Stop Getting Teardrops on Your Guitars

Why is so much music depressing? “It’s your gradual descent into a life you never meant/It’s the slow fade of love,” are the inspirational words pumping out of my speakers right now (thanks for the sunny message, Rilo Kiley!). I mean, to be fair, it is my music, but Genius picked it, not me.

Seriously, though, 99.99(99999)% of the music I listen to seems to be sad. And I am a happy person. I am also kind of like a sponge, in that I soak up water and people use me to wash their dishes. No, just kidding, I’m a washcloth. (What I really meant is that I basically conform to the mood of whatever is around me, automatically, by accident. Not other people–fuck y’all, I’m still gonna be happy no matter what–but sad movies and music equal sad Wild Hearts.)

Maybe I am just a freak, and this doesn’t happen to anyone else. But if it does, then why can’t more music be happy? And I know what everyone is going to say:

  1. “People are expressing themselves through music, and people are sad.” Guess what, get the fuck over yourself. Your boyfriend dumped you and instead of moving on and sleeping with his hot friend, you wrote a four-page poem about it. That’s even more depressing than your lyrics.
  2. “There is plenty of happy music, and you’re just not listening to it!” Okay, sometimes, I want to listen to the kind of music I like (read: fun, interesting indie-ish music, like Basia Bulat and Minus the Bear, rather than radio tunes, which are also good but not exactly hanging-out jams por moi). And I’m not saying indie artists (what does that even MEAN?) don’t have happy songs, ’cause they totally do. But they are usually sandwiched between 973 depressing songs.

So. Being the proactive person I am, I didn’t just blather all this to complain. Oh, no. (Plus, I figure, some sick freaks–probably the same sorts of people who save their toenail clippings and watch A Walk to Remember with a straight face–actually like sad music, and I don’t want to hate on them. Much.) See, I came up with a solution.

How to Make Indie Music Artists Happy So They Write a Little More Happy Music (Ideally at Least 50% Happy On Each CD, Because Come On)

— Give them all puppies. Literally no one is sad around a puppy. If you just invented a time machine only to realize it can only go back to Holocaust-era Germany and never come back, and your life’s work is wasted on time-traveling-trips to Hitlerville, a puppy will cheer you up.

–Give them sex. FUN sex! Connor Oberst (I probably spelled his name wrong; I usually do, but I’m not going to Google it because I don’t care) is a sad motherfucker and he gets it in with every bright-eyed (ha!) girl who comes around. Clearly, they all suck in bed, or Connor (Conner? Konner? NGJSNG?) might stop writing slush about hot knives (although I do love that song). So maybe give them either a really good time, or pay someone to hop on that with pizazz and lots of smiling.

–Win the lottery and buy out an amusement park for the day; take them there. (If you don’t win the lotto, the lines and screaming children and annoying people saying, “I CAN GUESS YOUR AGE REALLY I CAN I SWEAR I CAN DO IT YOU’RE 15 RIGHT OH NO I WAS WRONG HAVE A GIANT FROG” will just depress them even more. Maybe that’s what happened with Pink Floyd.)

That’s all I’ve got. I didn’t really think it through, because I was pretty sure the puppy thing would work right out the gate. Or you could just listen to all the depressing stuff and pretend that it’s happy instead, like that girl who can’t take a hint and takes, “We need a break,” to mean, “He wants to take a break so he can go engagement-ring shopping in secret!” He never means that, honey. Go write a song about it, maybe?


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Bad Crap
    Aug 15, 2011 @ 00:43:44

    I agree with you, a lot of it is. You should check out our music, it’s mostly just fun and upbeat. We’re a little different.


  2. A sad-sap writer of songs
    Aug 16, 2011 @ 07:20:21

    As someone who writes a lot of music, it just isn’t as inspiring to write when you are happy. When you are happy, you want to go outside and do things, have friends and have fun. When you are feeling depressed or angry, you want to be alone and your guitar becomes your best friend, the only way you can get those feelings out without having to explain them or make excuses for yourself. I think it is just natural that music leans that way because of what often inspires people to write it.

    That said, there is a lot of happy indie music. Have you tried out Matt & Kim, Super Furry Animals, Legs Like Tree Trunks, LCD Soundsystem or MGMT to start?

    Also, it’s Conor. Just one N.


    • thewildhearts
      Aug 16, 2011 @ 15:49:21

      I’m all over MGMT like white on rice; “Kids” may be the best song of all time.
      Yup, I just checked, and it’s the best song of all time (okay, top ten).


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