EDITORIAL: Authenticity

What does it mean to be "Authentic"? It's a word thrown around quite a bit with regards to art, music, fashion, and human beings. 

The Dictionary definition says:

The quality of being authentic.

That doesn't help much. Authentic is described as "Genuine", or 

based on facts; accurate or reliable. 

So what does it mean to make authentic art? Or music? Everyone derives inspiration from somewhere, so can we draw a line as to what is authentic or inauthentic? Obviously a Louis Vuitton bag that wasn't made by a Louis Vuitton authorized factory is inauthentic. So in that sense we have a definition that makes sense. 

In the psychological concept of existentialism, authenticity is the degree to which an individual's actions are congruent with their beliefs and desires, despite external pressures. 

Now the word is starting to make more sense. Despite external pressures. Basically creating the type of art, music, or being the person you are despite external pressures, and being congruent with your own beliefs. 

That poses a problem to musicians or clothing designers who are under pressure to satisfy fans, record labels, stores, or customers. Many people miss the old sound of Jay-Z, or the old Kanye. But if they made music in a specific style to satisfy labels or listeners that would by definition be inauthentic. 

It would seem we all have to do us, and stay true to our beliefs, despite external pressure. The world has enough fake things in it, cheers to authenticity.