Where’s the harm in adoration?

We’ve had Beatlemania, Bieber Fever and now One Direction infection, but before you flail me for mentioning the great Beatles in the same breath as manufactured pop, hear me out.

The Beatles took the world by storm some fifty years ago in scenes of which the likes had never been seen before. Young girls fainted, unsolicited marriage proposals were commonplace and they were mobbed wherever they went. In the following decades boy bands have continued to do the same. In the 70s we had The Bay City Rollers, the 80s brought us New Kids on the Block and the 90s saw the success of the Backstreet Boys. Young girls swooned over Take That in the 00s and now we have One Direction to contend with, so quite simply, we’ve seen it all before. Some will argue that The Beatles were infinitely more talented than all those who followed, yet Decca Records passed on signing them, so talent isn’t the only thing which makes a band successful. They really do need to have the X factor, whatever that may be.

We seem to have forgotten the joy of being a teenager, the feeling of thinking you’ll die if you don’t get to that concert, see them on the television and hear their latest song on the radio. How many dreamed of marrying David Cassidy or swooned over Doris Day? Yet now we’re a little bit older and wiser, we dismiss these young bands and the ‘silly girls’ who would follow them to the ends of the earth.

I am guilty of being dismissive of current pop bands and music. There is the constant battle when in the car with my son about what radio station is being played. I simply don’t understand why he’s not interested in Michael Buble, or how he can fail to hear the melody in the music of Adele. The doof doof of the bands he likes to listen to give me a headache and I struggle to drown them out.  Just writing this I chuckle as I’m reminded of the very same arguments I had with my mum.

Then there’s the other side of what teenagers listen to. Every now and again a ‘song’ will come on the radio and the language and blatant sexual nature of the lyrics is just appalling.  Is this more acceptable than a manufactured band that minds their P’s and Q’s?

And for me this is where One Direction and their ilk have won me over. OK, so they don’t write their own songs, possibly can’t play an instrument, and their dancing amounts to a little spin on stage now and again. But they sing about love, and being beautiful inside and meeting the one person that you simply can’t live without. And they do it without littering the lyrics with the ‘f’ word.

If you don’t get the appeal of such bands then perhaps you’ve simply forgotten what it’s like to be young.

 

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