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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Indictment

From what I've seen, rock music fans can be incredibly unforgiving when a band seems to change its tune. So unforgiving that they can forever hate a band because they put out a record on a major label, used a certain producer or heavily tinkered with their sound in the process. Maybe I'm just looking at the wrong people, but I'm just in the dark as to why people are this way.

There's the angle about taking music incredibly personal and not being willing to share with others. I understand that because I've felt that way about a number of bands over the years. But I would never go so far and completely disown a band I love because they put out something I didn't like or became really popular.

It's as if people don't allow bands to grow. It's like they want them to be around forever and be forever great. They don't want them to ever change. To which I wonder: is this just wishful thinking?

I think about all the negativity Jawbreaker encountered when they signed with DGC back in 1994. People who held close to Unfun, Bivouac and 24 Hour Revenge Therapy automatically hated Dear You because it was on a major label. Most hated the idea before actually listening to the record. Yet the record appeared to be an attempt at the brass ring and I know there are people who still haven't forgiven the band for this. To which I reply: grow up, dude.

The situation the members of Jawbreaker were in when they formed was not the same situation they were in when they signed with DGC. Originally a band of college friends recording and touring on school breaks, they had done the band full-time for a few years by the time major labels showed interest. They were very vocal about their anti-major label views when asked by interviewers, so it seemed rather odd when they signed with one. But when I learned signing with a major label was a last-ditch effort to keep the band alive after years of tension and in-fighting, I had a much better understanding. The deal is, there are people who claim to not care about knowing that stuff. I beg to differ.

This kind of backlash seems like a crime has been committed. But when has growing up and taking your situation into consideration ever been illegal?

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