...with Battle of the Bands results!
|Mr Zombie (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Back in May, Robin at Your Daily Dose got me to thinking about issues she brought up in a post that you can find here. In my comment responding to her post I contemplated some of the metaphorical implications regarding the popularity of the zombie genres found so often in modern culture. Thinking that perhaps my ponderings might make for an interesting blog post, I tucked away my thoughts in my idea file to be pulled out later. My recent blog series about death and zombies seemed to be a good place to finally bring these ideas out as a conclusion to that series.
Over the past few posts on Tossing It Out, as well as a post at my memoir blog Wrote By Rote, I've been discussing the topics of death and zombies partly in relation to the Halloween season, but primarily to call attention to my Battle of the Bands installment that featured the song "When I'm Dead and Gone". I'll be getting to the winner of the BOTB contest shortly, but first I want to present my theory about our increasing societal obsession with zombies.
This topic has been addressed by many others. Andrew Leon directed me to one of his own posts, "Zombies: A Cultural Metaphor" from a few years ago at his blog Strange Pegs. In short, Andrew offers the concept that our fascination and fear of zombies is related to issues regarding the influence of technology, corporations, and government on our society. You might want to go back and read his post to get the full story behind his theory.
Other theories I've found have suggested that the zombie metaphor extends to viruses, contagion, human isolation, paranoia, and the general fears that confront us. The Ebola Virus crisis has probably made others beside myself think about a future epidemic unlike any we've seen previously that could include reanimated corpses. Farfetched? Probably, but it makes for a good scary story.
Here is what came to my mind as I was commenting on Robin's previously mentioned blog post:
Regarding hope vs purpose. Personally I think internally hope is the force that drives any of us. Without hope we merely act on autopilot to get the days work done with nothing more to look forward to. Goals are the result of hope and the hope provides more meaning to the purpose.
From the outside though, as far as other people are concerned, the purpose is mainly what matters. Our hope may spread to others around us and inspire them, but on the whole the people we deal with are mainly interested in the purpose we serve.
The burger flipper may hope toward vacation time or a college degree and the purpose of the job is to get them to their goal, but the job is not their ultimate purpose. The guy waiting for his burger hopes that his burger is fixed right and the flipper has no purpose to him other to get his burger done.
Maybe a lot of the zombie stories metaphorically represent a world that increasingly consists of people who are losing hope and the burning internal desire to find ultimate purpose only to become hopeless empty shells merely left with the purpose to survive.
To take this thinking a step further I sense that many people today have a spiritual disconnect and rely on outside forces such as governmental or societal support. They are burdened with the desire to have more and do more which in turn leads to enslavement of debt, jobs they don't like, and a general lack of direction about where they are going in this life. Consequently they plod lifelessly from one day to the next from job to the shopping mall to do whatever else everyone else is doing. We all wait, stand in lines, and face frequent let-downs in our lives. What we do with these experiences and how we react to everything we encounter determines the amount of actual life we have burning within us. Some people don't take it so well and spend time complaining and just following the rest of the crowds who have little or no idea what's coming next.
There is certainly more that can be added to all this but I must move on to BOTB results.
Battle of the Bands: The Outcome
What I thought was going to be an essentially uneventful BOTB contest turned out to be a heated horse race. There were surprises like those voters who I thought would surely know the original version of "When I'm Dead and Gone" by McGuinness Flint who did not know the song. Maybe they just didn't remember it since it's a song that is not often played anywhere these days. A few of you knew the song but most did not.
As I somewhat expected in the case of those who did not know the song or the original artist several cast their votes based on the greater familiarity of Def Leppard. I was surprised that some voters did not like the song as I find it to be catchy and quite entertaining, an opinion shared by at least a third of the voters. But like I say it was a horse race all the way. As I read the comments and tallied the votes I could almost hear the sports announcer detailing the back and forth nature of the contest. This was one of my craziest BOTB posts ever as far as close voting goes.
My preferred version is the original by McGuinness Flint for the same reasons cited by some of you. The instrumentation, especially the mandolin and the solid drum backing, as well as the vocals give the song a better sound to my ears than the version by Def Leppard. Those hard rockin' Def boys did a fine job with the cover and it's grown on me through subsequent listenings, but I don't think they could ever surpass McGuinness Flint for my taste. I love this song--it's a catchy foot-tapping memorable romp and I can't understand why anyone wouldn't like it. But some of you didn't as indicated in your voting.
So how did my vote affect the outcome of the Battle? It almost puts McGuinness Flint in a tie with Def Leppard.
The Final Tally
McGuinness Flint 13
Def Leppard 14
The next Battle of the Bands posts will come on Saturday November 15th and I've got what will be one of my favorite matches so far. It's a pop song from a 1969 concept album by a hugely popular artist whose career spanned over half of the 20th century. The seemingly unlikely competitor is a very eclectic band that came together in the early 90's and is still active today. Be sure to join me for this one and I don't want to hear anyone say they don't like this coming song pick. How could you not like this song? Anyway, be here and find out for yourself.
Does my zombie theory hold credence in your estimation? What is your own opinion as to why zombies are so fascinating to so many? Do you know what my blog post title is derived from?