Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Et Tu, Loverboy?

Even when I was 20-*cough*, and dead certain of my infallible taste and critical acumen, I thought some of the unending bitching about music "credibility" was silly.

Now, it just seems pathetic.

I mean, seriously, seriously pathetic. I mean, I stumble onto this website with an article by Tim McMahan, who, writing about a wholly unrelated event/artist, offers this:
Well, my plan was to go to Camera Obscura at The Slowdown tonight after the Memorial Park wankfest featuring Loverboy and Pat Benatar. Seeing as I live a few blocks from the park, I feel obligated to be there if only to protect my home from potential looters.
I won't link, I don't wanna drive traffic to him. Although, he did give a positive review to my brother-in-law's band's show, so...that's a brownie point. He makes a few more snarky comments, but who cares?

I read that paragraph over 3 times, just to try to decide if  Tim McMahan is really just that scared of mullets, or if he's just that insecure in talking about what he does like, that he has to frame it in what he doesn't. It seems (reading between the lines) he's required to see this Loverboy/Pat Benetar show, and feels gypped that he has to miss Camera Obscura. OK, fine, of course, he just can't say "I'm required to see this show for my job," which, I guess, would seem deeply uncool and non-"indie." Nope, let's turn it into a wisecrack about Loverboy and the people who would want to see them.

How pathetic.

Now, please be aware, I could give two shits about Loverboy. Really. I'm sure I love a ton, I mean a metric ton (he doesn't seem the Rush or Springsteen type) of music that McMahan reviles, but I just have no opinion on this particular group of Canucks. I do have a warm spot for Working For the Weekend, as it was huge (the high point of their career, frankly) when I was in FIFTH GRADE. Which would lead me to guess, that Mr. McMahan probably wasn't even alive (or too young) when they were a household, or as close as they ever got, name. It's a catchy, fun, non-challenging song that you can dance to, as almost every "hit" single known to man.

It's dumb, no argument. Fun? Yeah, I think so. It reminds me of riding bikes and being stupid as a 10 year old. I'm sure for folks a little older than me, it reminds them of cruising around in the Summer, being stupid and looking for someone to buy beer.

Every generation should have that, will have it, and there's nothing wrong with it. Do I own any Loverboy? No. Do I intend to buy any Loverboy? No. Do I tap my toe and hum along to Working For the Weekend when i hear it? Oh hell yes.

I bet McMahan has a similar reaction to Gin Blossom's Hey Jealousy, or Urge Overkill's Sister Havana. The point being, most of the people at that show aren't there because they are HUGE Loverboy fans, or that the band is genius, but because they're going to play songs that remind them of a simpler, easier time in their lives when they could like a song because it was, flat out, catchy.

We won't even get into Benetar, who I do own music by...because she's pretty awesome.

I guess I just find it ridiculous that this guy still feels the need to prove his "indie cred" by taking a shot a Loverboy, for God's sake. A band that hasn't charted an album since 1987 (that would be more than a quarter of a century ago), and most people wouldn't even know was still together if they didn't frequent State Fairs. Let me put it this way, the last time Loverboy had any sort of, non-nostalgic, impact on popular culture, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, and Tim Burton's Batman were still 2 years away from release.

I mean, One Direction or Justin Bieber, at least they represent the middlebrow rock of RIGHT NOW, rather than of THIRTY YEARS ago.

Often, when I find myself in a discussion about music, and a band like Loverboy comes up, I get a lot of the word "credibility." Which just makes me laugh, hard. Mainly because many of the acts that I'm told are "credible," are anything but. Jack White, for instance. All anybody has to do is watch It Might Get Loud, and the fact that that dude is a ginormous poseur is obvious. Connor Oberst (drawing from McMahan's neck of the woods)? I know something about the privileged, entitled upbringing he enjoyed...now he sells himself as some sort of street poet.

Loverboy? They sell themselves as a bunch of guys who wanted to be in a rock band, so they started one, and wrote some songs you might like. Come down and have a good time.

Which seems more credible, to me, than 90% of the bands you could name.

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