War Criminal: Older People Complaining About the Current State of Pop Music

June 21, 2012 | Comments (0) | by Adam Blank

Not a week goes by when I check my Facebook and don't see some snarky post by some 30+ year old man bitching about Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga or any of the other 4 pop stars currently inhabiting planet earth.

What the fuck is going on here?  Aren't you a grownup?  You have a career and a wife and kids.  Or you don't and you live in your parents' basement while amassing an unparalleled blu-ray collection.  Whatever.  It really doesn't matter if you're an accomplished adult or an unemployed turd of a blogger drunk on cheap whisky in the middle of the night.  You should have come to terms with pop music already. 

Here's the memo you apparently missed:  They stopped making pop music geared towards you the moment you walked across the stage and snagged your diploma.  Whether that was your high school diploma or you happened to buy yourself another few years of youth by going to college is completely inconsequential.  The moment you got out of school and tried to forge an existence is the moment pop music stopped being made with you in mind.  So take a deep breath, shed a tear for your lost innocence, briefly complain about the useless Grammy Awards and plunge into the Wilco catalog already.
Typical fan at a Wilco concert

Our parents went through this with grace and style.  Or at least mine did.  I grew up with a sister who was  the perfect age for a full-blown New Kids on the Block obsession.  Posters, dolls, lunch boxes, and the constantly repeating "Hangin' Tough" playing on the newfangled CD player...which cost $400 and was only connected to the stereo of the entertainment center in the living room.  I'm sure my dad wasn't thrilled with his daughter's skeevy-looking masturbation material hanging all over her bedroom walls, tempting her to seek out her budding womanhood, but he didn't complain about it incessantly, even though that period of time was probably weird as fuck for him.  And he would certainly never have 'liked' an anti-New Kids on the Block group on a social network, had they existed at the time.  He handled it the correct way; the entire rise and fall of a pop group wasn't worthy of his acknowledgment, even though his daughter was obviously rubbing it out like a bonobo monkey in heat to the 24" x 36" poster of Joey, Danny, Jonathan, Jordan and the other guy. 

Joey's hair is ribbed for her pleasure

My dad might have been an anomaly though.  Even back in the early 60's, adults were writing songs about that stupid teenage fad that were The Beatles.  In 1964 alone, there were over 200 songs recorded about the Beatles, and a good chunk of them weren't positive.

Now, I'm not comparing Justin Bieber to The Beatles. And I don't necessarily think that complaining about Justin Bieber puts you on the wrong side of history.   In fact, I'm pretty sure I've never even heard a Justin Bieber song.  BECAUSE I STOPPED LISTENING TO THE THINGS THAT PLAY THAT KIND OF MUSIC OVER 10 YEARS AGO.  I'd be willing to bet that I wouldn't like it, but I'm at that age (and posses enough self-awareness) that I realize I'd probably have flat out dismissed rock 'n' roll as an incomprehensible noisy mess had it just arrived on the scene during my early 30's.
Adam fighting the good fight c. 1962

The point is, this shit obviously isn't for us and we can't predict what stands the test of time.  I'd like to think that our parents would have drown us in the nearest creek bed had they known "Don't Stop Believing" and "Wanted Dead or Alive" would be two of the top karaoke songs of all time.  For all we fucking know, our grand-kids will be singing along to Ke$ha on the 2040's equivalent of the Guitar Hero franchise, Auto Tune Glory, on the PS8.  The future very well may suck for us, but it simply isn't up to us to decide.  In the meantime, listen to the shit you like (which, judging by the militant pop-music haters out there, is just the same old shit you listened to in high school anyway) and leave the brand new pop music to high school girls and DJs at gay clubs.