I’m surprised nobody has anything to say about Paul Anka / Nirvana – I called the most hallowed album of the alt-rock era unlistenable! I also can’t believe we’re still in that era (stuck in the doldrums, it seems… Save us, M.I.A.!)

Playing first was all for the best last night; Lincoln’s only world-famous nightspot, the Zoo Bar, was full for Axeface’s set. Playing with Axeface was so good, I was on stage for all but the first two songs. We were halfway through practice earlier that evening when I realized that the four of us (Cory, Annie, Tucci, Howie) were Shacker-redux.

I told James something that only crystallized in my mind in the telling; the longer I make music, the more important it is to me to be at least a little entertaining for the gathered audience. When h&s started writing, our songs were intended as art/expression, without much thought to the listener’s experience. Now, I actively work with that experience (live and through recordings) and try to frame art/expression as something a person might like to listen to. Novel!

Credit goes to the second band, with an incredibly long name (includes “Vs.”), for making this clear to me. They were not entertaining, or expressive in a meaningful way, or even listenable. Props – you taught me something!


2 thoughts on “ZOO BAR, 26 JULY 05”

  1. I didn’t say anything about Nirvana because I mostly agree. I know I’ve had the discussion with folks before about how I think Pearl Jam was better than Nirvana, but that’s not so much a knock on Nirvana as an elevation of Pearl Jam.

    But these days, whenever I hear a Niravna song on the radio, I feel the need to change the station. In fact, there are only three Nirvana songs that I can currently listen to all the way through, and none of them were on Nevermind.

    Maybe it’s because they were overplayed, or maybe it’s because the popularity of the songs makes them lose their meaning, and maybe it’s because there are some songs certain people should sing because it doesn’t seem truthful, but so many Nirvana songs have been lost to me as the years go on.

    Despite what I think of Nirvana now as opposed to when I was in high school, there’s nothing that can take away the importance of Nevermind and what followed. They literally changed music in one shot, and you have to give them props for that. That doesn’t mean you have to enjoy it.

  2. I wish I could have gone. I actually saw Tucci’s fiance early in the evening at the BW3’s on the south side of town. I told her to say hi to everyone for me.

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