How serious about music do you have to be to have a band?
How good do you have to be to have a band?
What are your intentions for being in a band?
I have found out that there are a number of music snobs in this community, which is a little embarrassing, and it’s not because this isn’t L.A., or New York, or Austin or Seattle, it’s embarrassing because that’s an elitist mentality. As far as the whole county goes, we have some pretty cool musicians calling this their home. We have Grammy winners, we have dozens of artists who have actually “been to the show” and have toured with national acts and have had hits on the radio, members from Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Todd the Wet Sprocket, Social Distortion, the Foo Fighters, even Chris Cornell lived here for a while. We have some terrific session musicians and producers who have worked on world-renowned projects and consistently work on scores for movies and television. So we do have some real talent here. But that isn’t the point.
We also happen to have some mediocre artists who dream of making the big time, and we have some mediocre artists who are content for playing gigs from time to time. And we have some artists who if we’re being completely honest, aren’t so good, but have a dream of playing music – and if there is an audience who appreciates them, then why tear them down?
And as far as one’s intentions go, if you’re in a band to get laid, or to receive gratification or validation, or if you honestly want to make an impact on others’ lives, it really doesn’t matter as long as you have an audience who supports you.
I understand there will always be a pecking order of musicians here based on their demand, for all genres of music from punk to jazz. And that demand may be based on their talent, or how much other musicians like playing with them, or how much an audience loves them, but to tear down, or belittle another artist, is just elitist, and pitiful.
And of course if you are a talented musician and know your shit like no one else, it would be expected that you surround yourself with other musicians of your caliber. I’ve seen the best of and the worst of bands here in town. As the saying goes, “There’s no accounting for taste” and the proof always comes out in the pudding. Do you have an audience, or don’t you?
And please, we know some of you are more educated about music. Congratulations. That doesn’t make you a better person. Contributing and making a difference makes you a better person.
So if you’re in a band or playing as a solo artist and you make someone smile and make their day just a little better, then that my friend is the bottom line and to you I say you freakin’ rock.