An article about the impact of Avicii's death on me
SOMEWHERE IN STOCKHOLM
A gifted musician, an intellectual thinker and a simple man, lost in the complexities of life - this was who the world lost on the 20th of April this year. I speak of none other than Tim Bergling, or as the world knows him, Avicii. To the vast majority, his demise may only appear like a story about a world-famous producer who committed suicide, but at the very foundation of his story lies a paradigm that everyone finds themselves in at some point in their lives. My purpose is to shed light on Tim's story and ponder about whether the paradox that consumed him (more pertinent an issue to my generation than all else, in my opinion) can even be defeated. However, an introduction for all who haven't heard of him only seems apt, so that is where I begin this narration.
His career was immensely prolific for the short span that it lasted, as he established himself as a mainstay in the music industry at an early age. That, however, was a journey he wished was a whole lot different from the one he envisioned. Quoting his family, "He was a sensitive guy, who loved his fans but shunned the spotlight. Tim was not made for the business machine he found himself in." The world saw him as a cash-cow, and cash-cows had to be milked.
An introvert by nature, Tim could never handle the big stage easily. He also struggled with mental health issues and alcoholism throughout his life, all while managing an arduous and apathetic schedule. Life at the top seemed very lonely, and it took so much out of him that he stopped touring in 2016. He was 'a fragile, artistic soul', seeking answers to the questions we conveniently ignore each and every day. But alas, Tim had become yet another victim of the ever-demanding music industry and an unforgiving world which won't hesitate to burst your happy little bubble whenever it wishes to.
All Tim ever wanted in his life was a balance - a balance between his passion for music, and a happy life. In spite of all the money and fame that came his way, he chose to end the nightmare - one that may seem like a dream to a lot of my generation. However, as I began learning about who Tim Bergling really was as a person from his documentary, 'True Stories', I realized that he was never a celebrity at heart. He faced these problems throughout his career, but never let his emotions take over him. In the face of relentless dehumanization, he chose to persevere and keep people happy. What started out as a dream turned into a nightmare, and this is what makes his story immensely sorrowful. When I listen to his music now, all it ever sounds like is a cry for help. It's apparent what he was trying to say, but no one ever listened before. They don't remind themselves to do so now.
The painful truth is that there may be no place for people like Tim. Time to introspect on our thoughts is virtually non-existent in this modern world, which only further motivates me to question whether we're ever going to escape the paradox of self-sustainability that is the human race. Is becoming a slave to the machine all we're ever going to propagate to the future generations? When do we allow ourselves to break free? Is freedom the real illusion?
A relevant quote springs to my mind at this point, "surviving in the extremes and thriving in the middle ground", and the middle ground is the place I believe we must all find in our lives, in the hope that the machine is overwhelmingly defeated.
The world already lost Avicii. Let it not lose any more.