Friday, 1 April 2011

Local Band Rivalry

Being in an unsigned band is for the most part a plateau of mundane experience punctuated by occasional highs and lows. The highs may include the kudos of playing the odd festival in the summer or getting some late night national radio play. The lows are when it costs more to get the van through its MOT than the amount you originally paid for it. Or somebody leaves and you have to replace them, losing any amount of momentum the band may have had. The mundane part is lumping gear around, organising practices, booking gigs and burning cdr's which you can't even give away.

There seems to be a limited set of experiences that all band share, signed or unsigned. Ask any gigging musician and they're bound to have tales of dodgy promoters, late night trips up or down the A1, playing to the proverbial 2 men and a dog in sticky floored venues. And that's just the good stuff!


One of the more ridiculous band experiences is that of local band rivalry. The music scene in general is a small gene-pool, any local scene even more so. These bands are all scratting round for the same gigs, may have to support bands they think should be supporting them. The first reaction to any other band's good fortune is to think that that should have been us. etc etc etc. I'll bet good money that even someone as successful and popular as Paul McCartney still bristles with resentment towards some also-ran Merseybeat combo. Perhaps that's human nature, I dunno.

Anyway, the reason I mention this is that it gives me an excuse to show a clip from one of the greatest rock films ever - "Slade in Flame", where Noddy Holder, singer with The Undertakers gets locked in a coffin by their local rivals. The fashions may change but the song remains the same....