Wednesday, 29 June 2016

The Music in the Charts is Rubbish

What happened to music? Or more specifically, what happened to the music in the charts? Every time I turn on Radio1, they are always playing the same sort of song which usually has some singer who can't really sing going on about sex or having big buttocks or something. And the beat and tune of the song nearly always sounds generic and repetitive.

And furthermore, some people seem to actually like or in some cases love this type of music. It really does amaze me how some people can listen to artists like Justin Beiber, Ariana Grande, Nikki Minage, Nick Jonas or Drake without their ears physically feeling as sore as a thousand blisters.

And the sad thing about this is that I know these artists because they have got famous and are now probably stinking rich. Why have they got famous? Because people with bad music taste actually listen to their music. Do these people not know about other artists who are so much better? Or do they just want to be 'cool' and listen to these artists because they seem to be what we should be listening to because they are on Radio 1 and in the charts?
Today's chart music...

As the picture above demonstrates, the current music in the charts is all a bit 'samey'; they all have the generic beat and the same sort of lyrics... nothing about these songs makes me want to listen to them. I know all music in the charts isn't bad. Some is OK and in some rare cases I actually end up liking a song in the charts. I tend to particularly enjoy rock music but unfortunately for me there's not a lot of rock music being played on mainstream radio or in the charts. I never hear any good guitar riffs on Radio 1. But obviously, this is probably because the mainstream radios and i.e. MTV focus mainly on pop music because as the name suggests, it is popular and current. There are many great current rock songs out there but they are not as popular because it's simply not pop.

The thing that annoys me the most is the songs which have lyrics so rubbish they could have been written by a toddler. The ones where the singer who can't really sing repeats a single word over and over, for example, the repeating of the word 'baby' or 'oooh' if that is even a word. And the songs that don't have the usual repetitiveness have lyrics that sexualize young girls or talk about sexual relationships, drugs or body image. It used to be the case that most music in the charts were about world peace etc or had lyrics which were more abstract and thought- provoking. Maybe most of my generation is just stupid so they listen to songs with stupid lyrics they don't have to try and understand.

It just seems that the mainstream music is only made by artists who want more money. I think the popular music should be music with meaning, good singing, good tunes and the artists behind the music should be people who are passionate and create music because they purely enjoy making music. I simply think that the music outside the charts is better than the music in the charts.

What sort of music do you listen to? Also, what is your opinion on the music in the charts? Let me know in the comments.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

The Truth About GCSEs

The dreaded GCSE exam hall

Weeks and weeks of teachers telling us that GCSEs are the most important thing ever in our lives, scaring students into thinking that if you didn't get good grades then you would probably find yourself with a future career working full time at MacDonald's, living in a squalid flat with nothing but a conscious that constantly screams at you 'WHY DID YOU NOT GET BETTER GCSE GRADES?'. The teachers also told us that the exams themselves would be extremely horrific and stressful.

GCSEs aren't that stressful
After completing my exams, I can say that they aren't that bad and they aren't that stressful. They are only stressful if you make them stressful. And they certainly are not scary or horrific because when you think about it, there's nothing scary about sitting at a desk in a hall writing words on a bit of paper. Yet again, the teachers exaggerated things. Two whole years of my life making notes for a few exams which are all over in a few weeks. Now they are officially over, I am left with a pile of notes I'm never going to look at again and a feeling that all that work might not have been worth it. Are GCSEs really that important? They may be important in the short term to either get into sixth form or college or maybe to get your first job but in the long term, employers and universities are only really going to look at your A level grades. You could possibly argue that if you do well in your GCSEs then you will do well in your A levels and although this is likely, it's not always the case. So GCSEs are really just the launching pad into Sixth Form and then University? Perhaps they are. Most universities will look for at least Cs in GCSE English, Maths and perhaps Science. So all you need is a few Cs in GCSE and your sorted? This may well be the case (unless you wish to go to Oxford or Cambridge). But of course, it always helps to have a few As and A*s to improve your chances.

GCSEs are not everything
If you really think about it though, many people have got happily through life and got successful jobs with nothing but charm, a good sense of humour and a good character. Many famous/ successful people in today's society didn't get good grades at GCSE. They probably just worked really hard at the thing they loved and became really good at it. They also probably had a clear career goal and knew what it is they wanted to do when they were older. So in order to really do well in life you probably need a clear career goal and you need to be a hard worker. GCSEs are not everything. They are just a starting point really and if you do disastrous in them then you can realize you made a mistake and work hard to make up for it or try and do much better at A levels. So to make the message simpler because I'm not sure how well this all translates: Good GCSEs help but they are not that important. They are not the be all end all.

You can only do your best
After completing my GCSEs I feel as if I have tried my best although I think I could have revised perhaps slightly more. I have done all I can now though and my fate is in the hands of the examiners who are probably crouched miserably over my exams, marking them now. I have a burning desire to see my GCSE grades in this very moment but unfortunately we all just have to wait until August which I think is too far away. On results day, I will most probably just open the envelope in the corner of the room hoping for the best whilst the hall turns into an eruption of shouts and cries of joy or pain as people go down on their knees as they see their GCSE grades on paper for the first time. It's a bit weird when you think about it isn't it? All that work for a few letters on a bit of paper. It's simply absurd but as I've said before in this post, GCSEs do matter to some extent but they are not everything... so just remember that if you are disappointed with your results in August.

I know that a few of my friends are currently stressing about how they need As and A*s... it's not worth the stress though because you've done all you can. I hate people who stress and say 'What if I don't get all A*s?' I mean come on! Just enjoy your holidays for goodness sake!

A quick few words from my classmates about what they had to say about GCSEs:

"GCSEs were stressful. All that revision and pressure to do well got a bit too much for me I think"
So some people did find them stressful... but then again this person really wanted all A*s.

"GCSEs were the easiest thing EVER!" 
Ok... A*s for you then.

"I messed up my GCSEs" 
Oh dear... don't worry though, GCSEs aren't everything.

"GCSEs were easier than I thought they would be. Everyone was saying they would be bloody awful but they weren't" 
Exactly my thoughts as well.

"They were OK I guess. Not too bad. I think I should have revised more though because I did procrastinate a lot"
See, they are not that bad after all. Just try not to procrastinate...

"I can't believe that's it. GCSEs are over! It feels great to be freeeeee! Bring on the Summer!"
That's right. Bring on the Summer!

How do you think your GCSEs went? Were GCSEs really that bad? I would love to hear from you so just leave a comment.

To all of you who have just finished your GCSEs (or any exams for that matter), I hope you have a brilliantly tremendous summer holiday and that you make the most of it!

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Distractions Everywhere

Phones... laptops... TV... ring... ring...beep...beep...beep.

There's just so much going on in this modern world. Everywhere we look there is a distraction. Everywhere we go there are people glued to their phones, not looking at the world around them but instead looking at a tiny screen. It's simply astonishing that technology has come so far that it almost takes over our lives.

For many people, the first thing they do when they wake up is reach for their phones, maybe check to see if there are any new emails, see if any messages have come through from Facebook etc. So it's first thing in the morning and they've already glued their eyes to a screen instead of appreciating the beauty of the morning they have just woken up to. First thing in the morning and we are thrown straight into the chaotic, busy and quite frankly complicated modern world. 

But technology has it's benefits and it's not just a distraction. It can be extremely helpful in every day life, connect people and provide a source of leisure and entertainment. Technology also certainly allows us to learn more and see what is going on in the world around us. But I think it's a bit ironic that we are watching the world go on around us on a screen rather than actually seeing it go on around us. 

I know that many of my friends wouldn't survive a day without their phones. One of my friends is always asking if anyone has a phone charger, always messaging someone, switching between real and electronic conversations. Thinking about it, I probably could only just about survive a day without my phone but I would most probably be thinking 'what am I missing?', 'is anyone trying to message me?' etc. As an experiment, I may try and go a complete day without my phone so I will perhaps let you know how that goes in a later post. 

Could you live without your mobile phone?

But it's not just phones! There are also the distractions of TV. It's just a bigger phone really isn't it? (except it only provides entertainment). It's just there, most of the time on, making sound and noise whilst you go about your life. I probably sound like some real miserable person saying all this. But I'm not really! I am just trying to say that technology can be a major distraction in this world. We tend to go about our lives, not really living in the moment and not seeing the true world around us. 

Why do we always check our social media? We don't need to. Does it really matter if we know what our friends are up to this evening? It's just a distraction in our lives. I'm not saying that all technology is bad because it's not. It is actually a very good thing in some cases and it does in some ways improve quality of life... I know I would miss it if it was gone. But I wouldn't miss the distractions that come with it.

The real truth is that we can't escape these distractions. Technology is all around us and it will always be beeping. We just need to learn to sometimes take a step back, look at the world around us through our own eyes and get on with our lives without these technological drawbacks.