Where was I? Oh yes, Bob Dylan. I’m going to use him and some other bits to prove that culture just isn’t pulling its weight anymore. I had some great things I wanted to say about Bob Dylan yesterday and now I’ve forgotten most of them. I was also going to compare him to Ed Sheeran but only one of them would come out a winner. One is a master, an innovator and wordsmith of rare genius and should be allowed to do pretty much whatever he wants for the rest of his life as he has already enriched the world many times over. The other is Ed Sheeran.
To give you evidence of just how lame the record industry is and how remarkably magnolia Ed Sheeran is let’s look at some hard facts. Bob Dylan released his first album in 1962 at the age of 21 having spent a considerable chunk of his time playing all over the place. Over the next 6 years he released 8 albums, all good, at least 4 of which are rightly considered peaks in the history of modern recorded music.
Ed Sheeran started recording in 2011 when he was 20, which is a good start, but since then he has released just 3 albums. These might have gone down well with teenage girls (and a few confused men) and people with limited musical taste, and have admittedly sold squillions, but have all the artistic value of an aardvark fart. Having said all that Ed has been in Bridget Jones’ Baby and Game of Thrones and that’s the real mark of a cultural icon. No, it really is these days, and please don’t tell me that doesn’t make you feel sad inside.
History will be the best judge but if you like Ed Sheeran and you ever feel like doing me a favour then please stop buying his records. The empty husk that is today’s excuse for entertainment can be seen splashed everywhere. Yesterday ‘the wife’ and I were slothy and settled in to watch two films instead of one. The first was ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’. The Harry Potter world in any format makes me want to stick my head in a tiger’s mouth and a finger up its arse, but ‘Fantastic Beasts’ turned out to be marginally entertaining. It even got me slightly weepy at the end but these days I cry at almost anything for one reason or another. Mind you if you took the endless CGI out of ‘Fantastic Beasts’ you’d just be left with a green screen and Eddie Redmayne sporting that daft ‘I’m having a minor stroke’ expression on his pretty little face.
The other film was the Star Wars spin off thingy – ‘Rogue One’, which I was quite keen to give a go. If you haven’t seen it and, like me, only have a modest love of all things Star Wars then my advice is simple. Don’t bother. Just don’t fucking bother because at some stage you’ll really miss the time you wasted on it. Such a shame, there was a point where I had convinced myself it would never actually end and that I was in a strange film version of locked-in syndrome. The only upside was that it gave ‘the wife’ and I a chance to round on it like a pair of feral dogs and slag it off for the rest of the evening.
Anyway this lot seems to have taken me ages, doesn’t really have a point and isn’t particularly well written but it’s getting posted regardless because now that I’m doing a journalism course I need to get used to publishing random crap. And I can also take some consolation from the fact no-one else seems to making any effort anymore. But getting paid much better for it.
G B Hewitt 15.4.2017