Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The "Stagedive" Project

A documentary.

Coming soon.

Stay tuned.

An education on unity

Hello everybody, I'm back from the long break I needed.

Back to the scene, back to reality, and I'm opening my eyes and seeing nothing but conflicts. I feel I should take on this in a less aggressive tone. I want to talk to you guys. I want you guys, you music-lovers, you giggers, you musicians, to read what is in my mind.

"Where have all the kids gone?"
Ever noticed how the crowds in our gigs have minimized? A venue that used to be jam-packed now result in handfuls. Ever noticed? No, probably not, because you didn't attend the last gig.
I understand, going to gigs every week is a tough thing to keep up if you're busy and have another life to live. But there are many people who can juggle their personal and music life, even combining both together. Why? Because they love, truly love music.

I'm not pointing fingers, and saying those who do not attend all the gigs are not music-lovers. But the ones I'm truly disappointed in are the ones who claim to be "a total gigger" or "budak gig/hardcore/punk", but never bother to attend the shows. Those who say "I love you, (band name), I want to see you live!" but never attend the band's gigs.
Mahal la, jauh la, tak de semangat la... Hm. Is that really passion? Think for yourselves. I know a vocalist of a band *name disclosed*, who has achieved a masters degree, working, going into full adulthood and playing in a band. There are many like these. How do they manage it? Because they want the scene to survive.

without you, without us, the scene will not exist.
Come back, kids. Don't talk about "a music scene" if you're not contributing to it.

Another thing that has always lacked in our Malaysian scene: girls. I think girls only take up about 15% of the whole scene? Girls that rock out, I mean.
Yes, we see many girls, but those girls are usually girlfriends to artists or girlfriends of the guys that mosh. How many girls to we see going crazy in the crowd? Not many. To be honest, most of the girls in KL who appear in gigs often... are all my friends. And that's pretty pathetic.
I want the girls that read this to know that it is not something menacing, our music scene is not a threat, it's not dangerous. Don't be intimidated to go to a gig to see your favourite band just because you think you might get trampled. It doesn't always happen that way. If you have the urge to rock out listening to a band on Facebook, you can have as much right to rock out at their shows. Show your faces, ladies. It's time we relive the grrrl power.

"Different genres, different tastes"
The amount of endurance we give to those who say "I am a hardcore fan only/indie fan only". Stop with that. Are you saying you have never grown up listening to Backstreet Boys? Never once head-banged to AC/DC, or never sung to Hujan? Be realistic.

You can prefer a certain type of genre, or band, but that shouldn't stop you from supporting other bands, other genres. The scene is not about pick-and-choose. It's about unity. It's about sharing with each other the different sounds we can create for each other. It's not about discriminating or judging or disliking. It's not about fighting in the crowds, it's not about getting annoyed at people who are jumping around too much at a band you don't like.

It's about being there to support. If you don't like the band, don't be an ass. Just walk away from the crowd and sit out until the next band. Don't you hate it when you're enjoying a band and there's someone beside you talking shit about the band? Well, don't be that person.

"Too much of the same doses"
Another reason perhaps: everybody's getting bored of the same line-ups, same places, same people. Understandable. But then again, if we never support the scene, how can the scene move forward, and change? If no new bands sprout out, if no one organizes/attends gigs, how can the line-ups and how can the scene vary?

If you're really a die-hard music supporter, you wouldn't be fussy over who's in the scene and who's performing. You should support whoever it is that's playing, playing for you. Like I mentioned earlier, be there for the ones you love, and respect those that you dislike; they are still musicians.

"We need the unity."
We can't continue living in a scene where there are all these people and communities who are against each other, or trying to create trouble amongst themselves.
We need a mixture, a mutual understanding, a crowd that has a choice to sit out or be part of enjoying the bands that perform. A good example is this year's KL BIG PARTY.
It was a mixture of bands. Indie, hardcore, metal, ska, everything. On one side, I see sooo many people attending, and it's great. It feels like there's unity.... until you go into the audience, and you see hardcore kids getting annoyed or taking the piss of the indie kids.
Guys, don't label yourselves. You're just... people. Humans. The whole point of these type of gigs is to allow everybody to have a chance to accept one another's music. It's frustrating that it's got to the point where we have to be taught to accept, when it should be automatic.

These gigs are meant to allow everybody to unite together and enjoy together.
If there's a ska band, come and skank and enjoy. Or just sit out. Don't stand in the crowd and complain about being shoved around.
If there's an indie band, come and pogo and enjoy. Or just sit out. Don't stand in the crowd and complain about being around overhyper people.
If there's a metal band, come and headbang and enjoy. Or just sit out. Don't stand in the crowd and complain about being knocked in the head.
If there's a hardcore band, come and release and enjoy. Or just sit out. Don't stand in the crowd and complain about being kicked in the face.

It is mutual understanding we need. You know how the crowds work for different sorts of music. It's cool that you want to check out the band playing, but you can't expect to be listened to when you say "Dude why the fck did you kick me!?" when everyone else in the crowd is kicking around. If you want to be safe, if you want to watch the band undisturbed... move away a little bit. This is just how it works. This will help create peace, help create a happy atmosphere in the gigs we go to.

And those who do enjoy and pogo/skank/headbang, etc etc... if you get mad at another person for hurting you... that's just... wrong. Before, we would accidentally bump a person, and end up being friends with them. Now, it's automatically, "Eh, babi la kau!"... Why?
Or those people who purposely kick and hurt people? I understand hardcore moves, I do, people go crazy. But whoever they hurt, whoever they touch, they don't do it on purpose. They don't purposely look for someone to hurt. It just happens because everyone is doing the same thing. Those people who try to hurt a certain person in the crowd, just get lost.......

Readers, whatever type of genre you listen to, I want you to know that the importance of music doesn't lie in the differences but the similarities. Music is melody, all sorts of genres are the same melody. One melody. Why should we keep up the conflicts and disputes, when we should be busy looking for better gig venues, new bands and contributing to a living scene?
Put away those angry emotions, and just come together to keep the scene very much alive.

With Love,
KL Mosher