Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Fame... out here on my own!


Today's youth lack of culture is bewildering... In 2006 I was in a writers' conference in Portland - Oregon, and one of the workshop members (Who were mostly in their early twenties) was reciting her poem. When she finished, I turned to the workshop leader and said "It reminds me of Duran Duran's "Hungry like the wolf""... And he said: "I knew there was something familiar in it!"... To this the young girl replied: "What is Duran Duran?"... Not "who" but "what"! She had never heard of the mega boy band of the 80s, who almost single-handedly put British pop on the map.
In another installment of the series, I was talking to my students about ex-ex-Spice girl (I say ex-ex- because they seem to have reunited) Geri Halliwell's rendition of the weather girls' "It's raining men" and to my astonishment, they had never heard of the original song. Not only this, but when I talked about the super TV clip which was a remake of the iconic scene from the movie "Fame" (Where Bruno Martelli's father puts his music on full blast from the ghetto blaster and the students create a traffic jam in NY while dancing in the street), I discovered that there too, they had no clue as to what I was saying!
I mention all of this because, if someone never heard of "Fame" then most likely the name "Irene Cara" doesn't mean anything. And even those who heard of it, right now, the name rhymes with nothing. And yet, Irene Cara was the actress-singer who played the role of Coco Hernandez in the movie (For a full press release of her achivements please go to http://www.irenecara.com/), along this feat she managed something no other singer in the history of music managed to do: She was the only ever person to sing twice on the academy awards night, interpreting the two major hits that spawned from the movie, the up tempo "Fame" and the ballad "Out here on my own".
In contrast to one another, one of the songs boasts of self-assurance, whereas the second is a creative person's lament to being alone in a harsh world. The two sides of the same coin eventually.
As Beirut/NTSC was growing in terms of posts and information, I had a big worry: Was anyone actually reading this?... Lately, my brother told me to install sitemeter and have my mind at ease. Again, this worried me more: What if, indeed, no one was reading this... But I had to know.
Somewhere between "fame" and "out here on my own", I now know that my readership is not huge, but at least there is traffic it seems. I was certainly pleased that the people reading were by no means friends or family only, but also people from Urgway, Hong Kong, US, UK, etc.... Which is quite pleasing. Of course, for a blog that has not been advertised, I cannot expect a readership bigger than the one I have, but at least I now know I am not alone. Thank you.
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