Music is My Life, They Are My Heroes.
I love all music.
But my all time favorite, hands down, no competition, is My Chemical Romance. I love them for many reasons. The main being they are artists.
I believe art comes in many forms: art as it is known, music, writing, movies. Entertainment to me is art. And I think that these guys- these talented men- have the right idea with how they want to live out their careers.
I am not usually on top of new music, and when My Chemical Romance first came out, I was too young to find music on my own. Now I surely regret this, but que sera sera. Looking back at why and how they began, I realized a few things about myself and the world. Everyone has- or needs- something to believe in. Everyone has a dream, some just don’t realize it. Sometimes it takes a miracle, but sometimes it takes a tragedy.
Gerard Arthur Way was in his early twenties when the twin towers fell in 9-11. It jolted him into his music career. He wanted to make something of himself. I think everyone should want to. He started a band with drummer Matt Pelissier and Ray Toro in New Jersey by the end of that year. Later his younger brother picked up the bass- and also the name of the band; from Irvine Welsh’s ‘Ecstacy: Three Tales Of Chemical Romance’.
Their first songs were staged and recorded in Matt’s attic. When the band was with Eyeball Records, My Chemical Romance became friends with Pencey Prep, mainly the frontman Frank Iero. Frank would come to My Chemical Romance’s practices, and before their first record, Frank became a permanent member. In the Grammy Museum Interview, Frank tells the crowd that HE was My Chemical Romance’s biggest fan, because he loved their music before he was a part of it.
“That’s funny because when you guys say, ‘Ah, I’m your biggest fan’ that’s not true. I was actually the first. So I know you’re full of s–t when you say it!” -Frank Iero.
“Life isn’t a game. I was doing something very irrelavant, that I didn’t feel was important. I remember thinking that to myself, that I can’t waste it. And it was literally two weeks later when we had our first rehearsal.” Gerard on 9-11. Skylines and Turnstiles, the first song on the record “I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love”, was Gerard Way’s view of 9-11.
They earned their first major fanbase with their second album, “Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge” hitting platnium within a year. The Used joined them in charity to cover Queen and David Bowie’s “Under Pressure”. In 2006, the band broke through to ultimate fame with conception album, “The Black Parade”. The Black Parade followed the fictional story of the “Patient”, a cancer patient who dies. Characters also featered are Mother War, Fear, and Regret. All of them are featured in “Welcome To The Black Parade”, and “Mama” is about Mother War. The anthem “Welcome To The Black Parade” is probably My Chemical Romance’s second most popular song, surpassed only by “Teenagers”.
Teenagers was actually my first favorite, when my friend brought over The Black Parade. We turned the lights down, turned on these little pathetic strobe lights, and danced. I remember the first time I heard the album, I was actually scared of the strange new sound. But not months later, every time I heard My Chemical Romance, I started falling in love with them, for more than the sound.
I enjoyed the individuality of their sound, their videos, their outfits. The more I learned about them and who they were, I loved them more. Gerard did something I could relate to: he played music and wrote comic books. I’m a writer, so I realized that it’s possible. The idea that people COULD make music while inspiring people, WHILE creating and telling a story.
I was still a fresh listener when I heard Na Na Na, before Danger Days was released. I didn’t know the plot, I didn’t understand a thing about being a Killjoy. I liked the song itself. And when I looked up the album, I immeadiately knew that these guys were going to be a bigger part of my life than anything. Gerard had died his hair red! And they created their own world that I could get myself lost into. “Danger Days: The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys”. I told my aunt that it was all I wanted for Christmas. I wanted to be a part of it.
By Christmas, I had forgotten about my request for the CD. When I opened the present, I screamed and yelled and took it to my parent’s truck and listened to it over and over again. My parents had to tell me to turn it down and come inside. Then I slept with it underneath my pillow.
Since then, I’ve followed the adventures of Party Poison and Jet Star, Kobra Kid and Fun Ghoul. But ultimately, I have followed My Chemical Romance. Some people listen to bands because of their looks, their lyrics, or just their sound. I love the songs, I love the storylines, but mostly I love who the band members are and what they stand for.
They have never been afraid to listen to their hearts and forget the people who tell them that they can’t make it. They have always put their art first, but they love their fans. They aren’t in it for the fame, they are in it to make themselves happy, to feel fufilled. And when I hear Sing or Teenagers, I feel the same compelling urge to follow my dreams, because they are proof that it can happen.
They’ve changed my life and I know it’s been a good thing. It exposed me to a new world that I took part in, a world that expanded my creativity and my view on life. I am grateful to that friend- who is no longer part of my life- that she showed me them, and I will continue to be a dedicated fan for years to go.
XoXo Radium Rollercoaster