Music is one of the Great Britain’s most marvelous contributions to the world, despite the tendency of musical movements over the last four decades to spawn cultures that appear to morally damage the social norms, especially on the youth. Much of the phenomenon can be attributed to the advent and development of television as a medium of communication, for television has vastly catapulted the career of popular musicians to a whole new level. In a similar magnitude, cinema has also projected negative implications on how common people treat celebrities.
Together with television, cinema has dehumanized celebrities in such a way that society and culture, particularly in the west, have eventually nurtured television viewers with mindless conformity to the media as well as a fully developed system of glorifying celebrities and their radical behavior. The tremors of broadcast media and cinema have produced the concept of superficiality and prejudice as a basis for popularity. It is quite evident on how movie stars, musicians, athletes, and commercial models are treated in restaurants and other public places.
The motion picture A Hard Day’s Night, for instance, exemplifies and tackles the backlash of the demeaning nature of popularity as felt by celebrities in a personal level since they themselves feel the luxury of a normal life gradually departing from them. The context of the film is inclined on the idea that the visual elements provided by cinema and television create a following of a particular artist or group of artists based on appearance and not on talent.
In analysis of the growing problem, Kevin Donnelly’s British Film Music and Musicals emphasizes the phenomenon of how A Hard Day’s Night became the antidote to the venom brought about by cinema and television’s visuals in such a way that the focus is more on The Beatles’ music as the storyteller instead of the plot or the cast themselves (Donnelly, 2007). Contrary to other films involving music artists such as the legendary Elvis Presley who has been the guinea pig of film makers who did nothing but to exploit his popularity in film.
Donnelly writes that the film virtually connects viewers to the band through the musical score which goes hand in hand with the situation and emotions that the film’s scenes raise (2007). The songs suggest how the Beatles scorn about the fringe benefits of popularity while dealing with the punishing nature of their duties such as recording and touring. The virtual contact also happens as the motion picture shares the band’s brutal torments of having a celebrity life while sacrificing their personal goals and interests.
The visual technologies of cinema and film indeed contribute to the actuality that such mediums of communication make deities out of celebrities. In this sense, A Hard Day’s Night represents and reflects the the star-making machinery around The Beatles in such a way that it documents of The Beatles’ misadventures in the United States during the peak of their career. The band’s grasp with commercial success were represented through encounters of pursuit by law enforcers and a horde of fans as well as their appearances on press conferences, endeavors with their agents, and hotel life (Balio, 1987).
Therefore, Such circumstances are quite similar to the cases of modern celebrities being sighted and chased on public places or being arrested for driving fast and under the influence of psychoactive substances. A Hard Day’s Night, meanwhile celebrates the band’s stardom in a different manner, by highlighting the band’s versatility as musicians since part of the film captures the band’s latest compositions at the time, being played during practice sessions, live performances, and informal set-ups (Balio, 1987).
The film’s distinct approach to the topic subjects the tendency of visuals such as film and television as career boosters in such a way that the showcase of the band’s talent through live performances are shown, unlike traditional musician oriented films which make use of the artist’s recorded material. In a corresponding approach, A Hard Day’s Night together with the film and television industry serve as a mockery of the star-making machinery around The Beatles as well as other celebrities and popular personalities, primarily because music is an art form which stimulates appreciation through hearing.
As such, the dedicated medium of communication for expressing the art of music and recording artists is supposed to be the radio, not television, film, and definitely not print. The motion picture also insults the The Beatles as artists by humorously tackling the problem of pop fame, which the band members experience, through a medium that caused such a plague in the first place (Glynn, 2005).
In addition, the polluting nature of television and cinema has once again made its presence felt as the visuals have proven to be useful aids in exploiting artists and promoting the developed system of idolizing celebrities, which is in this case happens to be The Beatles. Furthermore, the visuals provided by television and film entombs true musical talent by taking away the recording artists’ musical credibility (Frith, 2002). Simon Frith (2002) however implies that rock is to be understood as a television product.
The key elements and features of television and film, for Frith, have configured the manner of how the audience perceive music and musicians. Simon Frith writes that television has become largely responsible in the field of star-making for the reason that television with its emphasis on close-ups of the performer and musical virtuosity, particular types of staging and spectacle has added flavor to musicians as celebrated public figures (2002).
Frith also adds that the emergeance of music networks such as Music Television together with several music related television programs such as Top of the Pops have also aided artists in terms of promotion which affects components of stardom such as record sales and chart ratings (Frith, 2002). The advent of technology has indeed influenced the the norms and standards for treatment of celebrities.
Visuals, in an unimaginable, have added spice to musicians as attractions to the public eye, with it, the innovation of promotion for recording artists have revolutionized. Regardless if the changes brought about by the television and motion picture industry to the public status of career musicians have positive or negative undertones, the bottom-line still goes down to a particular point, change. A change that has been felt almost half a century after it has long been innovated and practiced.
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