Sunday, February 8, 2009
Where have all the truly artistic and original musicians gone? When was the last time we found a group that really wandered outside the commercial box? Amber and I were talking a little bit about this today. These artists are hard to find. The last group I can think of is Mew.
Just recently, the founding member of the Cramps and punk rock legend Lux Interior died of continuing heart issues. I don't claim to be a fan of the Cramps or their S&M/dominatrix/psychobilly schtick, however I will give credit where credit is due.
The Cramps started in the 70's and were part of the greatest rock movements in history taking place at CBGB's in NYC. They copied no one and were truly disturbing. Like I said, I'm not a fan, but I can't help but be jealous at their stroke of genius by playing a gig at the Napa State Mental Hospital in California (click here to view). To see Cramps fans mingling with mental patients... you can't tell the difference. Also to see some of the mental patients dancing on stage, well... you know this wouldn't fly anymore with today's regulations. It kind of reminded me of when Johnny Cash played at the Folsom State Prison. When was the last time that any artist tried to pull off something like that? (that wasn't a copycat)
I guess I'm lamenting the current lack of creative music talent marketed to the masses. Less and less are musicians interested in pushing creative boundaries. More and more are they interested in creating palatable sugar coated blah, blah, blah. College radio is no longer college radio. Female tweenies are who record labels are catering to. We all know what this is about.
So, despite being weirded out by Lux Interior and the Cramps, I recognize that another music pioneer has bitten the dust.