Wednesday, 23 March 2005

Rappers Don't Kill People Metal Fans Do

Caroline Sullivan in The Graun asks "Are the gunshots fired at a Nas gig on Monday a symptom of increasing violence in hip-hop?" Seeming unaware that ex-Pantera member Dimebag Darrell was shot dead by a fan last December.

OK, so this might only suggest that Metal fans are better shots, if it weren't for that fact that Nathan Gale, the killer, also indiscriminately shot into the fans too.

Actually, when Dimebag was shot the Graun also did a little opinion piece. Except in this case it was fairly even handed and more about Darrell's life. It did ask the obvious question at the end: Is Metal responsible in some way?
The murders have posed questions about the morbid fantasies that often seem to come with heavy metal. Fans of the music are not preternaturally psychotic or out to harm each other, says Brad Tolinski: "Metal is not a violent culture. The shows are all about channelling aggression. By and large it's the performer and the audience against the establishment." Still, Tolinski concedes, "metal fans are obsessive, and identify heavily with bands and their music. If someone takes that away from them they'll be upset." Tolinski knows from experience at Guitar World how readers respond if something is not to their liking. "There are a lot of lunatics out there," he says.

So people are aware that Metal is in someway a catharsis. Why isn't rap seen that way? It's not like the popular rappers nowadays are anymore believeable than bespandexed 80's poddle rockers or any less pantomime in their villainry. It's not like violent death is unique to either style. The Blues is full of shootings and even folk music contains it's fair share of dead bodies.

As I've said before does anyone really believe that Eric Clapton shot a sheriff?


I and I said...

Actually, Bob Marley shot the sheriff first. But neither of them did not kill no deputy.

Paul said...

Good point!

I was sort of echoing Spearhead's line, from Of Course You Can, about:

"They're fuckin' with Ice T but they don't even care if
Eric Clapton's singin' I Shot the Sheriff!"

And if ignoring Bob Marley is good enough for Micheal Franti, it's good enough for me.

The deputy remains in an ambigous double negative, though.