Tracking the Revolution

If you want to see the source behind one of my inspirations for writing this blog then you need look no further than this editorial “Revolution: Now” penned by Rock and Roll super fan and Bomp Records Grand Pooh Bah Greg Shaw. What I like about Shaw’s outlook on Rock and Roll is that he refuses to label it, pigeonhole it, or otherwise get bogged down in classifying any of Rock’s supposed genres like a botanist classifying some plant species. I agree wholeheartedly with his opinion that “rock and roll itself should be seen not as a genre, not as a mere noun or even a verb, but also as a process.” That “process” is what The Rock and Roll Report hopes to be all about. The conditions are ripe for the revolution that Shaw writes about (and in fact in a lot of ways it has already begun), the evidence is out there, you just might not notice it amongst the background noise of “American Idol” and Eminem. There are amazing record labels, bands, clubs, websites and blogs showing the way. Major, indie, garage, alternative, retro. These are just smokescreens hiding some great music. Check it out. Go to your local clubs. Start a band. Buy some CD’s from some of these cool new bands. Start a rock and roll radio show at your local community radio station or on the internet. Read and contribute to The Rock and Roll Report or any other website/blog out there and show the way. Have fun. Rock and Roll is here to stay. Sometimes you just have to look harder to find it. Let’s look together.

1 Comment

  1. Boy you are indeed optimistic. To think that rock-and-roll has anything left in it is, well, admirable in it’s hopefulness.

    In my opinion you’re missing that one thing that sets today’s younger people (those who would be making new rock-and-roll), these kids are the first generation to really truly be raised by television. Sure we all had TV as a kid, but never before has the psychological engineering behind the ads, the shows (cartoons, movies, and now games), and the merchanidise, AND THE MUSIC, been so well orchestrated between so many various forms of media.

    The “Revolution: Now” article touches briefly on this with the mention of cell phones and other distractions. But the problem is much deeper. Look at the toys that kids play with these days (and have been for 20 years now): you won’t see Lego, Tinker Toys – hardly ANY creative-process toys at all. It’s all merchandise; it all has a pre-determined affiliation with some character, logo, and corporation.

    As long as the mind-set of needing to belong to a gruops (read: “Gansta”) is actively pushed on young people, the level of creativity in society in general will decline. Rock-and-Roll is the canary in the mine, the first to die. The “Revolution: Now” article metnions local bands that try for some of the energy of the early punk days, or pop from the 60’s… as long as this is true, rock will die of inbreeding. How many bands today sounds JUST LIKE the Beatles in the 60’s? It’s really sad. Yes the Beatles were great, but that was 40 (cough!) years ago!

    I’ve always believed that the true grit of rock is in rebellion. And in the sense of rebellion against the musical status-quo, rock is truly dead. If a group of musicians these days wants to carve out new territory, they get into some jazz, electronica, or use influences from foreign music. If they are hoping to land a fat deal with a major label, they play rock-and-roll.

    Sure, reflection has always been a part of rock. But these days, it IS rock.

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