Location: Adairville, Kentucky, United States

I'm a songwriter and social commentator who sees things a little bit differently from most--and that's a good thing. You can email me at

Thursday, October 12, 2006


INTELLECTUAL HONESTY. You either have it or you don’t. Songwriting is becoming more and more like an intricate dance around certain topics at the expense of honesty.

We are told how and why to feel and think throughout our lives by people we don’t even like, and it affects which of the rolodex of potential words we will choose. We fear that someone might otherwise get offended, so we settle for words and phrases designed to placate the almighty easily offended.

Responsibility assumed from being in the public sphere of scrutiny makes a certain code of self-imposed limitations inevitable, and again--at the expense of intellectual honesty, and even a better song for history’s sake. Truth only happens rarely, and in song it is refreshing (to me).

A lot of trail blazers like Frank Zappa, Ted Nugent, Pink Floyd, and later, EMINEM, took it upon themselves to not be harassed by lunatics who would limit free speech and the absolute free flow of intellectual honesty.

Opinions vary as to an artist’s accuracy or legitimacy, but the fact remains--we have a right to say what we really want to say (the obvious legal exceptions--yelling “FIRE!” in a crowded theatre, unless there really is one, inciting violence, etcetera).
I suggest we vigorously defend the right to be offensive within the law, or we’ll lose even the right to define for ourselves what “offensive” means. It’s already happening; case in point: the Tipper Gore/Frank Zappa fiasco.

Finally, I suggest opening your mind to thinking about the fact that young people purposefully buy offensive material specifically because it contradicts what they had been taught was acceptable, and human beings, in their very nature, never settle for what someone says--they seek to disprove it by rightly listening to the alternative point of view--hence the term, ALTERNATIVE MUSIC.

Viva la difference.


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