it is. As far as I’m concerned, real musical talent henceforth real music is anything and everything produced pre-1980. Since then, the ‘electro era’, music has spiralled downwards towards a lacklustre cacophony of untalented, uninhibited cluster of, essentially, white noise. This; all thanks to electronics. This brings us back to my moment during the 1973 (a pre-80’s date) song in the concert when I realised that most* contemporary ‘music’ is soulless and even more meaningless. I believe that this genre is referred to pop (popular) music and it, quite frankly, makes me ill.
* Except for music that does not require electronics
It is no wonder that parents of today, who no doubt listened to pre-80s music, cannot relate to the contemporary crap of today. Back then, songs were written about matters in society that actually meant something, not (and I shudder to say this for the subjects’ lack of substance) imbecile orientated noise based on ‘chicks’ and ‘partying’. It is just horrid. There is no way that any person can appreciate and deem contemporary musical slander even close to the authentic pre-80’s counterpart. Adapting voices by means of computer programmes and pressing ridiculous buttons on a synthesizer should fall under a completely separate category of its own. It’s like comparing cellphones to lighters; the two are just different and should never be considered to bear similarities.
Before this gets carried away, let me end by saying that if you are one of millions who splurge your blessed sense of sound on so-called ‘pop’ music, I ask that you reconsider. When you can appreciate music from before 1980, then only can you understand what real music really is. I urge you to attempt to cognate that which came first, that which is purposeful and that which holds its own in light of the modern-day ‘music’ industry.
Now, put your lighters up.