10 November 2005

An Exercise in Stupidity -or- How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Hate Everything.

Yesterday, a friend sent me the latest email that sprung from the bowels of hipster central NY. Obviously as an affront to my patronage of certain bands... I responded. See below.

On 11/10/05, ----- wrote:

If you made me read this moron's ravings, I'm going to make you read my rebuttal: read in original email (bold).

On 11/9/05, --- wrote:

From Ron Lefsetz:

Do Me A Favor

My phone and e-mail have been ringing about U2 and the Stones. I have no desire to see them. Should I feel bad about that? U2's indoor tour for "Achtung Baby" was one of the best I've ever seen. Right up there with the Who performing "Tommy" at the Fillmore East. But I justdon't want to hang with those people. Newly-rich Gen X'ers reliving their college days. Telling themselves how they still believe on the long walk back from the arena to their SUVs. If you can afford to waste all thatmoney on a U2 show you're inherently a disbeliever. You sold out to the system long ago.

This is just judgemental nonsense. Nothing to do with the bands, a jump to nonsequential reasoning about the people who buy the tickets, and it sounds like sour grapes. What's wrong with seeing our favorite bands play? Even if the experiences has changed? Does anyone rank on Clemens because his artilery has changed with age? and instead of being a straight power pitcher, he's more wiley? I think you're really just more angry that you're working at McDonalds.

Rock is about an energy. A limit-testing. Sure, Sly Stone's performances were a celebration, but there was this edgy sexuality that had youwrithing. It was all about the moment. There was no nostalgia involved.

So because tickets are expensive and they're older... there's no energy? Nostalgia? These aren't reunion shows. There's old and new material. I don't understand you. This isn't like seeing Lynyrd Skynyrd with 2 of the original members...

But what's worse is the Stones. What would possess someone to pay $450 to see these old farts, going through the motions. Give the people what they want.

They are giving the people what they want! I got a news flash for you, buddy; if you charge $450 for something, and that something sells out... do people want it? I'm still surprised McD's even hired you with this amazing grasp on economics you have.

Ray Davies said it ironically. The Stones are living it. And the people in attendance. With their one of everything. A mini-mansion, a vacation home, an SUV, a Mercedes, a Harley. This show is another notch in their belt. These shows don't represent anything I got hooked on music FOR!

Awwww, boo hooo. I hate everyone! What's wrong with this guy?

Music was an escape from society. A place where I went to lick my wounds.

It sounds like you've got quite a few. Would you like to lay down on my couch and start with your childhood? I promise the Stones and U2 won't hurt you. This is a safe place.

A place where like-minded people resided. Castaways from society. AM radio was for the mainstream. We had our FM. And our Fillmores. And our BitterEnds. And our Roxys.

Can we go back to the part where you ripped on Nostalgia? Oh, you want to keep going? Okay.

I don't think most people going to see the Stones ever partook of shows back then.

Is that English? Canadian?

It was just too dangerous. Go down to the East Village on a weeknight?On ANY night?

Ah yes, I fondly remember the days when the Stones played a 6 month residency in the East Village. Whew, those were wild days. Wait... what?

U2 and the Stones are business.

Yup, right on front of every other band.

If you doubt me, then why do you have to join a fan club to buy the theoretically good seats for U2's shows. Bruce Springsteen doesn't do this.

Weren't we just saying something about nostalgia tours? Springsteen? He's okay? I'm confused, man.

And check the Stones' merchandise display.Who'd wear this shit?

Wow, what prose! You are really hammering the point home now! I HATE CLOTHES!

Fuck 'em all. The major labels. Clear Channel. Everybody justifying their behavior on the past. The music business is just as bad as the movie business. Needing to preserve its release WINDOWS!

I finally figured it out-- Remember the guy behind Woody Allen rambling about Marshall McLuhan in Annie Hall? You're his son.

Instead of Edgar Bronfman, Jr. railing how he's not getting enough money fromXM I'd like to see him testifying in the press how fucking great the service is. But if he was ever a music fan, he's forgotten.

Can I ask a question? What the hell is this article about?!

Give Jimmy Iovine credit for his success. But isn't the 50 Cent movie just a replica of "8 Mile"? Haven't we literally seen this movie before? Even if people go, how good a taste does it leave in one's mouth?


The whole major business is moldy and decrepit. It's so far from theunderpinnings of the modern era, what this edifice was built upon, it's laughable.

You've got me laughing, for one.

First and foremost it's about music. It's not about hair.


Or appearances onTV.

Ed Sullivan.

Or motherfucking Grammy awards.

Never was.

It's about being in a club, in the dark, and hearing a sound that transports you.

Oh I get it, your 'e' is kicking in. Don't mind me. (No, I won't touch your hair. I don't care how groovy it feels)

I don't mind following my favorite act from club to arena. If they give a little time to me.

I understand, we all need rules, space. This is what makes you such a rebellious outcast who longs for the Fillmore...

If they're not touring arenas on their FIRST ALBUM! Give me a little time with them. Before the machine eats them up and they wonder what they're in it for to begin with. Outside a Poquito Mas in Burbank today I heard the Subdudes' "Do Me A Favor"on XM's Cafe. You've probably never heard it, never mind are aware of the band. But this is something I want to see live. A group of people doing it for the JOY! That joy is contagious.

Apparently, not contagious enough. And how about when the Subdudes play Madison Square Garden, you'll be the idiot raving in the parking lot about how they sold out.

The more ticket prices go up, the more they hype the big acts, the less I care.

I sincerely doubt it, since you just keep talking and talking, presumably, about how much you hate it.

Madonna. Give me a break. A desperate fortysomething worried her career istanking makes a dance record. She's got no soul. If we cut her open I think we'd find wires. And don't give me that male/female shit. Did you ever see Laura Nyro? She touched your soul. But now I'm off point.

We crossed that bridge a long time ago, mon frere.

I'm just saying real music fans are tired.

Ever met one?

They don't want to go to the big shows. Everything seems like a rerun. Like Todd Rundgren said in the seventies, can't we go back to the bars?

Real music fans are the ones who love their music, and support it, and don't feel the need to go around trashing other people's music, and how they choose to support them. You want to tell me that some dude living in his 60's who saw the Stones at Altemont, now lives with a wife and kids, and is excited to see them play again, and will shell out the $450 isn't a music fan?

Put down the keyboard. Seriously.


Blogger Robert said...

Based on what I just read, Ron Lefsetz is a horrible writer, who makes stupid, clich├ęd arguments. From what I've heard, "his intense brilliance captivates readers from Steven Tyler to Rick Nielsen to Bryan Adams to Quincy Jones?!" Are you fuckin' serious? This guy is bitching about the ridiculousness of old bands touring and his credibility rests on the singer of Aerosmith, the guitar player for Cheap Trick and Bryan Adams?!?!?!?! I have no idea what Quincy Jones is doing now, but I guarantee he isn't playing small nightclubs.

10:03 AM  
Anonymous Dorf said...

Schmuck: "But now I'm off point."

Blogger (I'd type your name, but I gorget if this is anonymous or not): "We crossed that bridge a long time ago, mon frere."

Classic. Hilarious.

I was about to go on a diatribe about how there are tons of real music fans out there who go to see shows at big arenas (bands like Phish, Widespread Panic, String Cheese, etc.). I'll leave it at that instead of writing an essaey, but the point is that they go because the music moves them, same as Lefsetz.

Well, the same goes for most of those old folks who go to see the Stones these days. That they can afford to do so doesn't make them any less 'real,' and I think it's ridiculous to generalize by saying that none of them would have gone to see a Stones show in the East Village in the '70's because they would've been afraid. They were probably the same people he was tripping with when he was a young, rebellious hippie, it's just that they were able to move on with their lives. What a tool.

10:36 AM  

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