Saturday, 31 March 2012

In Soviet Russia the band is with you!

Oh hi there!

C.J here.

I was having a little drink and a bit of a think the other evening about several things. The kind of things that need to be in a list!

1) Why the fuck have I been literally falling apart over the last week?
Seriously! I've been bitten by insects, hit with hammers, stabbed by knives, slapped by pensioners (Admittedly not so much a this week only thing but a bi-weekly occurrence what with my sexy lifestyle and fondness for hanging around Bingo halls!) and run over!

"Walk it off Hixon...
and then after you've cleaned yourself up,
have a stroll and try to get over yourself also!"

Is the phrase that's been running over and over in my head the past seven days or so. Needless to say the next round of the world's most recorded drinking session will involve quite a bit of bitching and moaning from my corner... In addition to me complaining about these latest ailments that is!

2) Why is this shirt still available to order at a fantastic bargain price of merely £14.35?

I would have assumed that such a delicious and most certainly sort after item would be well out of print by now?
It is most likely that such a gorgeous, high quality product for sale at such a bargain price appears too good to be true to your average Internet Joe! Yest they are really that awesome for that little! Buy one of these fabulous items today and help an aging podcaster in Baltimore, Maryland buy some fucking Red Bull or bandannas or something. I was also thinking about how much I love that fact that they are still available to order, direct to your door!


Honest! I know some people say that kind of thing all of the time. In fact, it's the kind of line that people that don't actually like music at all use all of the time!
This is not a new concept for me. I have met with hundreds of people that actually have a career in the so called "music industry" that actually don't have any fucking clue about, not only the way songs are structured but also what songs they are making money of off are actually about!

They listen to the money making format. Something I am glad to say has eluded myself for many years. Now, with that said, I have a shit load of CDs. How can I say that the big nasty money making industry's format has eluded me when I have what is easily a few thousand pounds worth of compact discs in my possession?

Ok, I understand the confusion here. Let me quantify my reasoning a little bit.
There's nothing wrong with buying music. I'm all for it! I think that if an artist makes something that you like, you should pay for it.
But let's say that a painter was given £20 for paint from a guy, for the purposes of this story we'll call him Clive. So, Clive gives the painter £20 so he can paint a picture of whatever he wanted. Let's say a bowl of fruit. Clive's only condition is that when the painter is finished he wants to make and sell copies. Then let's say that Clive doesn't like the painting and would much prefer it if the bowl of fruit looked more like a nude portrait of me. He tells the painter to do it again but more like he wants. No £20 this time "We had a deal!" says Clive the bastard!

Alright, that sounds stupid. But it actually happens a lot more than you think in the so called music industry. The record company men only really have a one in ten chance of making money from an artist (an accepted amount in their world!)
So what do they do, re-hash old hits via poor young things that are roped into ridiculous contracts that means when the time comes to leave the record label they own zero percent of their work. Now that sounds stupid, but it actually happens a lot more than you think!

I love going to gigs. When a band plays live they take a slender amount of profit from the ticket sales (If any!) They make much more return on merchandise!
I love seeing independent artists live and handing over cash knowing that a good fifty to seventy percent of it is going to end up in their pocket! Once at a gig, I popped a fiver in a pint glass for one Jeff Rosenstock of Bomb The Music Industry! and Quote Unquote Records (Home of L.I.P faves and all round Atlantan sweethearts The Wild!) all the while resisting the urge to say to him "Go on love, buy yourself something pretty!" at the same time knowing he was going to spend that money on beer. Beer for himself! Beer that he earned!

I believe you should pay the artist directly and what a great time to be doing so!
The Internet is full of ways to connect with your faves!
Incidentally Quote Unquote Records is a donation based online record company! Pay what you feel it's worth!
Bandcamp is another, hell you can even buy a physical CD or a vinyls directly from most independent artists websites!
Now that sounds brilliant and it actually happens a lot more than you think!
There are fifty million different ways of listening to music online before you commit to throwing down some hard earned money so why on earth are people still settling for the unremarkable pap spouted out over the top forty. Some naive young thing squawking a five time number one hit from the eighties with an acoustic guitar backing all so the decision makers rattling around the parent company's corporate headquarters can have a Christmas number one, disgusting and expensive brandy and another royalty associated with a brand of celebrity perfume that in reality smells like Simon Cowell's ball bag, yet has a contract bound pop starlet on the label...


Oh that reminds me! Are you thinking about getting a tattoo of some brush script or gothic lettering somewhere about your person but can't decide what you want it to say?

Got it here mate:

"The difference between someone that
claims to like the generic "X-Factor's Got Talent Idol" and
someone that doesn't, is the ability to engage
their brains in ways other than:
Eat, Shit, Telly, Sleep, Repeat.
If you really believe that Mr Cowell's pop prodigy's are
deep and insightful artists, you are a sheep.
You can't think for yourself
and you're far less likely to try
anything daring or adventurous in the sack!"

Ok? Now, I understand that I am tarring a majority of people with one big fat brush and I'm sure that there are small pockets of people that are the exceptions that prove the rule. For example, our very own free legal advisor Mr Scotto White likes all music. Although we suspect that might be some kind of legal requirement. My point is that I have more respect for those artists and bands trying to do things on their own terms without the easy quick fix and fat cheques from the Clives in the world.
I also have more respect for the fans that take the time to find, enjoy and compensate these independent artists for their work.

That's one reason I love talking to the folks that contribute their work to our show, and I love listening to how they progress. You could do worse than sling $5 in a virtual pint glass and grab The Wild - A Collection for a selection of tracks from different recordings that is "Punk rock that makes you feel good like good punk rock should! Get into it!!!" and if you haven't splashed out a mere £7 for the pop music covers album Eavesdropping By Dr John Smith then you're mental. Sorry it's true.
And I do get that after a big rant about music on the Internet that not everyone is flush with virtual electronic money, you can have a free listen to Wrecked Vessels by B-Sydes or even dip your ear into the pool that is some of the weird and wonderful works that LuKuS is cooking up!

Just turn the fucking telly off and enjoy something with substance, something that has a heart, a soul, a mind, a penchant for murdering people and a filthy sense of humour!

So to conclude, why does the money making format elude me so much?

I, like many others make music for me to enjoy... Clive can go fuck himself. It actually happens a lot more than you think!


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