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Mike S.

February 2001

Greetings!

Well, lookie here, we're already into the month of February, imagine that! Lots of stuff to report about, but I won't be able to report on my little music trip until next month, so just be patient--I promise that I'll have some adventures to tell about.

What Is It THIS Time?!

As much as it pains me to say it, I didn't go through with it--I didn't tell a certain someone that I really liked them like I said that I would do in articles in months past. There are so many variables, so many things that happened, I just felt that if I did it this past month, things would have went all wrong. So I didn't. Plain and simple. I don't want to labor on this too much, but maybe next month I'll have some news. Don't hold your breath, but we'll just see.

Here We Go Again...!

"What is that crazy bastard going to rant about now?" you may be asking yourself. I'm glad that you asked! There are a few things that I'd like to get off of my chest and bounce off of individuals such as yourself.

First, I was talking with a co-worker today. This one girl wrote him a note (which I read) saying how much she loved him (they're *sorta* going out), blah blah blah. All throughout were trite little sayings that people tend to use: "I can't live without you," "I'm nothing without you," etc. After reading it, I was rather angered. Not because of the relationship she has/had with my co-worker, but for the fact that she has no idea at all what love is--it was quite evident from her letter and what she wrote in it. This I was convinced of though: she really believes that she loves him. In reality what it is is her relying emotionally on him 100%. Her self worth is based upon making sure that he notices her and that she feels wanted. She's crushed if she isn't wanted. Now don't get me wrong, we ALL want to feel wanted, but there's also that independence that makes us better people as well, and she's the antithesis of a young, modern, independent young lady. Her whole life revolves around him anymore, and that's not good.

What I guess I'm trying to say is this: *IN GENERAL* people around my age have no idea what love is. Not a clue. They know what lust is. They know what sex is. They know what being obsessed with someone is, but they have no idea how beautiful thing love really can be. They just know what pop music and Hollywood movies have shown them and then they try and create what they've heard or seen. IT DOESN'T WORK THAT WAY!!!!

I love feedback, as you all know, but please, no letters saying, "Well I know what love is, and you're wrong..." or anything of the sort. I really don't want to discuss this with every person that E-Mails me. The one thing I will say though is this: when it happens, you'll know it. There won't be any questions. Period.

MUST SEE!

Keep in mind that I'm on the west coast AND in a small town, so things are a little slow to reach me. That being said, I just got done watching the movie "Billy Elliot" for the second time, and if I can go a third time, I certainly will. This is one of those movies that didn't get enough attention by far.

"Billy Elliot" is about this 11-year-old boy that lives with his dad, brother, and senile grandmother during a coal miner's strike in England (his mother died some time back). Times are rough, but the dad manages to give his son some money every week to go and take boxing lessons. The boxing thing just doesn't seem to work out. One day during these boxing classes, the ballet class has to use the same facility, and it gets his interest, so he tries it out. Needless to say, he likes it.

The big misconception about the movie is that it's a gay film. It really isn't. Billy's family doesn't like the idea of his dancing (with the exception of his grandmother), and the film deals with that struggles that he has to face. It also documents an absolutely touching friendship between Billy and his friend Michael, (which blossoms throughout the entire movie) who just happens to be gay. The gay thing isn't overdone, which shows a lot of artistic discretion and that made me respect the director and the writers that much more. Billy's sexuality isn't explored too heavily in the movie (except a couple of comments made in passing: "Just because I like ballet doesn't mean I'm a poof"), and rightly so--it isn't relevant. Like I said though, even though there are definite gay themes in there, the movie isn't based around that. All in all a five-star movie! The ending could have been really sappy, and I would have been crying through that, but instead, the ending was rather poignant and not overdone; so I cried though that. *lol* The second time I saw it, I think I cried more. I don't want to spoil it for anybody, but there was a (non-sexual) scene between Billy and Michael that had me crying like I never had before during a movie. Wow. Thinking about it now gets me a little misty-eyed. Anyways, before I tell you the whole story, go and see it! And if any of you saw it, let me know what you thought about it. I haven't spoken to one gay person yet who hasn't liked it.

What Is It Supposed To Do?

Music is another language. Music has no concern for race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, and in a lot of cases, technical facility.

That being said, it's rather distressing to see someone like Brittany Spears, the Backstreet Boys, M&M (I just like typing it like that for fun), and all these other bands/people that are processed like cheese. They don't SAY anything with their music! Musically, their stuff is pretty weak. As far as technicality goes, there's no demonstration of any sort of command over their voice that would constitute being paid OBSCENE amounts of money like they are now. My God, have we lost all sense of the word "music"? I'm not looking for virtuosity (although it couldn't hurt), I'm not looking for music that's in the genre that I like, but all I'm looking for in pop culture is something that speaks to me, others like me, and to people in the future. Great music is timeless, and I've always believed that. Sadly, if all you're exposed to is the run-of-the-mill garbage that's produced today, you don't know what good music is. Gracious, listen to what's around you! Ever go to the classical music section of the music store and pick up one of Handel's operettas, or listened to Holst's works? Very powerful, very moving stuff. If something like "The Firebird Suite" doesn't move you, you're not alive. Or what about those swingin' jazz cats? Have you ever been in front of a totally groovin' band during a shout chorus from God? Has listening to someone like the late great Louis Armstrong sing something like "What A Wonderful World" ever just sent cold shivers all up and down your spine?

Music should make one think, and I don't think that today's mainstream music is giving its listening audience enough credit. Audiences are ready for something new--and it's on the horizon. Experiments in music are going on all the time, in night clubs, on the streets, perhaps even in your own neighborhood. The beautiful world of music has much more to offer to you than what mainstream America has to offer you, and it's there for the taking. Expand your horizons and seek out the most perfect piece of music--whether it moves you to tears, whether is fills you with intense joy, or even whether it just plain reaches deep inside you. You owe it to yourself. But you don't have to take my word for it: the best judges of music are those two things on either side of your head. Use them.

Wasn't That A Surprise?

As usual, I ended up not even close to where I wanted to, but that's alright. I love these dynamic papers--they're fun to read (when I read others', that is), and they're equally as fun to write. I hope all of you have a great month, and remember:

"Music is played from the heart--you can even live by it. Always love it. " -- Louis Armstrong -Musician, trumpet player, entertainer, consummate showman, philanthropist, human being.

God Bless,

Mike

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Mike is an 18 year old, semi-closeted individual living with his mom and stepdad. He is interested in music, computers, music, reading, music, writing, writing music, listening to music, composing music, arranging music, and other music related things. Mike enjoys feedback and would like to hear from you, and can be reached via ICQ: #56413145 or by E-Mail: Mike_17@gay.com


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