Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Dog Days

I'm in a blogging lull. I'm sure most bloggers get to this point at some time. But some days it can be as fulfilling as decoupling on a humid day. I read about new music emerging onto the spotlit world stage almost daily. I listen to samples, shake my head and then realize that the age gap between me and the people who write about/listen to music on places like brooklynvegan and pitchfork is affecting the way I DON'T write about music. it is affecting the way I care about what is going on.

For the most part, I DON'T.

I was on the very fringe of people you would call hipster during my New York years, I was older than most of my friends and came from that classic rock upbringing that so many suburban white kids come from while growing up in the northeast.I was raised on a steady diet of Led Zeppelin, The Doors and narrow playlists of FM. I never could bring myself to liking The Smiths or the Postal Service or Bjork. Mostly, I just hung out with artists/musicians in NYC and considered myself one of them.

I was influenced to the point of expanding my horizons during this time by two people who were in my band (The Ten Paces), Alex and Dave. Both of these guys liked everything from bluegrass to post punk to alt country to early new wave and I gravitated towards what they were listening to. I'm glad to have met those two, because since then, my horizon line has plateaued. I have caught on to several of the bands my wife likes as well, like Wilco and Allison Krauss...but from about 2004 on....nothing that the hipsters(most of which are 15 years younger than me at this point) like, has my keyboard jumping and my ears peeled.

The point I'm trying to make here is that so much of my research for this blog is web based..and the bands making the scene these days make me want to go all Pete Townshend on them and bust up the stage. Its either Grizzly Bear or The Black Eyed Peas...its either Phoenix or the Jonas Brothers. There is no real place for melodic hard/bluesy rock on the web....its either too metal, too bluesy, screamed out, dischordant, danceable, full of block rockin beats and club lingo or soaked in the dreaded hip hop. And the rock news is slim or retreaded...another Kiss update?

I don't want this blog to be music news and I don't want it to be a bitchfest from some old crotchety rocker either. I try to keep it sarcastic,funny..full of lists, stories, a little hype and reviews now and again.

I don't know who is out there besides the bloggers I hear from regularly (you know who you are) but I hear from no one. If you read...LET ME KNOW. I'm not doing this to be some famewhore...I do it because I love to write...and I love to rock. Period.
But why come by regularly and NEVER comment...NEVER disagree?! I don't get it.

Don't make me bored or boring. COMMENTS FUEL BLOGS! Any blogger will tell you that. Indulge me and stop shutting up.

And I will get back to what I do best as soon as this lull passes.


  1. Having read your post, I can certainly relate to the sentiments expressed. I have fairly broad listening tastes that stem from childhood influences, friends and acquaintances. I have worked as a musician as well. Naively, I have always thought that the masses would demand more from artists and embrace people who wanted to push music in a more interesting direction. Instead, too many are content with Lady Gaga wrapping herself around the "peeler pole". There are still people who give a damn about the state of contemporary culture and try to send positive messages out via the internet.

    Here's where it gets tricky.

    For every person that can form proper sentences, has a thoughtful approach to their subject matter and is a genuinely entertaining writer (like yourself) , there are twenty that use numeric characters in place of words, cannot write and put out negative messages in an effort to garner attention.

    Worse than this, a lot of folks have simply lost their attention span and don't read past the first sentence.

    It's tough when you put something out there and receive little or no response. I wondered if anyone outside of a small group of music lovers even paid attention to what I was posting. Didn't seem to be much point in firing music reviews into the abyss.

    Out of the blue, I was pleasantly surprised.

    Recently,I wrote about Jim Croce and made mention of the great contributions that his guitarist, Maury Muehleisen, made to his music. The next day, i received an e-mail from Maury's sister, Mary, who wrote to tell me how touched she was by my kind words about her brother (and Jim). She was pleased to see another generation discovering the material and keeping their memory alive.

    Everything that you put out there speaks to someone. Many just simply don't take the time to give you feedback about it.

    Keep writing man. Or to paraphrase Bruce Cockburn, keep kicking at the darkness until it bleeds daylight.

  2. Seano, I havent been with you very long altho I have read your posts on Laylas site as well as others. You have so much to offer at your age. I appreciate your insight to the music I grew up with and love so much. I think sometimes we all need to reflect and see what matters to us most. maybe this is where you belong and maybe not. I would say it is. Dig deep and give us what you long to give. You would not have started this if it didnt mean somethin to you.

  3. Oh by the way thanks for the blog and keep up the good work.

  4. Even though I don't comment often, I'm an avid reader. I quite enjoy reading your blog. My wife & I just had a little girl on June 1st so my life is a bit upside down at the moment until we get our little one on a schedule. Once that happens I hope to start commenting a bit more...

    Oh I know it's the wrong post to add this comment on but a couple more rain songs:

    Rain - Dragon
    Another Rainy Day in NY City - Chicago

  5. Sean and Perplexio, Thanks for the encouragement. I know you are both out there, great bloggers in your own right. Perplexio, congrats on the little one! Good times ahead!

  6. Hey man, I hear you. Nowadays, Facebook and Twitter seem to be taking more people's already short attention spans and I sometimes wonder why I blog. But I think we blog for the few who do give a crap and have stumbled into our little universes. It may not be a mass audience, but it's a devoted audience. And I think for everyone who posts a comment there are 10-30 who don't. That's a guess but who knows?

    Regarding your upbringing and musical tastes, have you read Fargo Rock City? I am half way through and I think you will connect with it like I am!