I found myself this morning having an argument over Glee. My sparring partner stated pretty emphatically that:

“If you genuinely love #Glee there’s a good chance I will never take one of your musical opinions seriously” and quickly following it up with “Heck, if you genuinely love #Glee there’s a good chance I will suspect you seriously hate music. #ThatShowIsPureEvil”

Well, I guess then, I hate music.

Glee is a show that is purely a guilty pleasure for me. And at the core, I think it’s got a good message, even if it suffers from a serious lack of linear story telling and some outlandish plots. But it’s the music that has all of my musical connections in an uproar.

The consensus among my snobbier music friends is that Glee is downright awful.

But I totally disagree. Glee is fun and nothing more.

If you’re comparing Glee to say Bowie, your fallacy is that it’s an apples to oranges comparison. I see Glee standing up next to your high school musical. Not High School Music, but that play you saw in high school that made you fall in love with theater. For me it was seeing Pirates of Penzance. If I were to go back and look at the production of the show, I might be horrified at how truly terrible it was. However, it made me LOVE going to the theater. And I’ve since seen it done as the traditional opera. OPERA! Who would have thought I’d ever go to the opera?

But that’s what those sort of early experiences do. It exposes people to things, music, lifestyles, cultures, that you wouldn’t otherwise have an opportunity to learn about. I put Glee in that category. Is this the best music around? Certainly not. Is it fun? Yes. Does it encourage people to expand their musical tastes? Yeah. I’ve never been one for Lady Gaga, but after last night’s episode where they covered “Born this Way” I might be willing to give her a second shot.

I sort of compare this situation with people who are exceptionally picky about what their children read. If it’s not quality, it’s not worth reading. Or at least that’s the sentiment for some. While I don’t enjoy vampire stories or books about boy wizards, you cannot deny the impact it has had on students to pick up books. So maybe they read a Harry Potter book and it encourages them to pick up more fantasy books and then on to sci-fi. And eventually they find themselves reading Asimov and Gaiman and Sagan and Vonngeut. But they had to start somewhere, right?

If watching Glee encourages someone to seek out the Cee-Lo (edited) song “Forget You” and opts to go find out more about him and ends up with Gnarls Barkley, they could easily go from Gnarls Barkley to DangerMouse to JayZ to, well, you get the point.

I think everyone has a gateway band that helped them get in to good music. If Glee does that for someone, why crap on it?


About indie librarian

a recently MLS librarian's observations
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