Friday, September 25, 2009

Bearing Witness

Last night was fun- I got to go see David Bazan play a show Live, in-store at Easy Street Records. I just gotta say, I'm so GRATEFUL that I grew up in the ATX and went to McCallum H.S. Growing up in the Live Music Capitol of the world and going to the Fine Arts Academy in the AISD really taught me a LOT about appreciating music and theater and all the other arts that are out there. I just love being able to have a connection to music and how it speaks and having the ability to connect with others through music. One of my FAVORITE things about going to live shows is meeting cool new friends who share my love for music! Another bonus is seeing other people in the crowd respond to the music . . . seeing them bob their heads, shake their hips, throw up their rock fist and all that other fun stuff. :D

Getting to see David Bazan was really cool too. For those who don't know, David Bazan used to head up a band called Pedro The Lion.
Following the demise of Christian indie rockers Pedro the Lion, the project's brain trust, David Bazan, pursued a solo career that's so far culminated in the Fewer Moving Parts EP and now Curse Your Branches, his debut full-length as a solo artist. The changes between this work and his former band are many. The moral parables that were central to his previous band have been replaced with frank lyrics about Bazan's struggle with alcoholism and his newfound agnosticism. Musically, Pedro the Lion's simple but sturdy guitars have been replaced with sterilizing studio tinkering, resulting, at times, in too many ideas at once. For post-Christians 30somethings looking for mediocre indie pop and heart-on-sleeve theologizing, this is a doozy of an album. (by Josiah Hughes for Exclaim!)

There's been a lot of controversy around David Bazan in the Christian sphere, mainly because he was a Christian music artist back in the day, but is now leaning more towards agnosticism. I think it's a silly controversy. I think that people should do their research, be informed, and realize that even though he is not in the Christian music scene anymore, it doesn't discredit him as an artist or as a person just because he has real questions to real issues. It doesn't make him any less of a person and it doesn't mean that he should just be ignored. His questions should not be ignored, but should be answered by each person personally. Questions should be asked—of ourselves and of others. I think that we should respect the journey of faith.

I love that I have friends and people in my life who believe different things than me. It helps me grab a hold of what I REALLY believe and why. And not just about religion, but about society, and human behavior, and government, and pop culture. I think that the fact that our current culture has brought the lines of religion into EVERYTHING they say and do proves that there is a genuine need for answers . . . we're ALL searching for answers. We all have to KNOW what's real and what's right and what's truth. We just do. And I'm really glad that I spent most of my childhood growing up with a more agnostic approach to life. Because I feel like it's made my journey of faith more meaningful. It's made my personal relationships more meaningful. It helps bring me perspective to different situations I'm faced with in life. I've had my questions. I've found my answers. I've searched out what I believe and why, and it means so much more to me because of that.

As a person who leans more towards the creative side, I write a lot of things. I write songs. I write screenplays. I write blog entries. I write letters. I think of crazy things ALL the time. And every time I do, I come under a microscope. Sometimes it's my OWN microscope- I am TRULY my worst critic. Other times it comes from microscopes that my friends look at me through and sometimes it's the microscope of leaders and mentors past, and other times it's everyday people I meet on the street. But no matter who it is, the microscopes are all the same. It's the microscope that points out where you went wrong, where you could have done better, and where you should be, in the grand scheme of what each person's view of "success" is.

There's a new song by Paramore on their upcoming album, BRAND NEW EYES called PLAYING GOD. You can hear it here:

And it's actually one of my favorite songs from their upcoming album. Because it's so open and real and honest. Her lyrics . . . >
If God's the game that you're playing
Well, we must get more acquainted
Because it has to be so lonely
To be the only one who's holy

It's just my humble opinion
But it's one that I believe in
You don't deserve a point of view
If the only thing you see is you

You don't have to believe me
But the way I, way I see it
Next time you point a finger
I might have to bend it back
Or break it, break it off
Next time you point a finger
I'll point you to the mirror
. . . really points it out. Everyone is a critic. Everyone has an opinion. Some are valid, but most are just white noise. The song is about a riff she had with someone in her life who had been playing the "holier than thou" card and it really got to her and caused some serious issues for her as an artist.

I only hope that as I continue to express myself in art, in life and in love, I will constantly look in the mirror, and allow others to point me to the mirror as well. And that I would be able to call this journey of life my own, but allow others to be amazing landmarks along the way. :D

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