Confessions of a Pop Fan


Part Deux

Chad W. Lutz
Last winter, I, Chad Lutz, a 27-year old male from a suburban Midwest town, openly admitted in public forum that I adore the crap out of pop music. Upon publicly declaring said love, a little piece of me attempted to kick me in the balls, or at least feel it out to see if I still had any (I do). After a few inner skirmishes over social impact, historical significance, tonal layering, production value, and overall reputability of songs and bands in question, the two sides eventually made amends. The hippy inside of me initially looked down on my fetish for Britney and Alanis, let alone certain songs by Kanye West, Lorde, Katy Perry, and even :gulps: Miley Cyrus. The Marilyn Manson inside of me wanted to murder everyone, while the world electronic/techno glutton couldn't sit still. We're still looking for him for further questioning.

But, you know what? The hippy, death-metal, techno, gangsta-rap loving sides of me had to tip their caps to the Pop Princess inside of me (Queen Bee if you like), if only out of acknowledgement. Music is music. Yes, there are artists who barely qualify or stand fit to serve the term, let alone be referred to as human beings, but rhythm is rhythm, harmony is harmony, and if it takes me more than ten listens to get what you're trying to do, I'll probably still respect it, but there's no guarantee I'll like it.

An interesting thing dawned on me when I went to see guitar virtuoso Andy McKee at the Kent Stage last November. Listening to Andy play his guitars, especially his signature harp guitar, was understatedly awesome. But what struck me the most was the acceptance of genres McKee displayed. One of his most popular songs is an instrumental cover of Tears for Fears song, "Everybody Wants to Rule the World". He also plays a mean cover of "Africa" by Toto. Both of which were No. 1 singles in the U.S. upon their respective releases. McKee also toured extensively with both Dream Theatre and Prince. How about that for widespread tastes? Andy, by no means, is considered "Pop", although a YouTube sensation in his own right. Yet he still draws from popular influences. My guess is he couldn't help it. The songs just spoke to him, and he figured out a way to blend them with his own unique style. Synergy equals acceptance, no matter how you slice the pizza.

P-O-P, Pop, Popular Music: However you sling it, it sticks with you. And that's the point! Like what you want, say what you want, but listen to Lorde's "Royals" once and I guarantee your mind will be sampling that shit for days. You might even download it. And as for the one known as Miley, she's a train wreck…er Wrecking Ball, and well, yeah, those are always fun to watch. Is she an alien being beamed down from a snake planet bent on sexing up our youths? That's up for debate. I'm almost convinced. But, like her or not, she's sensational. Should music be used as a vehicle for sex? No, probably not. We have enough gender issues to last us the next 3,000 years at this point. But if a song brings out joy in people, save irresponsible imitation of potential snake demons, well, why not let em' have it? There's far too little joy in this world anyhow.

No sympathy for Justin Beiber (at least not from me)
Check out my Confessions Part One!