Thursday, July 10, 2008

Restricted music competition stomps on culture

This was the last entry on my free thought blog.

26th May 2008
Not only irrelevant music but...

…no right to free speech or free expression
What am I talking about then?
Well, the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) of course.
The rules clearly state that the lyrics must not be offensive, must not contain swearing, and must not contain poltiics in any shape or form (in other words no free speech) . Added to that is the rule that limits each performance to a maximum of six people on stage (in other words no free expression) and the rule preventing political manifestations, symbols and uniforms means that the ESC is not only irrelevant from a sociopolitical viewpoint but also from a cultural viewpoint.
And so it is thus reduced to a collection of songs for Europe supervised by a committee that still wants to see Europe (and the rest of the world presumably) through rose tinted glasses, ignoring all the sociopolitical strife and upheaval going on all around us and pretending that everything is all hunky-dorey, peace & love and hugs & kisses and everyone’s happy! All one big happy family from the west coasts of Iceland and Ireland to the Urals and the Caucases! RUBBISH!

And why do I think the music is culturally irrelevant? Well, because all music is based on the culture it is created in, and a large part of any culture is the sociopolitical situation of that culture’s homeland. So for example, if you prevent that which is a huge part of, for example, Irish or Serbian or Israeli culture, in other words a long history of sociopolitical problems, you are in turn preventing a huge part of the cultural make-up of Ireland or Israel or Serbia from being represented in song. Thus making the songs as about as irrelevant as it is possible to make songs.

Whether you like the music or not or whether or not you think the music and the whole show is good or bad is I’m afraid yet another irrelevance.

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