"It's me, it's me Oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer..."
Well, this has been one interesting set of weeks in my world. It all started a few weeks ago when I decided to post reviews of Kurt Carr and Donnie McClurklin's latest projects up on the Beta Page. And everytime I critique' an album, I usually grade it using the "A,B,C,D,F" rating system. Well, I didn't really enjoy those projects so much, especially when compared to their previous collections of music. Since then, I have been 'buked and scorned by people from all walks of life and it doesn't show no sign of stopping. Hey, I can't help I didn't like the albums. There are plenty of albums in the past that I recall giving poor reviews towards, and even though I always tend to highlight even the good on the albums, people fail to see that and aim towards all the negative attention I place on the projects.
I have even gone on the record of stating that I don't review or judge artists. That's not my role. I review albums, CDs...the music. And that's it. But I don't sugar-coat the reviews, nor have I ever claimed to a professional critic. But it's so amazing that when Siskel & Roper review movies and claim they suck, I'm sure they get hated on by the press and movie lovers. But Siskel & Roper are respected individuals, nevertheless, and always tend to rise beyond the negative comments. They review movies for a living, for God's sake. And then when the Dallas Morning News or the Associated Press or VIBE or AllMusic.com release their reviews on albums that pretty much are horrible, they also rise beyond the negative comments.
Having said that, I wonder can I rise from these last few weeks of negative attention. Even though I love negative criticism and don't mind people stating their opinions (I don't even argue back with them) on any issue, I don't like it when they try to "correct me" (and some of them are good friends) and used the Word of God as a way of coaxing me to change. Some have even gone further to say I'm sinning!!! But then when you talk to these individuals behind closed doors (in IM land, in person or on the phone), they will jump up and down about a project that "sucks". They will even laugh at it and call it junk. Doesn't that pretty much remind you of hypocrisy in action.
I believe if I reviewed secular albums for a living in the way that I am, I won't get this kind of feedback. But in the gospel industry, can't we admit that we don't like a certain album?
For my fellow gospel torchbearers, speak the truth, That's all I have to say and let your voices be heard. Sometimes I feel like I'm all alone in this matter. Maybe I am all alone. Everyone seems to want me to be like Gospelflava.com...just speak only good things. Keep your opinions to yourself and speak only the good. (sigh)
BTW, I'm not hating on Gospelflava.com. They are who they are...we all are different. I just tend to embrace my unique capablities even more. I love who I am.
Recently, I have checked out Lou Williams' "award-winning" website (he's gonna kill me for this), and I have noticed that he speaks his mind, even on an album that he doesn't really care for. He will say it, and he has a right to. That's his opinion and he recognizes his right to freedom of speech. I wonder how much hell floats in his e-mail account due to his opinions on certain "low-rated" reviews.
But this is not a battle with me and my fellow industry partners. Instead, this battle is much more personal. I have tossed aside my cares to the Lord...and I know He knows my sorrow. I know I haven't sinned...but I do know I've been 'buked, sho nuff. I feel like Job right now.
"Not my mother, not my father, but it's me, it's me Oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer."