Saturday, 3 May 2014

And now you do what they told you. . .

Growing up as a child of the 80s, my early musical experience of the fusion of music genres was watching Run DMC and Aerosmith's Walk this way.  It blended what I loved about rap music (the incessant rhymes) and rock or metal music (the guitar-driven licks, riffs and distortion).

In recent months I have been watching and digesting global news reports and thinking about power, those in power, those who desire and vie for it and those who are aware of it but don't hold it.  A part of me wants to say excuse the profanity in the song, and excuse my selection of it as the subject for today's blog post and then I think..... no excuses needed.

I have always been a conspiracy theorist from way (doesn't matter what the theory is, I'm interested in what's not seen) and the song that comes to mind when I think about being true to yourself and knowing your place with whatever establishment that you find yourself in, you actually do have some power to shape what you can do.  The following lines speak to me about perceptions, who benefits when tragedies occur, who has the power to make decisions and confine people to a state of order (through whatever means necessary).

Those who died are justified, for wearing the badge, they're the chosen whites
You justify those who died, by wearing the badge, they're the chosen whites

As a music teacher, I have marked several performances over the years (or attempted cover versions of) Killing in the name.  There were never any vocalists that were game to sing it, but group performances of the song were attempted with just the instrumentalists.  The swearing in the song isn't the challenge, the ability to play seamlessly with the different tempo is.  Music students often struggled to get the timing right, the abrupt change into different tempo was challenging, as there is no gradual slowing down or speeding up to assist with it these transition points.  For me this was a testament to the immense communication between the band members, displayed in the musicianship of Rage Against The Machine.

The three main sections show the movement, the subtle shifts which represent the dawning of your own realisation in the following lines:
Section 1) And now you do what they told ya
Section 2) And now you do what they told ya (now you're under control)
Section 3) F*** you I won't do what you tell me

If you're needing a song to get you through some taxing times in the differing contexts that you have a role to play in - blast this song up to full volume.  Especially if you're particularly angry about something and just need to release or vent about the situation.  I highly recommend, blasting this song in your living room, when there is nobody at home, when the neighbours are away, and do some head banging - alone.  If you have friends that have been through a similar experience, what better way to support them than by moshing as a group to the repeated lines F*** you I won't do what you tell me!   
Moral of the story - find constructive ways of releasing your anger or pent-up frustrations.
For me it's blasting this song or working out for the first time in forever because you can't punch people in the face - that's unprofessional behaviour in the workplace and just all round general assault (unless you're a boxer, then that's part of the activity).

And now you do what they told you (now you're under control). . .