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Friday, April 21, 2006


Again, a comment found on AVC....

"i thought i was going to dig neil's music until the end. i guess i was wrong. i can understand hating war and all of that. personally, i support the war and i think it is the right thing to do.

but knocking bush even though he's done such a great job defending the USA really put neil in the same tub of shit with the dixie chicks and barbara streisand.

joining the chorus of jerks who are willing to risk stunting the optimism of our soldiers and citizens is more than i can stomach.

encouraging combative terrorists to keep on keepin' on because the american political scene is so screwed up by all of the dumb assed comments of michael moore and al gore.

way to go neil. you frikkin ASSHOLE.

i'm trashing all of your crap and i'll never spend another dime on your sorry art again. thanks a lot for 28 years of nothing!"

I wasn't aware of the great job President Bush had done defending anyone from anything. The de-indoctrination of America will take some time I'm afraid.

This is more of where my heads at (also from a comment on A VC "Some Neil Young Hatin' On This Blog" from Steve):

"...sigh. I know, its a done deal that we take our celebrities and pop stars seriously in our culture. but is public opinion on things like war and peace and religious freedom versus jihad really going to be dictated by electric guitar and ipod rather than scholarship and focus? are we not at all worried that, yes, even a celebrity as passionate and intelligent as neil young, is essentially the modern equivelent of marie antionette, slinging caustic sludge that sounds deep but actually signifies nothing -- and risks creating utter alienation in the masses?"

As for the comment you posted, I have to go with your earlier thought, If you didn't expect this position from Neil, you haven't ever really listened to Neil.

I love Neil Young, but like most protest songs, and protests period, in this day and age they have little to no effect on anything. Maybe I'm wrong and G&R's "Civil War" is ready to storm up the charts as soon as a worthy group can coop it.
I disagree about the effectiveness of protest songs in this day and age - certainly, as a genre, this type of thing doesn't sell like it used to, but it is valid, and from where I stand, necessary - who else is going to dispel the myths of the Right? This is what art is supposede to do.
People, it's music.

Neil Young will not hurt the troops' efforts. He will not create "utter alienation in the masses". He hates Bush, so do some soldiers. People don't change their views on war based on a single song.

But when was public opinion ever dictated by "scholarship and focus"? Most people have a vague notion of why they do or don't support Bush and/or the war, and it isn't because they've spent any time in a think tank. Writing on your blog is not "scholarship and focus". Reading someone's else blog is not "scholarship or focus". We are not pundits, although some of us like to think we are.

These are emotional issues, and they need musicians, painters, etc. to reflect them back unto the people. That's their job.

That's what art is.

To dismiss outright the importance of a protest song because it has "little or no effect on anything" is to forget just how powerful art can be on a one to one basis. Who cares even if it has "no effect"? These blogs have absolutely no effect on anything in the world, whatsoever, and yet how much time we spend prattling on like we're on CNN? What's going to have a bigger effect - Neil's song and all of the talk it's generated, or these comments?

Neil Young can go whatever the fuck he wants, he's Neil Young.

And the electric guitar is, indeed, a powerful tool for social change. If you don't believe that, you're WAY out of touch.
Relax, I don't think anybody actually believes that Neil Young is gong to hurt the troops effort even the ding-a-ling who wrote the comment.

I also absolutely agree that artists should reflect the emotions of the times and issues in their work. That's a good point. I appreciate and enjoy such work, including Neil's. Art certainly records emotions and reflects issues of the times, but does change peoples minds? I don't know.

I'd say writing and commenting on a blog certainly constitutes the focus part of the equation, and reading blogs and other sources fit the bill for the other.

Aren't I the one that usally get this worked up? Relax and have a drink, we're just talking here.
Ken - are you insinuating that somebody lives under a bridge?
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