Popular Music and Social Change in the Present
Music has always had a big influence upon life, life style or concept of certain individuals or large groups. Even though initially music was considered just a tool for entertainment, and was used just for its simple and relaxing vocal pleasure, nowadays music is considered one of the best ways for self-expression and a good weapon for mass control. If in ancient times the term music was basically limited by playing a harp, today music is a complex phenomenon, which involves many processes and combination of various instruments and voices.
Musical industry of these days influences almost every part of our social life, starting with clothing style and finishing with the way we talk. If we put all these things together, they will lead to a certain conception formed, based on our musical interests. Actually, music could be considered as a path to personal development.
By using today’s music as a channel, which concludes in expressing our opinion freely and, much more, plastically, we take part in certain manifestations against any rules, laws, social events, political events and so on.
We can also observe that most of the songs, which are meant to be the signature of certain social manifestations, are usually perceived by public persons with disgrace or rejection. This fact gives them a big boost and helps them to spread faster among the listeners, thanks to their concept of “forbidden fruit”.
Eminem’s “White America” can be a relevant example for social issue illustrated and promoted through music. “White America” refers to contradictions and inconsistencies of American social structure by revealing a critical flaw among American society regarding values of the country, which, in his opinion, are considered a playground for capitalists both by immigrants and by Native Americans.
We can observe here some of the theories I’ve mentioned above, like creating the mass movement, “I never would've dreamed in a million years I'd see, so many *** people who feel like me who share the same views and the same exact beliefs, it's like a *** army marchin' in back of me”, or the way of spreading the song is much faster, thanks to rejection of it by officials, “So many lives I touch, so much anger aimed in no particular direction just sprays and sprays and straight through your radio waves it plays and plays, till it stays stuck.”
Most of the times these songs remain in the status of source for inspirational quotes or guidance to the personal opinion and nothing more. They have never had full political or social impact, which is in the major change. It is just a way for people to express themselves and live their emotions or frustrations towards social issues.
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