As I was in the office of WKMS-FM 91.3 in Murray, it was refreshing to hear the band Fugazi’s song titled, “Waiting Room.” After hearing the song on the radio, I began to dance, even though my dance moves are horrible.
This song was important because one of the segments was talking about capitalistic society and how it is overrunning our nation. It is amazing how a song can create such a political standpoint against our society and show people the government can use different ideas across the globe to distract Americans from the problems that exist here.
Today’s songs do not match up to the classic ballads or sounds of the punk rock genre. Punk rock helped me see the world in many different perspectives from what others can see.
It is not just the guitar that gives punk rock songs the majestic sound of anger, sorrow and angst against the society that we have been living in for years. It is heard in the messages that are carried to us from many bands across the nation that never went mainstream.
Mainstream American music is absent of a message and usually receives awards, while punk rock stays on the message at hand.
Punk rock originated in England and was brought over during the “British Invasion,” which was a huge influence on the genre and started on other musicians. As years go by, this genre has decreased from many radio stations and also exclusively on records, which is a tough loss due to the idea that this genre was too rough or just noise.
No, it is not noise; it is music. It is easier to dance to electronic dance music or rap and people do not understand what messages are being delivered. Music in general has to have a message with instruments that can set the mood of the song.
Unlike other genres, punk rock is all about instruments that carry on rebellion for democracy, or anarchy even. There are instances where it is easily mistaken to not love a genre because of miscommunication, or it is simply too hard to listen to.
Growing up, I was always a fan of punk rock because it saved me from the worst times and was there for me through best times. Bands such as Dag Nasty, Off!, Black Flag, The Clash, Career Suicide, Bad Brains, Suicidal Tendencies, Sum 41, Riot Grrrl, The Misfits and so many others have influenced me to reach the broader outlooks of not only the genre itself, but also my life.
Every single song speaks to me and provides insight on the world around me to help me understand that my life is something that I actually have to fight for because people are fighting every day to make it through our capitalist society.
Politics weren’t really my cup of tea at one point, but thanks to punk rock, I became more involved and understanding that the system will be corrupt in any and every form. It also talks about life as you grow.
There is not a single day that I do not listen to punk rock and not learn and grow from it. For example, one of my favorite songs of all time was, “Institutionalized,” by Suicidal Tendencies. It helped me comprehend the idea that we, as Americans, are all trying to reach that common goal and achieve the so-called “American Dream,” which practically doesn’t exist anymore.
Ideals are what kill a nation. In general, music is music. However, punk rock will be the light in your fire and your drive to everyday life. It is one genre to definitely listen to.
Column by Taurus Moore, Graduate student from Wadesboro, NC.