When we were in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago, I read this article in their local weekly. It showed up again in the Houston Press (though I can’t find the link now), reminding me that our “independent” weeklies are really just parts of a larger media company.
If you don’t have time to read the article, the writer is basically saying that 20/30-somethings are suffering from a cancer called classic rock. That while our parents did not listen to their dads’ Benny Goodman records when they were young, we are basically listening to our parents’ music by continuing to dig on classic rock. The writer goes so far as to call younger classic rock fans “traitors to their contemporaries.” He’s talking about this in the context of the number of classic rock radio stations that currently exist, having not gotten the memo that Clear Channel radio is what is no longer relevant.
I thought the article was funny and pretty ridiculous. This isn’t the first time I’ve heard that argument. And I’m the first to admit that most of what I listen to is anachronistic to the time in which I’m living. Or is it? As I listen to stuff like Graham Nash’s Chicago (We Can Change the World), which I downloaded off iTunes yesterday and hadn’t heard in years, the song still sounds goooooood. There are plenty of songs (probably not the one I just mentioned) that could be plucked from the archives and a modern listener who didn’t know better could believe that they were current. When I hear new bands that I like, I buy their shit. But those purchases are few and far between because I’m either not connecting to the stuff I’d like, or there just isn’t a lot from which for me to choose.
Old doesn’t equal irrelevant, just as new doesn’t equal relevant.