Before today I could tell you exactly nothing about Uzbekistan. Honestly, I probably couldn’t have found it on a map. But then I came across this fascinating article about the history of rock and roll in the country, from its start in the 60s, its heyday in the 90s, and its subsequent suppression by the government in the 21st century. In 2011, rock and roll was labelled Satanic by officials, and bands required an official license to perform starting in 2012. The article was written in 2020, at which time it was estimated that only ten bands still existed in Uzbekistan’s capital. And those that remained didn’t seem to be all that hopeful for the future. One of those bands was ЭЛЕКТРООКО, and today’s daily helping is their song “Ничего не изменится“. It means “nothing will change”.
The more I learn about the world, the more I realize just how much I have taken for granted in my life. For example, I have always known that if I wanted to start a rock band, I could start a rock band. I’ve never actually had the desire to start a rock band, but the fact remains that that was always an option for me. I could just pick up an instrument and I could start playing. More importantly, I could sing about anything I wanted without fear of repercussion from the government. Audiences might have strong opinions about my music, but I was never in danger of government suppression. It’s one of the countless freedoms I’ve taken for granted my whole life.
I looked into it, and Uzbekistan is ranked as one of the most repressive countries in the world, and has for decades. No wonder ЭЛЕКТРООКО sings that nothing will change. I can only imagine that that’s what it feels like. Hopefully they will be able to sing a different tune in their lifetime.
Suggestions for artists I should check out? Please contact me with your ideas. I hope you enjoyed your daily helping of art!