I have become one of those music snobs and I just realized it today. I am sitting here with a stack of CDs on my desk per usual and listening to this average band at best playing radio friendly adult contemporary music you might find in 1986. Why is this relevant in 2008? Why do people record this stuff and spend lots of money to put it out?
I have become jaded because some of my rock heroes have become my friends and I think their music is the elite. So why can’t these unsigned bands be as good as Pearl Jam, King’s X, Juliana Hatfield, Hamell on Trial or Ani DiFranco and I think that is a pretty diverse selection of music mind you.
Where has the soul and heart and passion gone in music. Who would really make the commitment in today’s bands to play a three hour show and sweat through their clothes like Eddie Vedder or Bruce Springsteen and those dudes are in their latter years. They could out rock any of these new punks on the block who think they know about music. Hell they think music started with Blink 182, Green Day. They only like the Clash, Joe Strummer, Sex Pistols because it is “punk cool” to like them. But do they know the history, do they know the literal blood sweat and tears some of those bands put into their music?
Sure there are still good bands out there playing for the sake of the music but in this era of downloads, My Space what not, anyone can play three chords, write and record a song on their computer and call themselves a musician.
A friend of mine, who was mentioned above, told me that music was becoming disposable and sadly they were right. One click of the button and you can throw a song into your computer trash bin or erase it from your IPod when you are sick of it. But how can anyone really get sick of music?
After reading his rant, I decided to go through my own stack of promo CDs to find one solid release courtesy of a major label. Nothing. There is some great stuff coming out on smaller indies (the new Gaslight Anthem on SideOne is amazing and the Osaka Popstar live record will likely be in my car stereo for the next three years!), but small labels are limited in their distribution and the amount of money they can spend on promoting a band, so chances are you will likely never hear about any of these bands if you don't regularly hit the small dive clubs and bar.
All that being said, I will continue to do my admittedly small part and trumpet these smaller, far more talented bands in any way that I can, from magazines to blogs. It's a drop in the bucket, but it at least makes me feel better about myself.