So, this post is not for those who don’t like to read/watch about the LGBT (Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual/gender, and other non-straight, non-cis people) community.
ADAMS, one of my fav Japanese bands (other than Acid Black Cherry and some others), uploaded their new videoclip. Their single has been out for a while, though not yet in digital form. I’ve seen these amazing guys live back in July, I still remember the concert so well.
The main themes of their videos and music are homosexuality and art. Their previous clips are amazing, Dizzy Love is a beautiful example of a dangerous relationship, Kimi No Sei shows longing and loneliness and One and Only (the photos were made during the tour in the EU, I think most of them are from Paris?) is upbeat, sweet and sensual.
They all fall into nothing when you compare it to their latest song. Seseragi (せせらぎ) is beautiful, haunting and almost made me cry. I’ll show you the clip before I talk about how this song and videoclip influenced me.
You can find the translations of this song on the Revolutionary Love forums: Seseragi.
Even just listening to the short version I knew it was going to be a beautiful song, as Kimi no Sei and some others are. Pulling you along with the music and the lyrics at the same time. Their clips and songs are so perfect that even if you don’t know Japanese you can get a real feeling of what the songs are about. These men are music, art and marketing geniuses.
The clip hit a painful note with me. As some people know, my trilogy Black Sheep is about two high school guys in love and one of them needs to deal with his own past, depression and suicidal tendencies. What no-one knows is that one of the original scenes (that never made it into the story) is a scene where Vic, the main character, tries to commit suicide in the bath, exactly like in the clip.
Just watching the clip almost made me cry, largely because Black Sheep was my first series and because depression and feelings of worthlessness are something that a lot of teens go through. For LGBT teens this is even a higher rate. This clip, for me, was confronting for why I started writing in the first place. I wanted to tell stories, I wanted to express feelings, I wanted to show a different side to people.
The Black Sheep Trilogy are a series that goes into the core of many things. Among them is learning how to deal with things. Vic, the MC, needs to learn how to let go of his destructive past and to overcome his own self destruction. Anne, his sister, needs to learn to let Vic stand on his own two feet while at the same time she really wants to protect him from himself and others. Adam (yeah, funny how I used that name in Black Sheep when I started writing it six years ago), his first boyfriend, is in the position of knowing Vic too well and also identifying with the guy too much. Some of the horrors that Vic is fighting, like destructive tendencies, is also what Adam used to be fighting.
Within these stories I always tried to not tell but let people experience the different positions they are in. That wouldn’t have been possible without the voice of Jack, Vic’s new boyfriend. Who only gets to know the characters closely at the beginning of the book. What I found was that Jack was the voice of love and acceptance, he is the one who holds things together when they start to ravel apart.
With Black Sheep, and that is the same feeling that I get from ADAMS’ Seseragi, it is not about explaining, it is not about trying to talk down to people. Relationships can be hard, especially when you’re damaged or troubled. And even though people like to say that teens are over emotional and that their lives are easy. I know that they aren’t.
Maybe because I’m only 25, I might not have aged too far yet to be able to forget the bad stuff, or maybe I’ve just experienced more than most people. But my teens were not the easiest or the best time of my life.
The problems teens go through are real, some more real than others. In Black Sheep some things are fictional, both Vic’s and Adam’s diseases are not real (or at least not based on anything real), they are combinations of their past actions and physical replies of their own body.
The things that are real are all the other things. All the things the characters in Black Sheep go through are experiences from me, my friends and/or stories from people I have found online. This is something I never forget when I think about Black Sheep.
And videos, like Seseragi, can trigger this memory for me. The memory of writing Black Sheep or reading or talking to someone going through destructive behaviour. These stories stick with me because, partly, they are my experiences of the world, of my life when I was a teen.
And on that note I’m finishing the post here, I could talk about these subjects for hours, but I’ve got other things to get to, like homework. Enjoy (I always feel weird saying that when something isn’t happy) Seseragi, please remember to support ADAMS by buying their singles or go to their shows (which are 100% worth it!).