Monday, August 23, 2010

Let's talk sweet satan

Do artists really do a deal with the devil? Oh, you've heard the legends about the occult and castles. Perhaps, but I suspect like most things its a bit more pedestrian.

From Crowley, you at very least get the idea of "do what you will" or "do your own thing."

The proponents of this idea range from Ozzie Osborn, to Jimmy Page, and  John Phillips of the Mommas and the Poppas. (He also wanted you to "not work as hard as you play" and "go where you want to go; do what you want to do." I bet you never thought of him as a decadent.)

And, on the surface, the it all seems harmless and even appealing. As you get older you realize that not everyone can do whatever they want at just anytime, because each of us have to take responsibility. Obviously, you can't have Sid Vicious doing violent things. But, in a larger context, we've all experienced the impact derivative bankers doing what they wanted to do just to make a little more money.

Crowley, like few others at that time, experimented with drugs, but I think even he'd agree it didn't work out too well. David Crosby said, "It was fine until the bad drugs, like heroin and cocaine, hit." Some did have creative sparks, but the under 25 mind is not fully formed as Peter Green and Syd Barrett can tell you.

Crowley, like Goebbels, enjoyed manipulating the media and the citizens. Colonel Tom Parker was good, and the Beatles' people, especially when combined with their record label (Ever see the hype drummed up for Sinatra or Dean and Jerry? Go look at film and compare it to acts today.) were and, still are, masters (Even "broken up", ever notice how the Beatles coordinate press releases?) as are Madonna, Spears, and Lady Gaga. I think Micheal Jackson manipulated everyone so much it was part of what led to his own destruction. (Just imagine if he'd kept things a bit more normal.) Tweaking the hype machine for sales can be great, but, if the record company is lucky, you'll live up to the hype.

Could a "deal with the devil" simply mean catering to the lowest common denominator or fad instead of being uplifting? "Sex, drugs, and rock'n'roll" sounds good when your 16, but life gets more complicated over time. Soon, you realize the emptiness of this philosophy. Thus, many ubiquitous artists are soon forgotten.

Artists that simply trade on their looks go out of style or, sadly, get old.

What about using sex? Yes, many see sex as a sin and turning it into a seductive forbidden thing is all around us. But, is sex really evil? And, with all of the pornographic content surrounding all of us, does it carry much weight anymore? Even if artist "A" is the hot momma of the moment, will she be able to hold our attention when artist "B" makes a new video. Besides, we're running out of shocking things to do. Let's just shave and pierce everything and pose totally nude on the cover of Rolling Stone fucking the whole staff. Sex appeal without a connection never lasts with partners or the public.

Certainly, some artists have lived hellish and dangerous lives thinking that it would somehow inspire or inform their writing or guitar playing. However, were they really better than when they sobered up? Other than living in such a way is terrible, what wisdom did these artists gain? As Paul Simon once sang, "I've paid all the dues to want to pay." Some point to coincidences saying trades have been made. Only time will tell.

Have you ever considered some of this is simply misdirection? The real truth is learning a craft like music is hard work on many levels like any job. (One reason people want their freaking royalties.) If you can get inside other musicians heads, the critics, and the public, and convince them you have found "the secret" along with a "special" guitar to play it on, it becomes a powerful manipulation. For one thing, your product can be regarded as unique and irreplaceable.

In the end, it is about the song not the manipulations. Oddly, authoritarian Joe "The Bank Robber" Stalin said it best, "Give the people a song they can sing from the heart and one they can dance to and they will be happy."
You have "two roads to choose", so why not pick the one that actually leads somewhere?

Besides, why would you want to let satan have power over you?

Well, I have to go now and put the band back together protect the trademark and make that last bid of bread...oh, I mean get together for the fans and some charity, LOL. An interesting "behind the scenes" movie.

Mind Control Rev. 4

A while back, I had a feature on hypno bimbos. But, I'd like to take a more series slant on this topic by discussing other aspects of manipulation.

Years ago, Jeff and I would sit in study hall and examine print advertising for hidden sexual signals. At the time, the images hidden were pretty subtle and usually centered on sex. The idea being if you drank this liquor you'd get more sex. The technique of associating sex with a product is a proven technique to promote sales.

These days, things don't have to be suggested or hidden, because they are in the open.

Also, it was pretty evident to us that one problem the band Courier was going to was being different. Not a lot of "sex, drugs, and rock'n'roll" assertions or leftist manifestos.

I pointed out in a college class the "only band that matters", the Clash, was on CBS (now Sony) Records and played Fender guitars owned by, at that time, by CBS. So, exactly how revolutionary were the Clash, LOL? In deed, we thought much of it was posturing and, along with light shows, often an intended distraction away from the music. As Tony and I discussed many times, we didn't need any light shows, mother ships, and costumes.

Looking back, I'm a bit nostalgic for fun 70's shows, but it was also a simpler and more amusing time. Now, there seems to be a coordinated effort to package both the stars and the music in an artificial and provocative way. I think companies want to have world wide standard consumer tastes (and laws) to to increase their profits. Some wonder if all the young people are sexed up and stoned if they will be distracted from other things like their loss in their standard of living. I'm also quite concerned an effort is being made to mainstream pedophilia by sexualizing young entertainers and looking the other way on other abuses.

I heard a rumor years ago about an actress who wouldn't "come out of her role" while making a movie and that she might have been hypnotised to be that person during the length of filming. I can't say if that is true, but I've heard more rumors, heard plausible admissions, and seen clips that indicate at least a few of the music stars are playing with hypnosis to allow them project a certain persona on stage, to "sex up" fans, and encourage record sales.

Some of the links below think this part of a world wide Illuminati conspiracy to distract and/or manipulate all of us or promote devil worship. (Most definitely a concern of Mike's mother back in the 70's!) I think today's culture could be as simple as seeking and satisfying the world wide lowest common denominator and/or please record executives and critics.

It was odd that it was on a political site commenting on "slut culture", but one reader opined that women, with the help of the media, women were gaining control over men and this could weaken the whole culture. He wondered if it was a conspiracy.

Again, it could be women are just better at exploring and asking for what they want. Eloise Sutton would argue that it is natural for men to want to be lead by women and this is the way of the future. However, it is a question worth asking the question.

I think we all need to respect each other.

Watch as if Britney is trying to engage her own hypnotic trigger: The Mind Control Channel

In the end, everything from video editing to hypnosis are tools. What makes them evil is how you use them.

Just make sure your kid knows what she's watching or listening to and makes her own intelligent long term choices.