Great Art Comes From Adversity: Why it’s Not All Bad if Trump Wins

Look, before we start, there has to be an apology. Why? Because we gotta do it. We gotta talk about the elephant in the room. Or rather, the elephant and the donkey in the room: The American Election. Drumpf vs. Clinton. At the time of writing, the final polls have closed and the count is rolling in. It’s been a long and arduous campaign cycle, and we just want it to be over. But ultimately, it won’t be over today. The election may be (finally, mercifully) finished, but the USA has to lie in the bed it just made.

Whatever the result, I want to inject a little positivity into the whole thing, through the wonderful power of ~music~

A quick look through the history of art shows a consistent thread: Great art comes out of adversity. The hardest times in history have always spawned some of the best artistic products, and many of the greatest artists have endured troubled lives. Pablo Picasso (who isn’t an alter ego of Kanye West, btw) painted many of his best works during the Spanish Civil War. Some of Japan’s most popular literary works spawned from their post-war national identity crisis. And on a musical level, just think how much amazing music exists as calls of protest or reactions to tragedy. Ye’s MBDTF was born from his social exile, Kendrick Lamar’s TPAB could almost be considered a musical manifesto in its social commentary, and Radiohead’s works each deal with emotions in very different ways.

So here’s an idea. If Drumpf wins, there will be one upside: Think how much great art will come out of the resulting dark age. American musicians will have all the material they will ever need to produce some wild social commentary. The famous “Bush doesn’t care about black people” line will seem like the musings of a 9-year old compared to the stuff that a Drumpf presidency will inspire. We can see Pink Floyd doing a sequel album to The WallRun The Jewels 4 might as well be a molotov cocktail it will be that incendiary.

Just look at the amount of political music that has emerged during the campaign! From the pointed anger of Prophets Of Rage to the searing collaboration between YG and Nipsey Hussle. This last one was particularly special, seeing as the two rappers are members of rival gangs the Bloods and Crips. But even they were able to unite for their distaste for the Republican candidate, coming together despite a gulf of social distance to produce FDT (Fuck Donald Trump).

On the more subtle side, Father John Misty recently covered a Tim Heidecker song, Trump’s Pilot. Sung from the perspective of (who’d have guessed) Drumpf’s pilot, he extols his desire to crash with The Donald onboard in an act of sacrifice for the greater good.

Even passing lyrics like El-P’s “Flame your crew quicker than Trump fucks his youngest” have quite a cut to them. So, amidst all the seeming despair and injustice that may come with a Drumpf victory today, it may give you small solace that the musical landscape may shift dramatically and result in some of the greatest creative turns from some of our most influential artists for at least four more years.

Seriously though, when is the joke over, America?

Image: Classic FM