A really interesting thing happened yesterday. I swallowed my shallow pride.
These last several months have been an easy time to berate, criticize, and tear apart pop stars, the likes of which are Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber etc. For some strange reason, its a time where the music industry is utterly crumbling, but these people are shooting to the top. Very foolish and sometimes naive gentlemen like myself who consider themselves “real” music lovers, are definitely in the front lines with criticisms of the soulless, corporate facade that we see the music industry to be, and even more critical of the artists they champion. I think in part its a criticism of truth and also one of insecurity and frustration.
Last night, I was watching TV, and a “Charlie Rosesque” show called the “Tavis Smiley” show came on, in which the host, Tavis Smiley interviews people of interest, such as musicians, or politicians. That night, he had on Adam Levine, the singer of Maroon 5. I was immediately curious to see what he would say, and also curious to see how he carried himself.
I have to say that I really ate my hat that night. I made the horrible mistake, once again, of judging a book by its cover. He turned out to be an extremely well spoken and honest guy. He said some things that I can’t imagine many pop artists saying. Things like “Its true that our fanbase is mostly female” and “We are a little R&B, a little Rock, but really just mostly a lot of Pop”. He really didn’t try to stand up and justify himself into being something that he might have felt people could take more seriously . He was extremely honest about who he was, and what his band was.
He also had some very true things to say about the industry, which regardless, is always encouraging to hear, especially from someone who makes a living off of it. “The music industry is really just reaping what they’ve sown. It was an industry built on decadence and money, and they ripped off a lot of people for a long time. Its only natural that they would be where they are now”. I wonder what his major label A&R thought about him saying that on TV. He also said something that I believe to be very true: “The best way to continue in this industry, is to work hard on getting better as a musician, honing your songwriting craft to write better songs, and more importantly to create honest music that people will relate to. That is the most important thing, I think, that I’ve discovered working in this industry”.
I couldn’t agree more.
It was honestly really nice to have my perception of someone turned upside down. I’m certainly not a fan of Maroon 5, but I think I’ve garnered some new respect for where they are coming from. Its nice to see someone being honest about who they are.