A recent tirade by Kanye West throughout an mtv awards show, as the "Most effective Video" trophy was being presented to Taylor swift, served as a sta...
A recent tirade by Kanye West throughout an mtv awards show, as the “Most effective Video” trophy was being presented to Taylor swift, served as a stark reminder that the age of civility and courteousness could possibly especially well have gone the route of dinosaurs and cavemen.
Well…maybe not “cavemen”, for the reason that it appears that a large number of of today’s generation of celebrities have adopted the mindset that displays of Neanderthal-like rants and tantrums are the norm.
That is not to imply that stars and celebrities of previous generations had been any much more virtuous or angelic than the present crop. Sinatra and the boys from the “Rat Pack” had been notorious hell raisers, Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe, Cagney, Hepburn, Bogart, Rock Hudson and far more all took component in their fair share of scandal.
The distinction being, that earlier generations placed a high significance on keeping the dirt swept under the carpet, and putting on the happiest face achievable for the public.
You could possibly have read about some scandalous celebrity behavior in a tabloid, or caught bits of gossip on the street – but when celebrities walked into the glow of the spotlight, it was all smiles.
Those of us that play guitar, or any instrument, in a band can understand some excellent lessons from the Kanye West incident.
A group of musicians that come together to form a band are pretty significantly like a family. There are apt to be rifts, arguments and disagreements that erupt. Egos can get out of control and tempers flare over seemingly inconsequential problems.
Virtually any person who has taken the stage in a band scenario has experienced this. From the musician that plays at the local VFW, to the well-known clashes of bands like The Beatles, it\’s inevitable that we will all be subject to in-fighting and inappropriate behavior at some point in our musical careers.
The key is to save the bickering for the dressing room, and adopt the habit of putting on a “happy face” whenever walking on stage.
The truth on the matter is, the public especially doesn’t care if we are in a poor mood. They do not give a hoot if issues aren’t going our way, or if a person in the band made a comment to us that we didn’t like. All they want is to be entertained with excellent music.
And if we’re on stage, it\’s our number one responsibility to offer them with just that – the Finest performance feasible.
I have witnessed bands that openly argued on stage, musicians cussing every other out throughout songs, and I’ve even had to break up fist fights between band members. It\’s all inexcusable. Playing music in front of an audience is a privilege, not a correct, and we all have a responsibility to conduct ourselves accordingly.
So the question looms, in light of the Kanye West debacle, is civility with today’s celebrities dead? One look at how the incident was handled by Taylor swift, and Beyonce will give us the answer, and it\’s a resounding “NO”. They both conducted themselves as the “class acts” that they are and proved that civility is alive and well.
The moral for the rest of us is that, no matter how poor issues might seem, no matter how mad we get, or how “wronged” we really feel – we owe it to our audience to check our dirty baggage at the door just before walking on stage, and put on a happy face just before hitting the initial note.
And what of the ranting, adolescent sense of entitlement displayed by Kanye West? It only proves that the world will Normally be inhabited by a handful of world class jerks, with no respect for their fellow human beings.
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Keith Dean is founder of http://www.AdultGuitarLessons.com and a 30 veteran of stage and studio. He toured extensively as a road musician during the US and Europe, was a former lead guitarist for Jason Aldean, and has shared stages with Small Large Town, Wild Rose, Winger, Confederate Railroad and additional. He is a published songwriter, owned and operated a productive music store, and has instructed many students in guitar.
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