A long, long time ago, in a country far, far away…
There was Bass. (Pronounced base.) Bass begot the rhythm, and it was good. Fast-forward to disco/electro/hip-hop. No, fast-forward to: not so long ago, and pretty close to here. Q&A by some of my favorite performer/DJ/MC/now-famous-hometown-dudes. It was unusual, to have a Q&A in the middle of a hip hop show. This kid asks: “Who Killed Hip-hop?” MC and beat-boxer, “Carnage,” (ever eloquent, polite, & generous in person,) started asking the audience questions. Questions like:
“Raise your hand- who here has bought a hip-hop CD in the last three months, six moths, year?”
The hand count was less than a dozen. I figured some people were just too scurrd to raise their hands in public, in a bar, at a show. I knew what he was getting at. The next question completed my thinking:
“How many of you have downloaded free music or burned a CD for free in the last three, six, twelve months?”
A lot of people actually raised their hands. (Shame!) I walked away and went back to work. That’s what killed Hip Hop. I get it. Simple economics. Money going into it, no money coming out of it. It is the same complaint many filmmakers/artists of any kind share. To make money you have to sell out to a big corporation who is going to back you, to make your work producible and distributable.
I know this producer/director who was cursing Michael Bay. I told him not to hate on a guy because he’s successful. Said director countered by saying he didn’t hate the success. He hates Bay films because, other than being eye-candy, they are complete, total and utter garbage. I thought that was debatable. I asked him:
“If Michael Bay came to you and said he had 250 million US dollars to produce your dream-film project, would you say no?”
Director pauses. Think on that. You could take it, and start your own company. Companies. Is that selling out, or is that survival?
I don’t want to get into a long discussion about economics. I just want to say:
If you want to have choices in life, you need to economically support alternatives to the mega-multi-national-corporation/department-store choices that monopolize then control the free market.
“Support your local Independent Everything” is the sticker on the old Nic Village Video, before they moved down Franklin ave and became “Videozilla.”
Support your music/film/arts. Support the little guy, the underdog. Support your local independent everything.