Thursday, December 3, 2009
Fake DOOM Capitalism Or Branding in the counter culture?
Whens the last time you saw MF DOOM?
I was a guest at the Metal Fingers Doom 11/21/09 Beat session in L.A. Everyone including myself expected MF DOOM to perform. Although its true that Metal Fingers is a monicker/alter ego used by MF DOOM Its said especially associated with his work as a producer...According to the absolute authority on Urban culture
And other hip hop heads defining the culture. Regardless this misunderstanding was worn by most of those in attendance. Many who came from as far as San diego to see The Mask Beat up Beats. And Beats were indeed the focus of the evening. Beat heads know their beats and came far and wide to hold up the Walls with nod and sway. A room painted with underground genius..the crowd stacked and sweated, all eager artist in there own right. L.A. has brilliant cults of creative rebels easily inspired by an authentic jesture. Inspired by a Dj sharing their interpretations of life through sound. All gathered to honer the image of the villian MF DOOM. The Brand is what was served. This was a special night.
For some of those who attended it was a giant joke on them..angry and confused it was difficult to breath comfortably with the tension choking senses soaked in DOOM dialed anguish. "Dont you want your money back?" One guy quiped as I passed him. The fact that I didn't pay, thanks to the truly generous promoters, wasn't why I couldn't give him the answer he wanted. It was because at the moment I decided I was willing to process the evening as a cultural whole as an experiment and uncover the cause to this effect..Or vice versa.
I was entertained as well as Inspired by the discussions that rang through the crowd toward the end of the night. Long after all doubts dissipated. Discussions came about conjuring epiphany. One being the fact that DOOM has staged other incidents across america including a rock the bells event. So it's likely the promoters had less than nothing to do with this display in L.A.
It didn't take to much work to see a mad scientist effecting culture with villainous experiments on his peers. But was it a concious decision..a Brand move? Or a just plain bad Idea.
Branding can be said, by me, to be the symbol based proliferation
of an identity or concept and it's merge with consciousness.
Symbols attached to meaning designed to marry consciousness
In order to induce an illusion of value symbols representing an Idea are made highly visible
through many schemes and marketing tactics. My favorite being the cultural virus. Which I associate
with a mouth to mind, sort of underground branding. The kind truly innovative concepts and fart joke movements alike
seem to receive. No matter how it's done, perceived value is created by proper branding.
It's also important to recognize that Language is a branding game.
The relationship between language and branding and it's influence on culture is profound.
Symbols guide consciousness. Symbols with certain associations actually can inspire the creation of cultures
(which often means the destruction or evolution of other cultures).
In the same frame it can easily be said that each individual is a culture.
A bucket of Habits and associations with past experiences,
projections of the future experiences,
clouded and ground into the moment..
not always experienced..
Any authentic, sincere expression of emotion or experience I interpret as style.
MF DOOM has developed a style that is unique and
speaks volumes about the true potential of the human imagination.
Because many can feel the grace and grit, identifying with that same potential in themselves,
through his music he has developed a following.
But what is being followed is the idea of DOOM...Not DOOM at all.
That Idea exists in us all.
It must or else there would be no space for us to embrace DOOM, no reference for what DOOM Means to us..
We want to live DOOM through the idea of DOOM. We want to be DOOM!
We make space for comprehension and understanding based on experience and imagination.
But when we make an icon we are following the rules of their imagination and experience...not our own.
A true Villian Knows this. A true villain also Knows that Branding in the
Counter Culture can be a double edged sword. Either you get conditional consistent
support or you get no face...no head..no way..but even that could change with a blog entry...
Intro to DOOMS performance 5:50
As a Villain DOOM has a responsibility to his fans and family to refine the mask in the man in order to remain inspirit, Inspired and prolific. The mask should never be confused for the man. Especially as an artist. Doom should be aloud to create from any perspective possible. No one can argue against the evidence. DOOM makes Hits! A lot of incredible poetry passes through this man and his voice is a staple in the Hip Hop culture! Which is why the thought of seeing DOOM live feels like home. But the DOOM is an IT, a self proclaimed villain with multiple personalities, So why should we expect more from him? Even for money? What do we expect from our Ideas of DOOM? What do you expect from your idea of Icon..what truely stirs you about a Star? What should a Model be used for? ...And Politicians, what should we expect?
Were we wrong all along? Am I afraid of the power DOOM has over me? Are we afraid to be star struck again? DOOM is a selfish asshole rage. I cant' believe he betrayed me confusion...Why am I so angry pain..I want my money back..because money is worth more than this experience blind conviction.
But before you enter total disillusionment, There are a couple of possibilities to consider.
The artist behind the DOOM, realizing that he is simply a brand, cast a part of his ego into a villainous outfit, designs a scheme to attract more attention by repelling those closet to him, his fans, by sending an Impostor doom jrs wearing the myth on his face. Dressed in the Idea of DOOM Sr to play beats even "perform" in his place...the buzz would be incredible all over the world..Its a way to add to the Myth of DOOM!
DOOm hasnt thought about what would happen if he sent surrogates out to perform and essentially be DOOM. Maybe hes tired, In love Or at home writing.
The man behind the DOOM phenomenon isnt interested in furthering his career as an artist. So he is sabotaging his fan base with a string of fake concert appearances. Perhaps he wants to become a farmer, a writer, a chocolatier ...and a hypnotherapist..oh, thats me...
Maybe DOOM dosnt' even exist!
Have I said to much?!
Why should he care what I think anyway? Regardless He's the one on the albums. (and dont say or "is he"?? all sarcastic like, because that really wouldn't matter either.)
Somebody is out there making amazing music and not showing up for events. It dosn't matter who they think they are. It's the fans that make him brilliant. Without anyone to receive and reflect on the Idea of DOOM there can be no DOOM. There can only be a man in a mask talking to himself.
You know what would be cool is if there were many Dooms with the same mask but individual styles. A camp under one Name, one FACE. That would be my kinda brilliant! So go ahead..steal my Idea...I just wanna see it. (and a percentage (20%))
In the end the idea of DOOMs power to move the crowd was given to him by the connection we made with his ideas. And as long as there is product pushing commerce there will be connections made to Ideas. Not all of these ideas supported by your dollar are half as good as the Idea of DOOM. But this has taught, me again, that the message is far more impressive than the messenger. The messenger is not always the message. Especially if the Messenger is wearing a symbol of a messenger. At that point it's impossible, even for the man to tell where the message might originate from. In this rare case, both the man and the messenger may become a mask...even to themselves. The Ego is easily inflated and can cause a cacophony of psychological cultures. Many of which arn't interested in integrating with other perspectives but perpetuating their own personal cultures at all costs.
This is what brands do. They want you to connect with the symbol and the "message". The messenger, symbol and message are ideally to become synonymous in order to be effective. Which clicks into a social structure and moral system. Whether personal or transcendent fabricated or archetypal. Everything must and does stand for something. The truth is even a matter of perspective and experience. I.E cheap shoes=cheap person...when they say cheap, in spirit is what they mean when they judge a person by their mask. It can be also perceived in the opposite way. Expensive Shoes=cheap spirit. To someone judging another for dressing well their only fruit can be spiritual poverty and insecurity. Brands that are symbols of wealth, even awareness are all void of a message apart from the message the consumer gives to it. Regardless of what the messenger tells them. Its up to the individual to create meaning. Which ultimately means that the consumer has the true power to build or break a brand. To design a belief system Or create their own Brand.
Amazing how such a gifted artist can inspire so much speculation and reflection. In my mind... While flippin the bird to so many fans, in my shared experience. Of course I will only speak for myself.
Did DOOM calculate the consequences?
Im writing about how interesting this evening was to me. How it was a concert experience i couldn't have expected and how its helping me meditate on the true potential of Memes, branding, imagination and sincerity.
Fake DOOM good Idea or No?
I say neither.
Art is reaction. The reaction to this incident has been illuminating and positive because I choose it...but for most, it was a reason not to support an artist who dosn't support his audience. It's a shame because the man is an amazing artist.
And if he's reading this, all I want to say is,
Show Daniel the love DOOM shows you..Give the people what they want and you'll be able to make the living your reaching for. Stop the decay on your brand. In an age of disillusionment it's possible your message and mask will soon be associated with legendary arrogance instead of simply legendary.