December 3, 2008

Rewarding The Risk-Takers

The new Kanye West CD, takes two elements of modern day hip-hop: the drum machine (Roland TR-808 Drum Machine) and the Auto Tune (a.k.a. T-Pain's best friend) and uses them to create something fresh. Don't get it twisted, doing this, especially, after the previous formula was working so well, is a huge risk.

But to be great, you got to take risks. In sports, you gotta run that gutsy play, take that big shot, steal that base. In business, you gotta, well, I'm not a business man, but I'm sure there is some risk involved. And in the arts, almost any project is a risk. With each painting, song, or film you're exposing yourself to the world. I mean look what happened to Britney Spears (that is if you consider her an artist). With this new Kanye disc, he's baring his soul, venting about his personal demons (which apparently are plentiful).

Yet this risk-taking can be toxic. It's fitting that in the same week Kanye's risky record comes out, another record "Chinese Democracy" by Guns N' Roses finally came out after over a decade of waiting. One one hand is the new artist, heading in a new direction, and on the other hand is the wicked old rock star finally delivering what was a risky project when Clinton was still President and not Secretary of State.

Sometimes the risk works out and sometimes it doesn't, I guess that's the way of life, whether it's in LA or anywhere else.

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