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Your Music Sucks

MSNBC story:

It's unavoidable. If your music is not instantly dismissible, if it endures, it's going to be the subject of someone's over-adoring gaze. Maybe way too many someones. Best-of lists and Halls of Fame and hagiographic films about "the soul of the music." You're lucky if you can avoid it. But most popular bands don't. And that praise-bloat kills.

I'm specifically thinking of The Police, whose main contribution to culture has been the inclusion of their stalker-themed love song "Every Breath You Take" in very confused wedding receptions. Any band whose influence dots can be connected two decades later to Blake Lewis has a lot to answer for.

Who else?

There's a valid case to be made that if something is really, really popular, it probably isn't really, really good. Take Britney Spears or New Kid on the Block as perfect examples.

Back in the day, my two favorite bands were Emerson Lake and Palmer and Yes. Yes has been reduced to the subject of an argument in a commercial and ELP just vanished from public consciousness completely. I still like Yes, but it's interesting that their stuff I *used* to like, I don't any more and vice versa. ELP has kind of faded for me personally as well. I thought Works, Part 1 and their version of Pictures at an Exhibition were albums for the ages, but now they're just childish and overblown if not downright funny.

It seems that of all the popular bands from my youth, the only one which has really stood the test of time was the most popular one of all -- The Beatles. I didn't like Abbey Road at all when it first came out, but now I pobably listen to it more than any other album in my collection.

Among the others who I thought were super-groovy-cool at the time were Chicago, Argent, The Doors, and the Moody Blues. They still have some nostalgic appeal to me, but I'd not call them "good music" any more.

So what bands are you ashamed to admit you used to like?

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Comments (3)


Well, some bands enjoy popularity for entirely different reasons.

There's formulaic catchy tunes that you find yourself singing through clenched teeth, then there's actual musical artistry that happens to appeal to and be recognized by a lot of people.

More an more, it seems the music industry has tried to find those catchy, hard to disagree with tunes rather than actual artists.

I'm from a slightly different era than you (born in 1975) so the bands I'm ashamed for having liked are a little different.

For me, in the golden age of regrettable bands, I loved groups like Bon Jovi, Warrant and Poison. The thankfully short lived era of hairbands is the subject of embarrassment for many I think!

Paul Hamilton:

You and my wife would get along great, Heralder. She's seriously stuck in the 80s. And the really depressing thing about that is that she was in her 30s at the time. Just last year she went to a Cinderella and Poison concert...


That's funny! It's interesting that many of these 80's bands have a real campy value now.

Cinderella and Poison are touring? HOLY COW!

Well, at least they're working.


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