The Ups and Downs of The Entertainment Industry

You’re probably wondering why I’m writing a piece about the ups and downs of the entertainment industry if I’m not even in it. Well That’s precisely the reason why. I’m an aspiring singer and author trying to make it. I used to think there was some sort of shame to tell people that I don’t have a job but that I wanted to make music my job. I don’t think of music as a job, I think of it as a passion and something I enjoy. It’d be awesome to make really big time money, but at the end of the day there’s just something about singing that I really love. It takes all of my stresses away. I can’t imagine what else I could do besides music. It’s all I think about, all I eat, sleep, dream and breathe about. I think you can say that about anyone who wishes to do anything in the arts. There are those who get it and those who sadly don’t. I used to think that you needed to be an artist to really understand and appreciate all the time and work that goes into it. I guess I stand corrected. You don’t have to be in the arts to get an artist, you just simply have to be someone who loves creativity. Some people take it as a form of inspiration and would say ‘Wow, that’s amazing that you have those goals’! A majority of the time that’s the response I get. Other times I get more negative responses and they usually come from people who are stuck up. Those people tend to idolize prefab and prepackaged and manufactured so-called talents who really only got as famous as they are because of who they know, rather than any real genuine talent that will actually be remembered in years to come.

 

Those people don’t get art. They are not artists, they are not imaginative, revolutionary, inventive or innovative. Those people are just crowd pleasers. They conform to what society tells them to do. They also tend to have really big egos. If you’re not a pretty boy with a look that markets to a fickle audience they want nothing to do with you. They don’t care about the time it really takes to really actually master and perfect your voice or any musical skills you may have. What really anoys me is that these egotists are the very people that decide whether or not you even get heard on the radio. That’s why I don’t really listen to the radio all that much anymore. Come to think of it, I haven’t heard the radio in at least 6 months with the exception of when I’m in a lyft or taxi and need something to pass the time until I get to my destination. I turn to other avenues for musical entertainment, mostly youtube and the like. I guess perhaps one of the worst anoyances I could face and do quite often seem to face is people that are out to prey on the hopes and dreams of those of us who are really trying to make it.

 

I’m sure you’ve heard it all. You have some guy who probably lives at home in his mum’s basement and claims he owns and operates a recording studio or record label, and he promises he can turn you into a bigger star than anyone that’s currently out on the radio right now. All you have to do is send them some money and they’ll make it happen. The amounts usually start small, but before long they add up and the next thing you know, you’re evicted from your place because your bank account is so in the negative that you’ll never be able to pay your rent. I’ve been there and it wasn’t fun. I’m not usually one who gets lucky, but when it came to getting that money back… well I’m still recovering from that. The consequences are that I will never trust anyone ever again. I’m going to make them do backflips and cartwheels and circus acts times a thousand before they ever earn my trust, either that or they’ll end up dead of a heart attack or stroke before I ever decide to trust anyone, which I probably still won’t. That’s just the way life goes sometimes. Sometimes you get people who are forgiving and they’ll give you second chances, but I’m not one of those people. If you lie and steal from me, you get no second chance. When you’ve been lied to and really taken advantage of, as I have when I was scammed out of a couple of thousand dollars and almost lost my home, you really have no choice. Maybe next time you’ll think twice before you question why it is that someone who’s not yet made it in the entertainment industry is talking about the pitfalls of it. Believe me, I know more than you think. Anyway, I guess it’s back to the drawing board.

 

As I continue trying to recover from the financial blunder, and trust me, 6 grand might seem small to you, but it’s like a million bucks to me. I’ve always lived a frugal life. In fact even if I were to actually come into huge amounts of wealth I would still live frugally. You probably don’t believe me, all I can say is just you wait and see. I’m the kind of person who says what they mean and mean what they say. So as all of this is going on, it’s back to trying to find gigs and doing some auditions. One of those auditions was for a choir. I made it into the choir as a tenor. The only thing is I’ve not gone to any of the rehearsals. I’ve loads of insecurities with myself. It was a long time since I’d been in any sort of choir. The last time I was in a choir was back in high school and I absolutely hated everything about it, from the choir teacher who tried to basically categorize what my voice type was as if she knew my strengths more than my own self, down to the fact that she made it very obvious she never really liked me. This was because she taught piano as well, and I did everything by ear since I didn’t know how to read sheet music. And of course she didn’t like it, she yelled at me and told me I would never make it as a singer because blind people will never make it in the music industry. How are you supposed to read braille sheet music with one hand and play piano with two hands? Last time I checked, humans only had two hands, not three! Anyway, so the choir director at this last audition I went to was really sweet, as was everyone else in the choir. But ultimately it was past traumas of being in music classes in high school, as well as those insecurities resulting from those negative experiences that seem to keep me from going to rehearsals. I guess I’m going to need some massive therapeutic intervention or something. Maybe I need shock therapy. Maybe I’ll need hypnosis, maybe I need to see a doctor. But not just any doctor, a doctor that really knows how to treat trauma. If you know of any, give me a call and let’s talk. That’s all I have so far, but I’m pretty sure I’ll think of plenty more things to write about soon so keep it locked here.

Publishing Content In The Newspaper Without Your Permission

I called a friend up on the phone and both he and I were talking about trauma. One of the things that I brought up was the fact that often times people do certain things to us and they don’t care about how it makes us feel. One of my biggest sore spots is people’s complete disregard for the right to privacy. As someone who is apart of the LGBT community, issues like this come up very frequently. As LGBT people, we’ve come a long way in history. For some despicable reason that for the life of me I will never comprehend, LGBT people have been met with violence, disownment and murder. Yes I said it, murder. Look up the case of Matthew Shepard. He was murdered in 1999 just for being gay. That shouldn’t have happened and thank God we got the government involved to insure that LGBT people have equal protections under the law. Now I know what you’re thinking, why did the government have to get involved for changes to happen? Why did we have to take marriage equality to the highest courts of this land when it didn’t need to go that far? You’re absolutely right, it didn’t have to go that far, but we had no choice because for too long, we were treated and thought of as second class citizens. We tried playing nice but the states wouldn’t listen, so we took it to the next level.

 

If states wouldn’t listen to us, the courts will, and they did. Because of our tireless efforts to fight for equality, we now are allowed to marry. How cool is that! But the fight’s not over, as there’s still quite a bit of work to do. Even though we’ve come a long way from where we used to be, there’s still the matter of the right to privacy. Everyone in this country deserves the right to privacy as it’s written in the constitution, at least it should be anyways. If it’s not yet written in the constitution then it needs to be! Let’s say for example you get abused at school. You’re bullied relentlessly by students and teachers because of your disability. On top of that, you’re LGBT. Being LgBT is one thing, but add a disability on top of that and you’ve a whole new can of worms. It’s graduation day but you don’t go to the ceremony. Why would you go to a ceremony to be in a stadium of a whole bunch of people who’ve bullied you? Since you’ve chosen not to go to the ceremony, you either elect to pick up the diploma or have it mailed to you. Unbeknownst to you, you find out that your name was published in the local newspaper and you didn’t give permission for it. You call or email your local newspaper and ask for your name to be removed from the publication, and they say no because it’s already been moved to the archives. What do you do? What can you do as someone who not only didn’t give consent to have their name published and it happened anyway, then when you ask politely for the newspaper to edit your name out of it, they tell you that even if you didn’t give permission to be published they can do whatever they want? That is a violation of privacy!

 

Let’s talk about name changes. In the United States you’re allowed to change your name to whatever you want for any reason, unless of course it’s not to evade law enforcement or a debt, or to cause confusion or to commit a crime or fraud. Depending on the crime you’ve committed you might not be allowed to change your name, and if the court suspects that you’re changing your name to commit fraud or to avoid law enforcement your petition will be denied. But what if you’re just an average innocent person? What if you’re LGBT or have been a victim of abuse and harassment? What if you want a fresh start in life to be the you that you knew you were always meant to be? I guess you could go about it in a few different ways depending on how hard you’re willing to work. You gotta fight for your dreams and fight for your rights and you also have to fight for your identity. If you’re in a radically conservative part of the country, your first step would probably be to move out of that state and go some place more liberal where it’s guaranteed that nobody knows your name. You’re starting from scratch. No one knows you from a hole in the wall, you get the picture. Think of all of the imigrants that come to America or the UK from their original life of poverty and struggle. It’s pretty much the same concept, you want a brand new start with a brand new life and a brand new you. In most states, changing your name is a pretty straight forward process, but in many states you are required to publish your intent to change your name in the newspaper. In Oregon and Washington State you’re not required to publish your name in the paper, but it is still public record as you’re required to post it on the courthouse bulletin board. There’s probably a way to get around it by filling out a motion. If you are LGBT, particularly transgender, it might specifically be in your best interest to keep it confidential especially if you’ve been the victim of abuse, or you’re in fear of being harassed.

 

It’s been my experience that whenever I’ve dealt with the courts particularly in Colorado, they’ve been quite friendly to me. Colorado is a liberal state and they tend to be compassionate when it comes to abuse victims and LGBT people. In Colorado and other states, you are required to publish your intent to change your name in the newspaper. This is put into place so that criminals can’t simply run off without paying debts that they’ve made under their previous names. Since that didn’t apply to me, I was granted a name change without having to publicize it. I still had to swear under oath that I wasn’t changing my name to avoid debts or to commit a crime, and of course I was honest when I said that I had no malicious intent by it, and the judge promptly granted my request and even sealed the entire case so it could never be accessed again. In the case of a school graduation publication, I believe that publication should only be done if permission is granted by the student. If not granted, then the student’s name shall not appear. If it still appears and the student wants their name removed, then the newspaper must oblige. If the newspaper refuses, then legal action must be taken. This is about a person’s right to privacy and a right to safety. My right to be safe and my right to privacy is more important than freedom of the press.