Just thinking about Stuff

Jerry Lucky Commentary January 2009

Copyright Jerry Lucky © 2009 All Rights Reserved

 

At this time of year I can’t help but get a little reflective about the way things could be or even perhaps should be. There are all the

news and sports shows looking back on the year’s top stories. The various countdowns for music, fashion, etc. This is after all the

beginning of a new year. A time where we many times tend to take stock of what happened and what could yet happen. We look ahead to a year full of possibilities and opportunities. Laid out in front of us are 12 months...52 weeks...365 days…8760 hours...525,600 minutes…31,536,000 seconds to do something with.

 

This is typically the time of year to make resolutions. In the dictionary resolution is defined as “a course of action decided upon; a fixed purpose” or “the act of solving or settling a problem” or “a firm decision to do or not do something.” So if I take that approach and apply it to the music world I enjoy, progressive rock, what does that mean. Well here’s my wish list for 2009, in no particular order.

 

I wish Tony Banks would write his progressive rock music with the same approach he used to write his orchestral CD Seven. The disc features all the hallmarks of any symphonic prog work, done simply with orchestral instruments. While listening to the disc, I took solace in the fact that Tony can still write like that, I only wish he’d applied the same approach to his pop music and not felt that he had to separate the two. Where does that kind of artificial separation of styles come from anyway?

 

While I’m thinking about Genesis, I wish they would write some new stuff. Forget about the touring and everything else, just write some new music and put it out there for the fans. It’s not like they actually need the money, I’m sure they’re all doing quite comfortably, thank you very much. But surely there’s no harm it popping out a few new tunes, with no pressure on having a hit.

 

Oh and if they did that, I wish they’d discover where they mislaid their 12-string guitars. While watching the 2-disc reissues of the first 5 Genesis albums I was profoundly struck by how significant a role the 12-string played in their music. There were times where there were three of them going, Tony, Steve and Mike! And now there’s virtually none. I don’t know if I can think of too many bands who’ve made such a dramatic musical shift as that. Look in the closets…look under the beds…check in the cupboards…I’m sure those 12-string guitars are there somewhere. Dust’em off and put’em to good use once again.

 

I wish that people would come to their senses about iTunes. Being duped into thinking that 99¢ per song is a good deal is such a mistake. Especially when so little of that money actually goes to the artist who wrote the song. When you look at the math, in round figures Apple gets 30¢ of every down load and the record company gets 70¢ out of which they pay the artist a measly 12¢ or so. I simply refuse to accept that Apple deserves twice as much as the artist for simply providing the digital pipe. And even harder still to swallow is that the major label keeps more than 55¢ per tune. Truth is the artist makes more money through royalties when you by the CD. And even more if you buy the disc directly. Paying 99¢ per tune is a rip-off even more so when you consider you get no case or liner notes.

 

I wish that people would stop using the term “neo-prog.” If you’ve ready any of my diatribes, you’ll know I have a strong dislike for the term. Whether you think you are using the term to describe a style of music or using it to describe a time of music, neither holds any water what-so-ever. A quick scan of the 13-misconceptions about “neo-prog” will I think put both uses to rest (RIP) once and for all.

 

And lastly I wish more people would come to appreciate progressive rock music and not speak so disparagingly about it. Hey I’ve got a deal…we won’t say anything bad about what other people listen to and they can simply do the same. Harmony? Well call me a cynic, but I don’t hold out much hope. They say that out of 10 people who make New Year’s resolutions, 8 won’t keep them for more than a month. Well I’m gonna do my best to prove them wrong.

Jerry Lucky

(1/1/09)

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