I've always admired rock stars; not because they get to work up a sweat in front of thousands, but because they're brave enough to put themselves out there and sing what's in their heart. The songs connect and hang around for a very long time... like a rock... working on their night moves... as they run against the wind... too far from home.
The music may propel, but the lyrics give them staying power. No kid who grew up near Detroit (myself included) went through their teens and twenties without a Seger song as a personal anthem. Even today when I catch an earful of Bob clipped to an ad or a movie moment, I end up finishing the song in my head.
Seger songs are one part timeless and one part time capsule. He captures the angst or gladness of confused people and places. There's honesty in that, and power. Dale Carnegie based his whole speech giving system on it - speak from your point of view and others will believe and trust what you have to say.
Rock stars know how to do that. Their best songs, reflect themselves and end up resonating with their audience. So why is it so hard to be honest on a blog? What are we all so afraid of? Of being human?
I've had to deal with that myself after so many years in marketing. What if I say something that offends a potential client? What if how I feel isn't mainstream? I decided to stop having sheep for brains and break out of "flock" thinking.
A good artist, scientist or blogger doesn't care what others think. I don't think Dylan was concerned about the top ten when he wrote "Blowing in the Wind." I just can't visualize him watching the Viet Nam war protests and thinking, "My next song needs to capture this trend and I'll make millions." That's not Dylan's style, and we love him for his style.
They say not to die with your song still in you, apparently Seger has a few left to get out. His latest album has a song that may not go to the top of the charts, but it's on the top of my mind for taking a stand on climate change. "Between" speaks to where he is "living" now, still in the Detroit area, but with grave concern for global warming and the role both consumer's and companies play.
"...everybody sells something
everybody's got game
we all keep believing
no one is to blame
the world keeps getting hotter
ice falls in the sea
we buy a bigger engine
and say it isn't me..."
(Bob Seger Album: Face The Promise, Song: Between 2006)
"Between" is brave work for Seger. He's made a nice living off of hard-driving men, women and the companies who love his brand of rock. That was then, this is now. Even Seger recognizes that those hard-driving days of self indulgence need to be over and soon. Maybe it's because he took time off to be a stay at home dad and now feels the connection to kids and earth like so many women do. The point is, Seger still has lots to say and is willing to stand up a stage and sing it over and over and over.
We bloggers have been given our own stage to perform on. Let's not waste the gift. Our lyrics are recorded on the Internet cave wall where our audience can read them over and over. That's where real social change lies, in the voices of individuals not in third party politics.
Bob's taking a stand on global warming, in his own hometown no less. Way to go Bob! What are we willing to do personally and professionally to bring down global warming? Be brave. Post your thoughts here or on your own blog. Rock and Roll never forgets and neither does the Internet.