Psychobabble


The album was done… He finished it months ago, leaves were still on the trees and were still new! Maybe it was September. But thats not the point. It was finished before the stock market started hemorrhaging.

Life was good in the mind of this up and coming musician! His hobby of music was paid for by his profession (web application design), he had some gigs lined up, and his band was enthusiastic. What happened?

A reality bitchslap right across the face. The stock market took a dump, and the uncertainty of the future caused him to begin evaluating each move he makes towards an industry that everyone and their brother tells him is nearly impossible to break into without tens of thousands of dollars.

Suddenly the thought of running his own record label and releasing his own album has become but a faint voice in the back of his head, easily overwhelmed by the voices of Prudence, and her unpopular and bitchy cousin Cynicism.

“What are my options?” he asks them.

Prudence speaks up. “Keep playing shows and sell singles! Save what you can and put it into a bank account! After about a year, you should be pretty close! And maybe by then you’ll have enough people ready to buy your album so that you’re not storing all of them in your parents’ basement while the copyright date slips into the past.”

Then Cynicism interrupted. “No, just drop music all-together! You don’t have what it takes kid, you’ll spend all your money, and won’s sell shit. You’ll wish you had put it all aside for something better, like retirement.”

“Its something I have to do,” he replied. “I have to know what will happen if I put my music out there for people to hear. I have to see if I can do it. I have to know if I can push myself through all the hard work it takes to work an album and sell it. I know its a lot of work! I know the odds are stacked so highly against me. But I just gotta try!”

Cynicism is an evil thing, discouraging as she is, but prudence was his true friend. “Remember, that when you release your album, the clock is ticking, you have roughly a year to have recorded your next set of songs or you’ll be considered a failure in the eyes of many record labels. No one would touch you with a ten foot pole! You have to keep it rolling, and when you know for a truth that you cannot afford another go round in the studio, the odds are stacked against you even more.”

He thought about this for the first time. She continued. “If you sit on what you’ve got, and release some EPs you can buy yourself some time and work your way towards a better funded future. You can grow your fan-base, spread your name, and get an infrastructure of devoted evangelists to pimp your music out to all of their friends when you finally do release it. Its the right way to go.”

He nodded. Cynicism crossed her arms and turned away. Prudence smiled at a job well done.

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My mind turns to the likes of Ghostbusters II. I think of Vigo, and what he must be going through in that painting while watching that guy from Ally McBeal run around the museum running the show, knowing that he is but a painting. You know I cry myself to sleep at night, knowing that I’m just the Psychobabble voice. Hah! I imagine you understand how Vigo feels.

Its VIGO!!

Its VIGO!!

What brings this up? I’ll tell you. An album I’ve not visited for a while is back on my Rhapsody player. Which one? Oh, I’ll tell you. It encompasses the anger of the generation it represents, all wound up into a super-tight coil of springloaded belligerence. One of its kind in style and antagonistic grace.

My Chemical Romance - The Black Parade

My Chemical Romance - The Black Parade

My Chemical Romance has this nice little song called Dead! That when it first came out struck me as really mean and rotten. But soon I remembered that not all music has to be nice and polite.  I’m sure Insane Clown Posse would be where they are today had they called themselves the Misunderstood Clown Posse.

The Black Parade always struck me as one of the most edgy albums of the year, and even the decade. I can’t wait to see what these guys do next.  I heard they all mellowed out and are in the process of making an acoustic album about forgiveness and hugs. I actually don’t know what to say to that… You’re a rumor monger.

Theres alot of talk floating around on the net about a Led Zeppelin 2009 Tour. There is also alot of talk about Robert Plant opting out, and then back in, and then out again. There is talk regarding auditions for a new lead singer and —  Hey! uhm, hi whats up? One question? Sure, I guess. What is it? Where can I go to audition for Led Zeppelin! before Robert Plant gets back on board? I’m not even sure if the news is real or not. You don’t even sing. Thats ok, I will sing if I can be part of Led Zeppelin! I mean. c’mon, its Led Zeppelin!, ya know?

I see your point, it would appear that the group has any of the trillions of loyal Zeppelin fans to choose from. But would it be the same? You remember the bitter division of the fans when David Lee Roth was replaced. That is a great point, replacing Robert Plant in a Led Zeppelin! reunion tour would effectively divide those who idolized Robert Plant and Jimmy Page. And don’t forget John Bonham and John Paul Jones. I’m sure that John Bonham would love the exclusion of Robert Plant. At least they replaced him with someone who sorta has a birthright.

Anyhow, this is what John Paul Jones had to say:

“I’m afraid, there’s no final answer yet. As you probably know, Jimmy, Jason and I are actually rehearsing and we’ve had the odd singer come in and have a bash. As soon as we know — which we don’t — we will let you know. But we really hope that something is going to happen soon because we really want to do it and we’re having a lot of fun, actually, just rehearsing. Jason is actually tremendous… We really wanna do something and Robert doesn’t want to do this, at least for the moment. I don’t really know what his plans are. He really doesn’t want to make loud music anymore. We do. I mean, I love acoustic music, but it doesn’t stop me from turning something up… And what we’ve done so far sounds absolutely fantastic. When it does come, it will come, and you’ll know about it”

So what it sounds like to me, is Robert Plant likes the direction his recent work, like Dreamland and The Mighty Rearranger, is going and doesn’t want to go back to the past to the loud sounds of Led Zeppelin. I understand and respect his point of view. I still want to audition. I think you would need a few more qualifications than “gimmic of some unknown blogger for two days”.  Hahaha, you’re the unknown blogger!

What happened to the protest song? When did we stop caring? Why is Green Day and Bloc Party the only ones writing songs with any social awareness? I know… I know there has to be others out there that are writing good protest song and just haven’t come to mind. Yes, don’t forget The Flaming Lips. RIGHT! This is a great example of what I was getting to. The Flips understand that not every anti-war song has to be angry.  I don’t think the Flips could come up with an angry song if they tried, they are jubilant by nature.

Ok, this is for everyone who reads this.  That is laughable shh… This is for everyone who reads this… If you know of any protest songs, post a comment, I want to check them out. Hell, even if its a local group, or even your own. Tell me about your music! I want to hear it! If I like it I’ll give you a review!

Hey friend, how’s it going? Pretty good, just hanging out, so to speak. Ya, cool, cool. Whats up with you, playa? Don’t call me that.  k sorry… Whats up with you? Not too much, I’m starting a music blog.  Oh yeah? You’re finally making the leap eh? Ya, I guess you could say that. So when are you going to attend the world consortium of ex-bloggers? Nice, starting early then with the discouragement then? I do what I can, keeps you grounded. Someone has to do it I guess.

So what makes you qualified to do this blog? I mean, everyone on the internet has a music blog, whats going to make yours special? You mean aside from the Psychobabble journal entries? Well, ya. Aside from that. Well, hmm I don’t know, I believe my opinions are based on fair observations and my taste in music spans generations. So you would describe fair as what? Hmm, well I’m pretty certain most people out there listen less actively to music as I do, they don’t break it down and listen to the nuances and such. So you think that just because you study the actual music rather than form blind opinions, that makes your opinion more valuable than the other folks out there? Not more valuable, really. Lets say… unique? That is fair, I guess.

What kind of music are you going to review? Anything creative, really. But I’m not going to simply review music, I’m planning on going to shows and commenting on classics from before you were born.  Freude would have a stroke. What?  What? I’m confused. Apparently, nevermind. Anyhow, I want to do commentary on what a given song means to its containing genre, and what it means to the direction of music as a whole.  And why stop there. Exactly! Some songs even have a profound effect on society as a whole.  Give peace a chance. Precisely! No, No. You’re talking too much, lets get on with it. Oh, c’mon, its my blog after all, who invited you? I’m stunned, and slightly hurt. I’m not appologizing to the Psychobabble voice.  Fine, I quit. Have fun with your blog.