Music and comedy are two of my favourite things in the world, so it’s not a surprise that they both go hand in hand. When you think about it, music and comedy aren’t all that different. Yes there are many styles and genres, but the root is the same. We’re basically all trying to say “What the hell is going on here, what is this life?” except that it comes out different each time because we all have a different set of eyes.
Both of the aforementioned forms of artistic expression also make it easier to talk about taboos. When done well, they can be effective tools for getting your point across. For example, The Offspring have this song called “Cool to Hate” that makes a point about the macho culture played out by some members of our society. At first glance, one might think the song is literally saying that it’s cool to hate. But when you think about it, the artists are sarcastically mocking an attitude that is usually a manifestation of indecision and insecurity that causes affected people to hate on everything. Normally it’s tough to have conversations about these kinds of topics because there is a lot of pain/hurt associated with them. People would get riled up quick. However, most people tend to avoid confrontation, and that’s where music and comedy step in. Luckily, we have these beautiful modes of non-confrontational communication.
Another great example, taken from comedy this time, is an excerpt from Joe Rogan’s recent comedy special “Triggered”. In his act, he uses comedic appeal in order to set the stage for statements that “punch up” to larger issues such as religion. There’s a good reason people avoid topics like religion at the dinner table. People die over these things, it’s no joke. However, when the setting is right, you can say what needs to be said. Rogan references an observation about cults and religions which states that the only difference between them is that in religions, the guy who made it up is now dead. He sets the stage by first pointing out the ridiculousness of the Church of Scientologists before making his point about religion in general. It just gives another perspective about “what is life” and how there are many ways to try to explain it. Sometimes, our opinions and beliefs can be pretty damn funny. And somehow if you’re making people laugh (or dance to the beat), it’s easier to get through to them.