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Sunday, July 10, 2011

You Do It For You

"To dare is to lose one's footing momentarily. To not dare is to lose oneself." -Soren Kierkegaard

This, this right here, all of this, you do it for you. You do not do it for "them." I was just telling one of my friends this. He decided to quit music. Out of frustration. Out of lack of . . . breakthrough.

It's hard. It's been said before; I will say it again: it is hard to do this. It's hard to do anything, but it's hard to do something so personal, put it out there, and be forever judged for it. Even if it's not ideal to you. But especially when it is. Like standing naked in the middle of Times Square asking to be rated for a living. In art, it's all a bit like talking into the ocean. Or standing waiting to be egged.

To create can be like a death.

But good, bad, or ugly, you put what you have out.

Saturday, July 09, 2011


You know that song "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp"? Well, it's hard out here for anyone. I try to stay thematic and impersonal, but I'm imploding. Constantly. Regardless of what may seem to be.

It is hard. It is hard to stay focused in a vacuum. Encouraged in a desert. With the loom of bankruptcy around you. Human, artistic, societal, financial--pick your pleasure. With everyone hedging their bets, offering little support, giving you no outlet, being political. Or just plain unmoved or uninterested. Even your own friends, acquaintances, collaborators. It's like having the oxygen cut off on your breathing tank.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Conquest Without Contribution

"Great ambition and conquest without contribution are without significance.  What will your contribution be?  How will history remember you?"

*The Emperor's Club* was on this weekend and put this quote on echo in my head. Rarely do I see a film so explicitly state its premise . . and so early out of the gate. But it's a great line. In a pleasant enough movie. And these words are an iteration of my own "If you have nothing to say, you have no business making art." This is essentially my lament of the death of story.

When One Inspired Moment Catches Your Attention

Sometimes you watch a movie and wonder:  how did this come to be and why?  Watching *Burlesque,* I had that feeling.

The best parts of it are like a sumptuous extended music video and a fashion show mashed together.  That appeals on a certain level--spotty lip-synching and all--but the rest just kills any graces earned.  The story trickles along seemingly as an excuse to string together a lot of high production-value numbers and lovely costuming, the first protagonist "revelation" being particularly strained:  we can only suspend disbelief so much.
A pittance, a number, guffaws, and then * BANG *, one jaw-dropping moment that opened my eyes:  this magnificent pearl outfit, so incredible that all I could do was gasp.