Saturday, November 03, 2012

Fickle Fans and True Love

The trajectory of celebrity is a mercurial thing.  Its arc swings up and down or levels at the fancy of the fan base which can go from hot to lukewarm to cold faster than Miley Cyrus changes hairstyles.  From time to time, an arc that seemed destined for oblivian reverses.  Mickey Rourke comes to mind.  I’m struggling to think of others. 

Yesterday, I blogged about Bob Dylan’s reinvention and how I, personally, enjoyed the “new” artist (or this permutation, anyway) a lot more than the “old” one.  For every one of me, there are probably 1,000 others who feel cheated when old familiars—iconic songs—are spun differently, both musically and lyrically. I can think of a number of once-popular musical groups whose changes over the years have left me sulking.  There’s disappointment when a favorite artist strays from his roots. Music fans, for the most part, want consistency.  Regardless of how many years or decades have passed between the chart-busting hit and the live performance, fans want to hear what they are familiar with.  They want a fuzzy blanket not a polar splash.  They go to concerts, maybe in large part, to recapture a moment.  Changing out lyrics or mixing up a beat or dropping some notes is like putting a mustache on the Mona Lisa.  Meanwhile, the artist is thinking, how do I stay current?  How do I keep breathing in a dub step world?

The end result of this is fan base erosion and, more often than not, the artist just kind of fades away.   Venues get smaller and smaller.  Groups that could pack an amphitheater are playing at apple festivals or, arguably worse yet, not at all.

So, people are both generally fickle and lacking a certain loyalty.  Imagine if the creator of the universe went hot and cold on his creatures or walked away and never looked back on us when we became less amusing. Chilling thought, huh?

Theologians write about the “immutability” of God.  This means that God doesn’t change with respect to his nature, character or attributes. God will always be an all-powerful God impeded by nothing and capable of accomplishing all he envisions.  God is the same today as he always was, undiminished or reshaped by time, and will be the same forever.    

Every good thing bestowed and every perfect gift is form above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow (James 1:17)          

Looking for something to celebrate today?  How about that?

In my DVD Player…  The Last Lions.  Love, loss, loyalty and courage are not exclusive to the human domain.  This is a suspenseful, heart wrenching and ultimately redemptive film that shows us life is both hard and precious.        

Photo from Pastor Lynette Santiago's blog.

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