Music On The Goe

David Goe on music

Follow David's weekly Out & About column ON THE GOE
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Stunt Albums Prove There’s Dying Interest in New Music

By David Goe
Friday, September 19, 2014

Big news from the music world this past week was oligarchic rock band U2 sending out some junk mail in the form of its new album “Songs of Innocence,” to over a half a billion iTunes users.

If you have an iTunes account you have the album, whether you want it or not.

“Songs of Innocence” is neither a good album nor bad album. It merely exists like the male enhancement pill emails and magic weight loss emails in your spam folder.

The quality of U2’s latest release is not as important as is the bigger issue here. The latest in a disturbing new trend of stunt album releases (see Beyonce’s surprise album release), “Songs of Innocence” proves that big music has no interest in developing new music and is perfectly happy pimping tried-and-true music from well-regarded and established performers.

Big music doesn’t care about you or what you want. It cares about risk-free investments and guaranteed sales.

Big record labels such as Interscope and distributors like Apple iTunes are content making their nut on releases such as “Songs of Innocence.” Apple reportedly budgeted $100 million to buy and promote the album from U2 and Interscope, and committed over $9 million just on promotion.

Just let that sink in for a minute. $100 million dollars for one 11-song album.

It’s a staggering sum of money and it makes you wonder, is that money well spent?

The conversation online seems to center on the question: Is U2 leading the way to a new way of doing business? To answer unequivocally, hell no.

The only reason why U2 can pull off something like this is because they are the biggest band on the planet. Same goes for other performers such as Beyonce, Jay-Z, Radiohead, Trent Reznor and others who have tried similar release stunts. The entire release of “Songs of Innocence” feels gimmicky.

Let’s call this what it is, a pricey advertising campaign for Apple products. Releasing the album in conjunction with the new iPhone and Apple watch announcements at the tech giant’s annual keynote event does more for Apple than for the music industry.

Sure, U2 makes out pretty well, but what about the rest of the music industry? Last time I checked it’s still stuck in limbo with no direction, and I don’t see this move bringing it back from the edge.

Certainly, this stunt has got people talking, but the loudest voices are overwhelmingly negative. So much so that it has prompted Apple to create a specific web page with instruction on how to remove “Songs of Innocence” from your iTunes music library.

At the end of the day you have to ask, was it worth it? Publicity wise, yes, it was a hit.

As a music fan you can’t escape this story. But the whole event leaves you wanting more. When did music become a punch line? When did it become a tabloid headline? What happened to the bands and music that spoke for generations?

What happened to bands like the 1980s version of U2?

Music is more homogeneous than ever, there’s less variety than ever, and sales are lower than ever. And what’s the industry’s solution? Force-feeding the entire world an album people didn’t necessarily want? That doesn’t seem like a winning strategy.

The business model that helped U2 become the world’s biggest band is long gone. But instead of trying to figure out how to incubate the next great band, the industry has slipped into bed with Apple to hock smart phones and wearable technology.

That should make you upset. An art form that you bleed and cry for is dying at its soul and all we have to show for it is an ad campaign and a couple megabytes of hard drive space.

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Fantasy Bands - The Best Lineups So Far

By David Goe
Friday, September 12, 2014

Believe it or not, fantasy bands are still trickling in to my email inbox. So far here are the lineups (including mine for comparison). There are a lot of interesting groups here including Brian's band Stanky Hoe's, which I'm guessing smells like the dumpster behind a Las Vegas strip club. Keep sending in you fantasy bands and I'll keep posting them for everyone to tear apart. Send your lineups to david.w.goe@gmail.com.

Gay Older Brother - my band
Flex - Dave Grohl $10
Bass - Paul McCartney $10
Guitar - Johnny Greenwood $6
Lead Singer - Debbie Harry $5
Drummer - ?uestlove $4

Baptism by Fire - Sent in by Doug
Guitarist - Buddy Guy - $7
Drummer - Neil Peart - $10
Bass - Tina Weymouth - $4
Flex - Angus Young - $7
Lead Singer - Roger Daltry - $7

Stanky Hoe's - Sent in by Brian
Lead Singer - Sammy Hagar $8 (vocal powerhouse, songwriter)
Guitarist - Steve Vai $7 (OK, he lost to Ralph Macchio in the movie "Crossroads", but he's practiced a lot since then, and still going strong)
Bassist - Michael Anthony Sobolewski $6 (maybe not the greatest bassist ever, but a key addition to this group)
Drummer - Topper Headon $5 (i needed a strong drummer and a hearty partier)
Flex - Gene Simmons $7 (he can market the band like no one before, and a is an excellent backup for when Michael Anthony gets too wasted)

Ellen DeGenesis Project - Sent in by Lindsey
Drummer - Phil Collins $8
Bass - Roger Waters $8
Guitar - St. Vincent $6
Lead Singer - Art Garfunkel $6
Flex - Nels Cline $6

Double Treble - Sent in by Mike
Lead Singer - Adele $9
Flex - Whitney Houston $9
Guitar - Les Paul $7
Bass - Kim Deal $6
Drummer - ?uestlove $4

Smoke Show - Sent in by Matt
Lead Singer - John Lennon $10
Flex - Willie Nelson $8
Guitar - Frank Zappa $7
Bass - Mark Hopus $3
Drummer - Stewart Copeland $7

Black and White and Black - Sent in by Trent
Lead Singer - Roy Orbison $9
Guitar - Jack White $7
Flex - Johnny Cash $7
Bass - Alex James $5
Drummer - Ginger Baker $7

Adult Onesie - Sent in by Keith
Drummer - Carter Beauford $8
Guitar - Jerry Garcia $8
Lead Singer - Sly Stone $5
Bass - Phil Lynott $7
Flex - David Bowie $7

Dregs of Society - Sent in by Taylor 
Lead Singer - Iggy Pop $5
Guitar - J Mascis $6
Bass - Lemmy $8
Drummer - Chad Smith $7
Flex - Tom Morello $9

Michael Michael John John James - Sent in by Charlie
Lead Singer - Michael Jackson $10
Drummer - Michael Shrieve $6
Bass - John Deacon $5
Guitar - John Frusciante $6
Flex - James Jamerson $8

 

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Create Your Fantasy Band

By David Goe
Thursday, September 4, 2014

The premise is simple. If you could pick five artists, dead or alive, to form the ultimate band, who would they be, and what would the band be called?

Rule 1. You need to roster a band member at the following positions: lead signer, guitarist, bassist, drummer. You also have a flex position, which you can fill with anyone. 

Rule 2.  In each position, band members cost anywhere between $1 and $10 and you only have $35 to spend on the entire fantasy band. Obviously $10 band members are the cream of the crop so it would be impossible to field a band of Mick Jaggar, Duane Allman, Flea, John Bonham, and John Lennon. Just like in real fantasy football, winning managers draft wisely.

Obviously the following list is incomplete. If you want to add someone to your fantasy band not on this list then do it. Assign them a fair price and justify it. Have fun!


Lead Singers

  • John Lennon $10
  • Mick Jaggar $10
  • Aretha Franklin $10
  • Freddie Mercury $10
  • Robert Plant $10
  • Michael Jackson $10
  • Otis Redding $10
  • Sam Cooke $10
  • Bob Dylan $9
  • Marvin Gaye $9
  • Elvis Presley $9
  • Roy Orbison $9
  • Ray Charles $9
  • Adele $9
  • Stevie Wonder $9
  • Jim Morrison $9
  • Al Green $9
  • Janis Jopelin $9
  • Chris Cornell $9
  • James Brown $9
  • Whitney Houston $9
  • Little Richard $8
  • Morrissey $8
  • Elton John $8
  • Smokey Robinson $8
  • Jeff Buckley $8
  • Ozzy Osborne $8
  • Tina Turner $8
  • Steven Tyler $8
  • Bono $8
  • Kurt Cobain $8
  • Stevie Nicks $8
  • Axl Rose $8
  • Bruce Springsteen $8
  • Neil Young $8
  • Hank Williams $7
  • Eddie Vedder $7
  • Roger Daltrey $7
  • Gwen Stefani $7
  • David Bowie $7
  • Johnny Cash $7
  • Brian Wilson $7
  • Pat Benatar $6
  • Art Garfunkel $6
  • Steve Perry $6
  • Christina Aguiler $6
  • Levon Helm $6
  • Tom Waits $5
  • Sly Stone $5
  • Iggy Pop $5
  • James Mercer $5
  • Debbie Harry $5
  • Thom Yorke $5
  • Mary J. Blige $5
  • Dion $5
  • Buddy Holly $5
  • Bjork $4
  • James Taylor $4
     

Guitarists

  • Jimi Hendrix $10
  • Jimmy Page $10
  • Eric Clapton $10
  • Stevie Ray Vaughan $10
  • Eddie Van Halen $9
  • Jeff Beck $9
  • Prince $9
  • Tom Morello $9
  • David Gilmour $9
  • George Harrison $9
  • Duane Allman $9
  • Jerry Garcia $8
  • Carlos Santana $8
  • Randy Rhoads $8
  • Brian May $8
  • Keith Richards $8
  • Mark Knopfler $8
  • Robbie Robertson $8
  • Derek Trucks $8
  • Willie Nelson $8
  • Angus Young $7
  • Billy Gibbons $7
  • The Edge $7
  • Lindsey Buckingham $7
  • Thurston Moore $7
  • Bonnie Raitt $7
  • Kirt Hammett $7
  • Les Paul $7
  • Chuck Berry $7
  • Dimebag Darrell $7
  • Slash $7
  • Buddy Guy $7
  • Jack White $7
  • Dick Dale $7
  • Joe Perry $7
  • Frank Zappa $7
  • St. Vincent $6
  • Joe Walsh $6
  • Dan Auerbach $6
  • Nels Cline $6
  • Johnny Marr $6
  • Peter Buck $6
  • Carl Perkins $6
  • J Mascis $6
  • Paul Simon $6
  • Pete Townshend $6
  • John Frusciante $6
  • Johnny Greenwood $6
  • Johnny Ramone $6
  • Joni Mitchell $5
     

Bassist:

  • Paul McCartney $10
  • John Paul Jones $10
  • John Entwistle $9
  • Flea $9
  • Les Claypool $9
  • Bootsy Collins $9
  • James Jamerson $8
  • Lemmy $8
  • Leland Sklar $8
  • Roger Waters $8
  • Gene Simmons $7
  • Andy Rourke $7
  • Phil Lynott $7
  • Chris Wolstenhole $7
  • Alex James $6
  • Kim Deal $6
  • Krist Noveselic $6
  • John Deacon $5
  • Chris Squire $5
  • Tina Weymouth $4
  • Mike Watt $4
  • Mark Hoppus $3
     

Drummers:

  • John Bonham $10
  • Neil Peart $10
  • Dave Grohl $10
  • Keith Moon $9
  • Ringo Starr $8
  • Buddy Rich $8
  • Phil Collins $8
  • Carter Beauford $8
  • Ginger Baker $7
  • Stewart Copeland $7
  • Chad Smith $7
  • Lars Ulrich $6
  • Bill Ward $6
  • Michael Shrieve $6
  • Topper Headon $5
  • Robo $4
  • ?ueslove $4
  • Meg White $3
  • Cindy Blackman $3
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Weekend’s Best Bets

By David Goe
Friday, August 29, 2014

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Jamestown Revival Headline Grand Junction Off Road Mountain Bike Race

By David Goe
Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The Grand Junction Off-Road mountain-bike race is back for year two and with it comes another good music series. Four bands will play this Saturday (8/30) on Main Street in Grand Junction. Local crews Poke Squid and The Williams Brothers Band will play, along with Wild Party, and headliner Jamestown Revival. 

Speaking of Jamestown Revival, check out this Q&A from fellow Sentinel contributor Melinda Mawdsley. The band talks about childhood friendships, music influences, and moving from Austin Texas to California. Read the full interview here ahead of Saturday's free concert or listen to their music and watch more videos of the band here

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