Is there such a thing as bad music? In those words itself and to the individual, the short answer is yes. But on a much larger scale, the answer is a resounding no. Nobody has the right to tell another that they are listening to bad music, but they sure are allowed to have their own opinion. Yet that is exactly what record labels do for a living. They take someone’s ideas and talent and expect them to be creative, as long as it is creative in a way that makes an ton of money for the suits. I hate how an artist’s originality and creative spirit can literally be extinguished based upon the interpretation of the language of a contract. It’s those that can persevere through the expectations and external pressure that will preserve their identity and legacy.
In the song/video Hunter, by Bjork, she is stripped down to nothing but her own skin and her inner animalistic instincts of a polar bear. She serves as the provider, the only source of sustenance for her family. This is something that she embraces but it is clear that she is trying to shake off her responsibilities as the video drums along. Eventually she gives in to the expectations she faces and delivers yet another feast for her “family” before she is able to fade off back into her own skin.
“You could smell it, so you left me on my own, to complete the mission now, I’m leaving it all behind” speak to the pressures placed upon Bjork for this song to be released. She was ready for a break, she wasn’t ready to go to work, to provide for her record label. A prisoner to her managers and her contract, she had to put out a product that she wasn’t prepared to release. It is in this moment that she had to force herself out into the hunt, to fulfill the needs of the people that depended on her, while maintaining her own pride and self-worth.
When asked about the meaning of “Hunter” Bjork is left describing the personal responsibilities to keep people employed as her motivation towards making this song. As she also says, this can be an inspiring burden to carry. This is almost a way to prevent truly mailing it in and keeping some of your artistic originality intact. Being the provider, the hunter, she is tasked with putting food on the table for so many people. She acknowledged this burden, this inspiration, and put together a piece of music that was well received by the critics.
In the end, this way of thinking is quite admirable. We are all hunters, being called upon at times when we may not be mentally and physically in the best position to do so. Having the ability to step back and view the bigger picture and recognize the effect you can potentially have on others will only allow you to dig deep and produce whatever it is you need, to provide for your “family.” If you allow the inner disdain to consume you, you will jeopardize your character while negatively affecting those closest to you in that situation. It is a mental crossroads that we all face. The ability to find the strength to care for those that depend on you, while staying on your true path, will leave you with very few regrets.