Daft Punk on Humility
The song is perpetually stuck in my head. The melodic groove of 2013's "Get Lucky" is lodged so deep that I'll find myself humming it and not even thinking. Yes, I know what it's about, but blast it that's a charming groove!
Watching highlights from last night's Grammy awards I - like others - noticed again that they dress as robotic altar egos. They wear glimmering, opaque masks that are so all consuming that my wife's claustrophobia kicked in and she exclaimed, "How do they breathe in those things?"
Musicians have pulled this trick for years - from KISS to GWAR to Slipknot - bands have covered their identities in public and let that secrecy define them. With these in particular, it allowed them to be a bit more extreme than if they weren't in disguise, but that's another discussion.
And yes, a simple check of Wikipedia will tell you the names and birthplaces of these artists and even give you pictures of them minus masks, still there's a hiddenness to the whole act.
You don't see me up there. You see what I'm projecting.
Talking about the robotic duo over pancakes this morning, I wondered out loud: "Is this some form of humility?"
Think about it - you can go out in public without the mask and just be another guy. You aren't the winner of multiple Grammys, you aren't a highly coveted concert performer, you are simply the flesh under the mask. You are the unknown driver of the vehicle you created to hide the veins and arteries that help the brain-at-the-helm create incredibly infectious melodies.
Is there something self-denying about this? Is it just a gimmick that brings success or is it truly something that allows you to step out of the spotlight and let the persona be the success?
I am not suggesting that the men of Daft Punk are out to avoid recognition, far from it, but it is to whom that recognition goes to that matters most.
When Paul says, "put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness." (Ephesians 4:22-24, NIV) we tend to think this is all about having the acceptable moral resume.
But what if it's actually bigger than that?
What if this is the single most poetic movement of a human being from self-gratification to humble self-surrender? To get immersed - to get lost in what is essentially a detailed and pinpoint accurate description of Jesus Christ Himself?
The recognition for a brilliant, hope-filled, and life-giving existence goes to whom it is due. Growing into the image of Christ means backing out of the image of us. I'm not saying we become robots, lobotomized by righteousness, but instead we become the best version of God's created-image-in-us. We are life and life to the full.
So I have no idea what Daft Punk is after with the masks and theatrics, and likely success and notoriety are in the neighborhood, but at least now I have a head-bobbing groove and a new perspective on transformation into Christlikeness.
That can't be all bad, can it?