IT’S MY PARTY! took the show on the road in July, beginning with a return to the Legacy at Willow Pond community on July 11. The weather was ideal, and, although it was the first show of the season, things went well. Many of our devoted fans were present, some driving an hour-and-a-half to watch us. We performed eight shows in July, at one point performing four shows in a five-day span, a new record for the group.
Unbelievably, all of the outdoor shows went off without a hitch, a small miracle, as Western, New York has experienced an unusually wet July. The nearest miss, was our July 19 show at the Waterloo Premium Outlets, where it rained at the conclusion of the show. One of our new stops was in Hammondsport, NY, a small village at the southern tip of Keuka Lake. There is a small village green with a bandstand in Hammondsport, where the Chamber of Commerce hosts Thursday night summer concerts. Although it was a bit of a tight fit, we are able to use the bandstand. The lawn filled up quickly, and the local Rotarians sold food. We had a perfect night, and all indications are that we will be returning again next year.
Preparations for our live show put the recording of “You Won’t Even Know Her Name” on hold. However, we have booked some time on Sunday, August 3 to complete the recording. If all goes well, we should have the new track available on iTunes and other online stores before September.
(The ramblings of a drummer with too much time on his hands)
There was one all-too familiar sound that was ubiquitous to every shopping experience of my youth – Muzak. Muzak, or elevator music, as we called it, filled every supermarket aisle. I guess the intention of Muzak was to make the shopping experience more enjoyable, but as one of the younger generation, it had the opposite effect on me. I couldn’t fathom any one actually liking Muzak, it was totally unpalatable. If any thing, the “fuddy-duddy” tunes only made me want to exit the building as quickly as possible. Did any one really like this music? Not only were the songs sleepy, they were not even the original recordings. Later on in life, I would come to realize that the licensing for the original recordings were most likely cost prohibitive. There must have been a recording studio and Muzak musicians who specialized in creating the most drab pieces of music ever recorded. I did a little research, and found out that these light pieces, with few dynamics, were meant to slow down the buyer, so they would take longer to shop. To me, the only possible effect would be to fall asleep in the department store.
Here is 90-minutes of Muzak, if you can stand it:
So, now I’m one of the older generation, and what do I hear while shopping today, the musical background of my youth. Only now, the songs are, for the most part, the original recordings. I guess companies are willing to pay more for the licenses to these tunes. And it get’s me thinking, is the younger generation as turned off by these songs, as I was with the Muzak of my youth? Is the teenager of today laughing at the songs I held so important to my formative years?
Now my initial reaction to these songs being played in stores is one of fury. I mean, don’t get me wrong, they are great songs, but was “Holding on to Yesterday” by Ambrosia meant as background shopping music? Certainly, there had to be a deeper meaning to the song, or was it all created in the backdrop of disposable pop music?
I remember the outrage when Nike used “Revolution” by the Beatles in 1987 to promote their shoes, the public outcry made them drop the ad — I think Michael Jackson was behind releasing the music for this use. But now, would any one complain?
So, as I contemplate this use of the music of my youth, I only have one word of caution to the younger generation who, most likely, wants to exit the store at the first note of “Hot Blooded,” what goes around comes around. Just wait a few decades, and 5 Seconds of Summer, and Mylie Cyrus songs will be scoffed and laughed at in supermarkets by the next generation!