Politics, Religion, Spam, Dating, the Purpose of Life – and Music

MUsic is my religion
We have some political musicians, but they’re usually rather lame – with the exception of singer-songwriters like Billy Bragg, or protesters like Woodie Guthrie. For example, Dave Grohl’s interview with President Obama and all of Bono’s bollocks are best ignored. (I otherwise admire Mr Grohl, and the interview did give his Sonic Highways series a grandiose ending that will have pleased the television companies.)

There are also the vehemently left wing, who stick grimly to their socialism once success turns them into plutocrats. But musicians by definition are a well-educated bunch and politics is nothing even remotely as interesting as music.

Religion isn’t that big a topic amongst musicians either – expect for the very large numbers of top class musicians who play every Sunday in churches all over the world. The most successful Christian bands I know, write songs in which the usual love topics can be related either to Jesus, God or the girl next door. They are ambivalent as all good art should be.

This wasn’t always so, especially back when the riches of the Church were the only funding available to composers and orchestras. A few rich princes were also patrons of music, but in those uncertain days and shortened lives, they spent money on art in order to buy posterity for their image, and favour for their souls.

Some religious people are desperate to share their “Good News”. This evangelism, whether deliberate or unthinking, is one of the few things that I really don’t like – the ultimate spam.

Social media gives people a chance to be themselves – ideally as helpful, wise persons worth knowing. If you spam, you will be cast out into the wilderness. Interestingly, some church music fora are particularly expert and helpful with the only clue to their religious side being the sample songs they post to show how they use Ableton to run services; or equipment demos in church naves. These guys really do know who to run a regular live show. Much respect.

And so to dating; how many people would like to meet someone but can’t, especially after a break-up, divorce etc…? The more you want it, the the less chance you give yourself…. Whereas if you get on with what you do and be yourself, you’ll attract eventually the right person for you. Don’t go looking!!

Which is my attitude towards religion. I could not take a God seriously who needed me to tell her how wonderful she is. If I crack on with what I do as best I can, and be the best human I can be (that’s my species folks), then whoever made me is hardly likely to object. And if God and I are to have a relationship, then that’s nothing to do with anybody but me and Her.

My day job is writing and some other research stuff, the result of, in my previous phase of life, having had less time for music. I’m now trying to pull these three things together, to do what it seems I’m best at doing.

Doing your best is in my opinion what human life is all about. Our Gods will look down on us, I hope kindly, and might even enjoy some of what we do!! Rock On…

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