For Your Consideration

For Your Consideration

What’s your tribe? Overcoming prog-rock oppression

Thom admits to his guilty pleasure of enjoying disco

I grew up (musically speaking) in the disco era.

But that was not my tribe. I was a member of the prog-rock tribe and our mantra was “Disco Sucks!”

I’m still not a huge disco fan by any means, but last year when I started playing bass guitar again after a hiatus of some 15 years, I decided I was going to choose what songs to learn based solely on whether they had a great bassline.

Consequently, in my current repertoire, I have a vast range of musical styles represented, including disco.

It makes sense, of course, bass is the driving force behind a lot of dance music. What I found was songs such as “I Will Survive” (Gloria Gaynor) and “Got To Be Real” (Cheryl Lynn) are wildly fun to play on the bass and not nearly as simple as our prog-rock sensibilities were willing to recognize back in the day.

LAST WEEK: Can I get a mac and cheeser chaser with my beer, please?

Nevertheless, I still felt that old twinge of guilty pleasure enjoying disco so much.

Guilty pleasures are interesting phenomena. Let’s start with a simple definition: A guilty pleasure is something you know you shouldn’t like, but like anyway.

Something we shouldn’t like according to whom?

Why should we feel guilty about liking the things we like?

Kresnicka Research & Insights, an American consultancy firm that touts itself as “business anthropologists,” conducted a study that offers an interesting explanation.

“Our individual survival, in large part, depends on maintaining a sense of connection to our social group,” wrote company president Susan Kresnicka.

“Yet that connection comes at a cost — we must constantly navigate tensions between our individual desires and the group’s expectations. From the moment we wake up in the morning until the moment we fall asleep at night, our varying social roles (parent, spouse, friend, employee, etc.) set expectations for how we “should” look, act, feel.

MORE FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION: Information should be publicly available unless there is a good reason why it shouldn’t be

“When we derive pleasure from something that society judges as “bad” or “bad for us,” we set limits on society’s influence over us. It is a momentary act of boundary-setting in which we refuse to let the social group’s expectations hold power.”

Okay, so that is not exactly Earth-shattering insight, but it is very well put.

It’s amazing to me how persistent it can be, though. It’s been decades since I was part of that prog-rock tribe, but that identity must have been profoundly important to me at the time. That makes sense because I was a teenager and we all know how important social belonging is in those formative years.

We all inhabit a variety of identities and I have found over the past two years examining and admitting my guilty pleasures is really helping me to find my authentic self.

In the words of the immortal Diana Ross (or actually Bernard Edwards and Nile Rodgers who wrote the song and a great bassline to go along with it):

I’m coming out.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Demonstrators lined Hwy 16 May 5 to mark the National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. (Deb Meissner photo)
VIDEO: Smithers gathering marks Red Dress Day honouring missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls

Approximately 70 people lined Hwy 16, drumming, singing and holding up placards

“Skeena,” by John Hudson and Paul Hanslow is one of five fonts in the running to become the default for Microsoft systems and Office programs. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Font named after Skeena River could become the next Microsoft default

One of the five new fonts will replace Calibri, which has been Microsoft’s default since 2007

The road to Telegraph Creek (Hwy 51) was closed April 15 due to a washout. On May 4, the road was opened to light-duty passenger vehicles during specific times. (BC Transportation and Infrastructure/Facebook)
Telegraph Creek Road opens for light-duty vehicles

Road has been closed since April 15 due to a washout

Gitxsan Nation extends fishing ban for non-Indigenous permit holders indefinitely . (Photo courtesy, Travis Murphy)
Gitxsan Nation extends ban for non-Indigenous fishing permit holders across their territory

The move comes after the province backed away from ongoing discussions with Gitxsan chiefs and DFO

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

RCMP are looking for information on an alleged shooting attempt near an elementary school in Smithers March 10. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News/Stock)
UPDATE: Man killed in brazen daylight shooting at Vancouver airport

Details about the police incident are still unknown

Pieces of nephrite jade are shown at a mine site in northwestern B.C. in July 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Tahltan Central Government MANDATORY CREDIT
Indigenous nation opposes jade mining in northwestern B.C.

B.C.’s Mines Act requires operators to prepare a plan to protect cultural heritage resources

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The body of Brenda Ware, 35, was found along Highway 93 in Kootenay National Park on Thursday, May 6, 2021. (RCMP handout)
RCMP ask for tips after woman’s body found in Kootenay National Park

Brenda Ware was found along Highway 93 in the park, 54 kilometres north of the town of Radium

People pass the red hearts on the COVID-19 Memorial Wall mourning those who have died, opposite the Houses of Parliament on the Embankment in London, Wednesday, April 7, 2021. On May 3, the British government announced that only one person had died of COVID-19 in the previous 24 hours. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Kirsty Wigglesworth
For a view of a COVID-19 future, Canadians should look across the pond

Britain, like Canada, is one of the only countries in the world to delay second doses for several months

Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid (97) celebrates his 100th point this season with Leon Draisaitl (29) against the Vancouver Canucks during second period NHL action in Edmonton on Saturday, May 8, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Edmonton superstar McDavid hits 100-point mark as Oilers edge Canucks 4-3

NHL scoring leader needs just 53 games to reach century mark

Nuns of Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity, carry some of her relics during a vigil of prayer in preparation for the canonization of Mother Teresa in the St. John in Latheran Basilica at the Vatican, Friday, Sept. 2, 2016. In which city did she do much of her charitable work? (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
QUIZ: How much do you know about these motherhood issues?

In honour of Mother’s Day, take this 10-question quiz

Most Read