Improv, Comedy, Women, Melbourne and everything in between.
To my generation, Australia Day might as well be renamed “Hottest 100 Day”, or, alternately – “Congratulations Hayley, you’re growing more and more out of touch with Hipster music everyday Day”. Or, January 26th: Curse of being #1 on Triple J’s Hottest 100.
On this particular day, my generation celebrate our nation’s colonisation by drinking imported Rekorderlig ciders, nibbling veggie burgers and soy sausages derived from the machines tearing down the Amazon, and sitting in a park listening to music sung in a raspy voice about chocolate, cigarettes, or owls. This music is most commonly formed by a melody of ukuleles and banjos fused with dub-step. I think an apt renaming is an order, perhaps; “The Celebration of ‘Music: All Form and No Content’ Day”.
I proceeded to listen to the countdown as it’s apparently a thing in my generation to do so – and I didn’t recognise 90% of the songs. Every year it seems as though my people make the same mistake of raising their hopes as high as their current state of mind and are disappointed when their favourite song isn’t number one. Hey guys, at least it wasn’t Gangnam Style.
Rap/Hip Hop always cops criticism, particularly from the hipster crowd. I’ll leave the hipsters to their music which often specialises in “all form and no content” that’s usually about a bearded crooner who has his breath and wallet taken away by an unshaven-yet-beautiful french woman he meets at a music festival. I was disappointed that most of the music I listen to was absent from the countdown. Kendrick Lamar and Kanye West’s G.O.O.D Music received one measly song each, both placing in the lower, less popular half of the countdown. A$AP Rocky and Childish Gambino didn’t even get a look in – which, I understand, is because they’re not popular enough in the Australian market yet, nor are they ironically “publicly underground” to earn a spot on the “This is what cool young Australians Listen To Top 100”. Rap inspires me, teaches me, and has more emotional power than most indie music. The genre has encouraged me to place more importance on words rather than sound and form and concern for “becoming too mainstream” – because in rap, success is celebrated, not reviled.
Australia Day, for my generation, is no longer about reflecting on our settlement in this country. It’s about being wasted before noon and getting angry over a countdown we so idolise. Strangely enough, I enjoy the countdown, because there is that lovely feeling of excitement you get when you hear one of your favourite songs (or, if you’re me, a song you have at least heard of). How validating it is to hear your favourite song on the chart… but wait… that means other people have heard the song… but… it’s my favourite song… I DISCOVERED THIS BAND FIRST! *posts Facebook status about discovering said band before everyone else did*.
Once a song – which, clearly, a majority of young Australian listeners have voted for – is number one, we’re not allowed to like it any more – liking something popular? Ugh, that’s so lame.
Let’s not forget that it’s also Australia Day.
I deplore the idea that Australia Day brings out a side of some of us that perpetuates the racist, intoxicated stereotype most of us work so hard to distance ourselves from. Getting drunk at 1pm with an australian flag wrapped around your Bonds singlet and Aussie flag tattoos on your nipples can really bring out the Xenophobic redneck in some people. We should be a bit more thankful for what we have in this wonderful country. Contrary to the tone of this post, I am an incredibly proud Australian – but I don’t represent everybody, and I don’t denounce other cultures to prove my patriotism.
Congratulations Macklemore – the success of Thrift Shop is now suffering in mainstream hell with Gotye‘s Somebody I Used to Know, partying with Nicki Minaj after she signed with Lil Wayne.
Ah, the curse of being number one on Triple J’s Hottest 100.
I wonder who the next victim will be? I’m looking at you, Flume.