Thursday, January 11, 2007

Who's From Rolling Stone?

Every time I tell someone I like the new reality series on MTV, I'm From Rolling Stone, they say one of two things. Either they tell me I am hypocritical and am ruining any chance of true music journalism coming back to the forefront...or they tell me that I should have been on the show. Frankly, it's been my parents or my roommate telling me I should have been part of it, so don't think I'm tooting any horns.

In fact, I actually considered applying when I first heard of the show over a year ago. The opportunity sounded fabulous. But never would I imagine being on television, let alone a reality show on MTV. I still am embarrassed just having a radio show. See, there's a reason people strive to become journalists. It's not to get on TV, it's to hide behind their byline.

Like most things pop culture, I find the show fascinating. There has only been one episode that's aired, but already I've found myself scouring the internet for reviews, backstories, etc. I'm still in the very early stages of a music journalism career, but the more I can see and learn from -- the better. Sure, the experience these six people will have at Rolling Stone is far from realistic. But I'm still going to sit in front of my TV screen each week, with my curiosity heightened.

Given my new obsession, I have found Colin Stutz's personal website. I liked him off the bat once I started watching the first episode, for his indie band posters in the background and his carelessness in speech and appearance. He's got the hipster hair. The stoner personna. Basically he's a typecast of MTV's idea of what is underground. While he's not my frontrunner to win the entire competition, I think I'll end up having a respect for him by the show's end.

With that said, his website as it stands now is just a letter with "What was it like?" as its jumping off point. He's got a good head on his shoulders, this kid. Not taking the show too seriously, but instead using it as what it should be -- a learning experience.

So honestly, what was it like? It was incredible. I got to live out a reality that so many others have only dreamt of. But the truth is that the experience was tainted because I knew damn well that I was not there on my own accord, that I had not earned this chance the way I had always planned on earning it. I was there because of the cameras; I was there because of what I despised. And often this made me-and continues to make me-sick. So consider this as an apology to all you friends, family, acquaintances, and strangers out there, if you see me and ask me what it was like to be a part of "I'm From Rolling Stone" and I respond with a tone of indifference, it is not because your interest is an unappreciated burden, it is because I'm kind of embarrassed. How do you describe something that was at times so euphoric, but still made you sick? How do you give an explanation that tore you apart like this did to me? Maybe "bizarre" doesn't say it all, but I guess it does the job.

The site will document (as much as he is legally allowed to) the experience of the show each week as it runs. I'm curious of his insight as things progress. He says: "think of it as less of an ego trip, and more of a social commentary and we'll be just fine."

Will do. Stay tuned.

Oh and in case you haven't heard of the show? Watch this.


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