We are beautiful no matter what they say
When hordes of artists come together to support a cause, people’s eyes and ears come to attention. Bob Geldof and his Band and Live Aid productions come to mind, as does the USA for Africa project. Many others have followed including a handful of soon to be released tsunami benefit compilations. But one has to ask himself, just what does pop music have to do with Ethiopia, tsunamis, or other humanitarian causes. The answer is not much other than people with means and some semblance of money drawing ability being able to use that talent to help. So what kind of benefit album has more to do with the world of pop music? That questioned has been answered with Love Rocks.
Pop music of all genres has always revolved around the subject of love. Whether the songs are a celebration of love or the tragedy of it, the subject is the most powerful and prolific in modern music. Love is the most inspiring feeling of all, moving painters to create brilliant works of art, historical figures to kill or conquer, poets to string words and sounds together, and pop artists to sing songs. What’s my point? That love should be celebrated. One might think that it already is and quite a bunch, but that is not always the case. The truth is there is a lot of love in this world that is still repressed, disparaged, and kept hidden for fear of reprisal. Thus, the good people at the Human Rights Campaign got two CD’s worth of artists together to celebrate `love between two people regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.’
If you’re a regular Treble reader, you’ll notice that the CD in question is not the norm for this site, mainly because of the styles of music involved. I don’t think Treble has reviewed a single artist involved in the making of this project. But there really is something for everyone on this collection. Featuring artists ranging from Christina Aguilera and Pink to Nada Surf and BT, from the Dixie Chicks and Emmylou Harris to Carole King and Mandy Moore, Love Rocks contains thirty-two songs about love. This might not have been a CD that I would have bought in a record shop, but I would have gladly donated to the HRC to support their works and their message, that love of all kinds should be celebrated. Don’t think of it as a CD purchase, but rather as a bonus gift for doing something worthwhile.
The centerpiece of the collection, if there really is one, is the powerful new song by Melissa Etheridge called “Giant.” Etheridge has been on fire lately, from her bald and balls-out performance of “Piece of My Heart” by Janis Joplin, with a little help from Joss Stone, this coming after treatment for cancer, to this explosion of an anthemic song. Not only does it rock harder than Billy Squier, but it is strong, confident, and has a `take no prisoners’ stance. (If only the Democrats had fostered this attitude). Take these lyrics for instance:
You tried to hold us down
You tried to hold us back
You tried to make us wrong
You tried to make us crack.
I am a giant
And you will not make me crawl
And you will not make me crawl
I am not alone
Winds of change’ll blow
And the walls come tumbling down
Another standout representative is one that has been celebrated already and practically adopted by the homosexual community, rightly so, which is Christina Aguilera’s (Linda Perry written) song “Beautiful.” If nothing else, these songs should be examples of the strong feelings held by a lot of people in this country, myself included, who do not want to see this `government’ making any kind of laws regulating what `marriage’ is or isn’t. Hopefully, some of the songs on this compilation can change some minds. And although it might sound a little cheesy, these artists show that love does indeed rock.
Various Artists- Being Out Rocks
Various Artists- Utopia
USA for Africa- We Are the World