Are you as surprised as I am? Me recommending a pop album? That's crazy. But Miley Cyrus' Plastic Hearts is the type of music you want to listen to over and over again. The first two songs are without a doubt the best -- "WTF Do I know" and "Plastic Hearts." Her radio hit "Midnight Sky" will get your blood pumping. What's her secret spice? It's got to be the 1980's rhythm she connects together like Lego pieces. Vulture agrees. A little Stevie Nix influence here, a little Blondie there. All of it a cornucopia of music existentialism. Cyrus' ability to connect these rock dots gives the album its swagger. I could imagine my parents bobbin' their mullets to this.
So much echoes from the past. The things we forget in the sand of time only to be dug up again to make us new again. There's often times I find myself searching for what I want out of things I've already had. I let familiarity guide my internal compass towards the thing I most need.
Most recently it happened with Moby-Dick. Melville's novel resonates with me on a deep level because of the themes he explores. Themes like manliness, a narrator seeking adventure, existentialism, and ambition.
Here's a fun way to find out what themes resonate with you. Write down your top 30 films, movies, or plays. Think about the characters and your thoughts on what the film means. Do that for all of them. You'll soon soon the parallels. It's a bit heady, but it'll show you your path forward. Better yet, figure out elements you loved about them and use those ideas in your writing.
Tarantino watched B-movies to inspire his work. In fact, his whole catalog could be a long running B-movie. His ability to build out of the parts is what makes him an A-lister.
Same could be said of Miley Cyrus' Plastic Hearts. It takes its inspiration from the '80's, but only Cyrus can make it come alive in this matter.
That's what it means to be an artist. To create the new out of the old.
When people ask me if I went to film school I tell them, 'no, I went to films.' - Quentin Tarantino