I’m an OG cord cutter (since 2003, besta recognize). As such, I tend to watch a lot of YouTube. I ran into a video the other day from a YouTuber who subscribes to an ideology that, as a creative myself, somewhat irked me. He’s firmly of the mindset that popularity beats talent, and while I don’t enjoy the sentiment, I see the many ways that he’s sadly right.
There’s that old adage that says, “It’s not about what you know, but who you know.” I’ve actually found this to be mostly true throughout the duration of my professional carer because uh… I’ve seen some unqualified people get into positions because they were buddies with someone who had hiring privileges. Hell, I’ve hired plenty of friends before!
Nowadays I’m trying to pursue more creative endeavors and I’m starting to find that who knows me matters much more than who I know. And online, where I do most of my work, no one knows who the eff I am. I mean, some people know, but I’m pretty much a nobody in comparison to people blowing up on Instagram and YouTube. And I know it has nothing to do with my level of talent.
There’s a guy on Instagram I ran into who’s whole shtick is basically being an asshole. His biggest bit is going into stores, pretending he’s going to pay and then running out. Homie has 2.3 million followers…
Jake Paul (who’s a former Disney Kids star) recently blew up on YouTube. He set fire to his pool, doxxed a number of people (including doughy rapper/folksy crooner Post Malone), received numerous neighborhood complaints, and falsely accused another YouTuber of assaulting his female assistant (he even hired a fake cop to appear in photos as proof of him reporting this to authorities). Homie has over 10 million subscribers…
Some of you may be thinking, “Dre, you’re just jealous.” Well, my response would be, “Kinda!”
I actually take my art really seriously. I don’t give a sugar honey iced tea about fame or anything, but at the very least I’d like to make a career from my art. I mean, Jake Paul recently decided to make really, really bad rap music… AND HE MADE THE BILLBOARD TOP 100.
Let that sink in.
He only just started rapping and he’s fairly garbage at it. Yet he has a Billboard top 100 song.
My brain… it weeps.
Such is life I suppose. I’m going to keep at it because there isn’t much more I can do other than be persistent, jump on any opportunities, and let my art speak for itself. Besides, popularity is fleeting, especially in this fast food, short attention span, internet age. I want to create something timeless… or however long humanity lasts #SaveTheEnvironment
Peace out, party people.