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True of music, not of rock
Since this is a response to a few articles in the Who Newsletter, I
my mail server was functioning properly. However, it's acting funny and
refusing to quote the previous e-mail the I reply to. Maybe it's
I have a gay mail server. No, just kidding.
"Bigotry"? Now really. Well, that's better than "homophobia", so I'll
leave it alone. Still, I would advise you to consult a dictonary and
make sure you know what you're saying before you say it.
What all of you say is true about pure art and of music as a whole, but
not of rock music. My second favorite composer Menotti is as gay as
they come, but I couldn't give less of a damn, because Menotti writes
operas and classical music. He's not a rocker. In terms of the purely
artistic and musical element of Pete's music, nothing about Pete
himself effects the music. Pete's still the greatest musician that's
ever been, hands down, without question.
Rock is something more, it transcends art. Rock n roll is ALL ABOUT
personality, lifestyle, and social behavior, perhaps because rock is
something that we can crudely label as CULTURE. It's just like, if you
look at the pure ART of the book Wuthering Heights, it doesn't matter
who wrote it, just so long as it's a killer book. However, when culture
is taken into account, one looks at the history of the book and finds
out about Bronte's awesome struggle to covertly write and publish the
book despite being a social outcast, and from this cultural standpoint,
the book becomes a whole lot cooler. So it is with rock music.
Everything about the artist and the context that his work was created
matters. It matters whether Pete was doing drugs. It matters when Pete
had his spiritual awakenings. It matters how Pete had his hair cut
during this or that concert. All of it directly effects the meaning and
the very nature of the music. Of course, all of these things matter
in proportion to how much a part they are of the creative artist in his
act of creation, so i.e. Pete's drug habits are more important than his
hair cut, and so on. THE HIGH NUMBERS WEREN'T JUST PLAYING SOME GOOD
OTIS BLACKWELL TUNES, THEY WERE <bold>MODS</bold>! And that makes ALL the
If it made no difference, there would be no punk and no godfather. It
is because these personal things about the artist are parts of his
music that you all discuss them all the dang time, and of course you
very well should. Chew on that.
More than having to do with my feelings about homosexuality one way or
the other, it has more to do with distance. I would also be very thrown
for a loop were I to find out that Pete is really a giraffe from
Lithuania (PLEASE say it's not so). But I've known about Pete's
possible sexual tendencies for a long time now, so my "little illusions
about reality" are still nicely entact. I'm still not convincd one way
or the other the issue, and if it turns out he was gay, I can deal with
it, believe you me. But that doesn't change the fact that it matters!
If Pete wrote "Sea and Sand" about some drag queen he was trying to
impress because of his aggresive sexual feelings for him, the song
immediately is stripped of all its meaning. Evidence to refute this
possibility is the fact that the song occurs in Quadrophenia, and such
a song would not fit in with Jimmy's life (unless I have grossly
One thing about this newsletter: it's never boring.
"If you complain you disappear
Just like the lesbians and queers"