Texting with Beav late last night. As has always been the case, since we first left the comfort of home as teenagers, I still “work” for myself, as an artist, a thinker, a pioneer, a vagabond, a bohemian; and he still works for the man, specifically for “Big Oil”. The irony of our strange circumstances is not lost on either of us. It often comes up as the topic of the moment in those quietest of silences in the middle of the night when everyone but the two of us have long gone to bed on family get togethers during the holidays. He in suit and tie, hair shaved no longer than half an inch, sitting in a cushy office on the seventieth floor of some large glass and steel skysraper, with a fifty-fifty chance that one of the placard carrying “hippy activists” shouting through bullhorns and battling it out with the police downstairs just outside the lobby of his building could very well be his own brother.
Though we are both more than aware of the fact that we tend to agree on nearly all the issues, including the great harm to society and human lives lost due to corporate America, especially Big Oil companies, we choose to live and love vicariously through each other, rather than quibble over the small details that have led to and the why…. Why each of us has chosen to walk the path we are on in our individual lives. Both of us by this point in our lives long ago learned that life never rolls along smoothly or predictably. There is no “as planned”. Life is as much a result of the random events that haphazardly bounce our way as it is a result of the very nature of who we are inside and what we are willing to endure or put up with, committ to or abandon.
“Plus we are still way strapped for cash bro. It’s not like the old days when people used to buy music all the time. The business has completely changed. Younger generations dont even realize that music was something that people used to have to purchase. Theyre so accustomed to listening to it for free….”
“I know man. I don’t know how you still do it. No one buys music anymore. I don’t know how they think you all make your money or earn a living.”
“They think we get paid when they listen to music for free. As crazy as it sounds I bet it’s like anything else. The majority of the people out there who listen to and love music probably think that “everything has already been worked out, that there’s a cohesive honest structure that’s been built.” Just as no one knows that a few wealthy individuals who call themselves ‘The Bilderberg Group’ choose our presidential nominees, these same people have no clue that the musical artists they love the most don’t make any money from a million people listening to their song all day online. It never occurrs to them.”
“True that. Makes sense. Who would even guess that dude? Honestly? We just don’t think about it. We just assume you all get paid like the rest of us do. Or else why would you do it?”
“I know. Well thats why i dont blame the consumers. But I’ll tell you, it scares the crap out of Princess Little Tree. U know. It’s scary. All these big things happening in my career, but still wondering where the money is gonna come from… No weekly paycheck. Only quarterly. Or endorsement deal checks. Always hustling bigger deals with larger corporations. It’s a fools game being a rockstar. Seriously.
(1/2) Not having a weekly paycheck wuld scare the hell out ofme man. I couldnt live that way, im just not geared that way. Thats why Ive worked for the man for so long. You are tougher than I am that way dude, I am too skiddesh to go without a secure paycheck. T is too.
Yeah I know the feeling bro. But I made my decision a long time ago. And once I lived homeless all those mnths back in ’94 I realized it was a small price to pay to stay working on my art compared to working for thr man. I can honestly say that I was more miserable going to college and working at Nanas or Vacation Break than I was playing in the band and being homeless. Honestly. Less pain. Just the way I was made I guess.