Sunday, October 26, 2008



From the never-ending of the past, music is a stunning instrument that has been used as a medium to echo on something and express what humans feel deep down inside. Immensely influential, music evolution throughout the centuries has taken the music industry by storm and today, as we all can see and hear, songs are expressive than ever particularly the rock music. While some people outside there are screaming out loud for rock music should be censored for its profanity at the same as another rock music follower marching on the street yelling “Rock music is human right”, I firmly say that censorship of rock music should not be censored at all for the basis of freedom. In my personal interpretation, if I am to say that censorship is the answer for all the intriguing negative issues regarding rock music, I would probably ask myself “Then what about all those obscenity in the music video?” or “Why only on rock music?”. This interesting concern seems interesting yet so blur and personally, I am so cool of pointing out fingers for I do not even sure who to be blamed. Is it the media, the parents or the children? The answer is yet to be formulated.
In today’s reality, rock music does really rock the generation and in present actuality, censorship is the term used to describe the act of editing, varying or preventing the listeners from hearing the music created in order to deny certain massages which contain explicit materials. Many people believe that negative words that are related to sensitive issues to the society, which has been used by rock musicians in their songs commonly, such as racism, religion, violence, sex, drugs, and politics, have been the main reason of violence and some other negative issue on our society today. According to, many ways of censorship has been used, such as blanking, bleeping, back masking, repeating, and skipping, to protect the society from all the mind-corrupting rock music lyrics. Do censorship really able to solve the problem? No. They do not need to cut down so much that the artist’s perspective is lost in the translation, making no point of painstakingly composing something significant for rock music lovers’ ears and for the industry. So, definitely total censorship is uncalled for. Above and beyond, the rationales for total rock music censorship are nothing but very subjective no matter how serious it sounds like.
Opposition might have in mind that rock music corrupts today’s youth and I have no doubt that this might be true. Sex pistols, Alkaline Trio, Iron Maiden, Nirvana and Sky juice coffee are the best embodiment of crudity and obscenity. Swear words, inappropriate languages linking to violence, drugs and surprising enough, sex are everywhere in their lyrics. They know they got it right the way they wanted and they flaunt it without a bit of shame. They have violated and taken freedom to be expressive for granted and make an ironic turn, interpreting it as the right to be extremely offensive. For example, Ozzy Osbourne’s and Judas Priest’s songs are well known for its suicidal lyrics, which according to Parental Music Resource Centre (PMRC) has “contributed quite a percent in the increase of commit suicide in teenagers”. Offensive tongue is a form of profanity that is mortifying the society and those words are very elusive as even it has been censored, it elegantly makes its way to be figured it out only by the first sound the words make. No matter how flawless this thought might have sounded, it is very unclear with a manipulative fashion in it. It is true that the music most rockers produced are very dark, irreverent and forceful; however, we have to bear in mind that most of these rock bands are not famous underground rock band and even if they are famous, it is the listeners who are craving for such music and seeking refuge from typical meaningless music. If there is no demand, there will be no such output products. We are the fans and the rock lovers are a part of the reason of their existence. In this context, I refer “we” as a group of people, old enough to think, deliberate and make judgement on everything we do. Moreover, today’s rock songs are all about true personification of love and life. Profanity is dead. Rockers that fashion, perform their work of art add to the exchange ideas and opinions, which is necessary for a colourful music industry. Nickelback and My Chemical Romance are the audible proofs of the less profanity used in lyrics, therefore I don’t think that censorship makes any relevant point as it takes away what the writer trying to deliver.
On one hand, some might even bring up the “sensitivity issue” for they said that the messages rockers trying to convey might touch some sensitive issues and rub up the wrong way. Rockers’ nature to be very expressive in everything they do. They tend to directly reflect their unsatisfactory for something on pieces of blank pages and spare no second thought acknowledging the use of an eraser. They say and write to represent their current emotions and struggles. Sexual immorality, degradation of women, religion and racism are the typical themes and it would be reflected throughout the melody. Condemning in public about fragile topics might lead to lethal social eruption. On the other hand, I say it is the beautiful freedom of free speech. The free reign in creating and displaying rockers works regardless the pieces of work offend some or even all persons’ feeling and values is what exactly drives them to accomplish the work they do. Yes, sometimes they do get a little bit too far with words but that is what they are paid for. Nowadays, which rockers is patsy enough to sing a song about racism or degradation of women when they know they would end up being catcalled the next morning in The Oprah Show? Rock music has always been an easy target for debate because it is very easy to condemn something we don’t really understand. Do we? Rock, as we view today works as a forum to convey their idea and thought. This is no different from any other politicians and religious leader using the platform to promote ideologies. If only just particular people are allowed to practise free speech, then everyone else shall be able to do if she or he desires. Besides, there is no absolute guarantee that anyone would be paying attention to it, even if they do, that is because they want to hear the truth. In August 2007, while playing a song “Daughter”, Vedder’s band Pearl Jam interjected riffs, altering lyrics to criticise President George Bush and the broadcaster immediately censored the rest of the song. Ironically, the plan backfired and they apologised by saying “We now believe it is a foundation of our free society to express thoughts”.
Another argument in rock music censorship is basically, are kids and students affected by inappropriate songs? In this case, because rock music rocks the generation, that is why kids are memorizing the songs, emulating the way the rock star dress and how they act. Music songs are now labelled as bringing the “Nightmares of Depravity” into childhood. Inability to tell the right from wrong makes them just simple takes what the artist say on trust, literally. Parents despise such bands and make point that they too much. Though this might be undeniable but I don’t think that censorship is the key to this impediment as for me, it is totally unfair to the charge solely on rock genre. How much is too much? Let’s just assume if rock music is censored, will there be any promise that other music genre won’t bring harm to kids’ development? Little girls “worship” Britney Spears as the ultimate icon but when she came out on stage in a very revealing, skin toned; two piece Jean Paul Gautier lingerie, performed provocative moves, doesn’t that make you to realise that “Oh, she is actually a pop icon!” and there is harshness in her songs? So, blaming rock music for social destruction is illogical. They say parents can’t restrain their children from going out to buy compact disk or listening to music, but I say that parents have the power to control and guide their children to differentiate right from wrong. This is why we have parenting skills to help them recognize the fine line until they turn 18.
In conclusion, in this case of rock music censorship, it is very hard to find middle ground because putting the blame entirely on rock music is really not that necessary. Music is only a reflection and is nothing more than that. The only way to win this game to keep on fighting for the right of free speech, which the skills that make our society stands up with the boldness of being expressive. The message might be right or sometimes even wrong but that is the true quality for me. It is not a new thing about the elderly expressing their fears about rock music. Rock music is only a simple meant of sharing emotion. Thus, rock music must not be censored.