The value of censorship

So I found myself more and more facing a delema. Censorship. Let me explain.

It started as, on a whim, I recommended that we persue this Rockin the Suburbs deal going on in Rochester, PA in just over a week. It had a spot open. It’s being headlined by Sponge. And our friend CRA$H was on the bill. So they were open to having non-bands involved. This guy aparently loved our concept, but not our language as this is billed as an “all ages/family” event. Ok, we’ve done TV, and I get the impression this won’t be nearly as strict. No problem.

So this other group comes on our radar. Doing some pretty cool things, from the looks of it, with music and art in the Pittsburgh area. Same situation. But this time, I’m feeling preached at for my language choice.

I’ve stated many times, we went into this whole “rap group” thing with no plan. No style. No idea. We had a handful of beats and figured out what to do with them. We wrote and sang what entertained us. There’s no marketing plan here. But now we have to consider these things.

I had a recent discussion with one of my cohorts in music about taking on too many of these censored gigs. I believe the comment was “if they don’t want to book us for being us, then why should we change. We make this music for us.” That’s true. We started making this for us. And maybe a little bit of the rockstar feeling being on stage performing. But the more people that are listening out there, the more rewarding.

Now, I don’t condone repackaging, or overall changing ourselves to get in these people’s faces. Our approach to the Rochester show, for instance. We took a look at our song cataloge, and determined what songs would and wouldn’t work. I’m not apposed to dropping an F-bomb from a song. They were likely inserted for flow, and there’s plenty of replacements. And I realize that live, most listeners won’t realize the difference. It’s not like we’re all over the radio and everyone knows the words. And our representation on stage doesn’t change. We still have our individual styles. The toilet paper. The guy int he monkey suit. The show and material is not misrepresented.

Now, I would never expect a Dr. Espling or Pumpkin King to do the same. Those are acts that are hinged on the horrorcore, or “murder rap” genre. If you wanted to make that family friendly, you’d probably be better off leaving it on mute. There’s that line. But acts like ours, or NES‘s nerdcore style, and especially emcee lb‘s style, are all broader and can reach much more of an audience.

In no way do I intend to do these kinds of shows on a regular basis. It would drive me nuts. But if we can do this every once in a while, getting ourselves in front of a few more faces that would have never have seen us otherwise, I don’t see a problem.

Now, perhaps next time, I’ll analyze how CRAP has become role models for the youth of this country….


Side Notes:

  • BIG thanks to Nate Da Mac for his latest contribution to the CRAP awesomeness. This GTA-esque image is the best I’ve seen in a damn long time. This guy always delivers something that represents our group.
  • I got to attend my first Geek Night at the Church Brew Works and got to catch up with Cyntha, Norm, and for a brief minute, John from my Podcamp and Twitter ventures. Good beer, good conversations. Loved it. I’ll be back in December for sure.
  • No, I hadn’t “podfaded”. I was simply sick. I had a hellacious bout with vomiting last week and really, just now, am returning to my regularly scheduled stomach tolerance.
  • I have started work on the upcoming, epic, fist ever, RWF DVD. The Sorgstock 2006 Anthology. I have the matches collected, and have over an hour and a half of backyard wrestling. The menu is designed, and we’ll be doing brand new commentary this weekend. And most likely sell this thing at shows at a ridiculously low price. After that, my personal DVD projects will be: CRAP TV Volume 2, then Sorgstock 2007 Anthology: RWF

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