Alex Banks

The holiday seasons are becoming a blur.

Halloween just passed, and right on Nov. 1 we seemed to transition over to Christmas....like we don’t have another holiday to be celebrating.

Don’t get me wrong. I love Christmas and all the decorations, songs, feel-good movies and joy it brings, but I feel like it’s way to early to be setting up for that holiday. We still have one more holiday to enjoy until Santa makes his rounds and Frosty the Snowman can come.

Every since I was a little kid I was always like that....I wanted to enjoy Thanksgiving before starting with all things Christmas.

Others obviously aren’t of the same mindset, but I feel we need to cherish Thanksgiving as well because it is a time to be thankful.... a day we can get the family together and just enjoy that time together and catch up on many things. And we can’t forget the food that comes along with it and the food coma that follows. Many other people and families have their reasons for starting Christmas festivities early, but I’m always going to wait and give Thanksgiving its full due.

I love Christmas, too, but only in good time.

Being in my early 20s and still up to date with all the relevant things young kids do today, I recently found myself in a debate with some folks from an older generation about today’s music whether it is sending positive messages or is just overall just making kids act out and wanting a celebrity-style high life. When I looked at it from their perspective I understood where they were coming from when they said modern music is just a bunch of cussing, talk of drugs and money, and derogatory lyrics toward women.

But when we look back to the ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s music was like that too......but not made into the way it is now. But not all of it is bad, such as in the hip-hop genre which I listen to the most, although some may disagree. For most of your children, grandchildren, or nieces and nephews they most likely listen to it because it sounds good and is upbeat...which makes them feel good. Others listen to it to get pumped up before a big sporting event like I used to do. But if you take the time to sit down and listen to the message of the songs you see beyond the occasional cuss word.

One of my favorite songs is “No Role Modelz” By J. Cole, a favorite artist. In it he talks about how how he can’t think of a role model for young girls and women. Cole points out that so many women currently in the media are stereotyped and sexualized, while there are no good, wholesome and respectable role models to whom women can aspire. He then refers to “Uncle Phil,” who was a character played by James Avery in the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air television show, who was able to be his role model as he grew up in a fatherless home, and refers to how many others have done the same. Overall he is speaking to the culture today and what what it lacks. This is just one of many current songs that deliver a positive social message calling for needed change.

Not all do, to be sure.....but there are also some gems among modern music with messages that speak to young adults - just like the music of past generations, which was almost always disliked by the olders.

Hasn’t every generation’s music been maligned by the generation that came before?

But I feel it is also true that every generation’s music has probably reflected the social issues of the time, and today’s is no different.