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Old 01-23-2016, 02:52 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default When bands don't play the song right...

One of your favorite bands is coming to town, you pony up the bucks for tickets, get excited as the show day approaches, enter the venue with great expectations, applaud mightily as the band takes the stage, and then......they play some, not all, of the songs differently than as recorded- not just live variations, but full on tempo changes, rhythm fluctuations, lyrical changes, or, for me, the dreaded worst, a change in vocal technique that almost makes the song sound like a mockery of itself. It disappoints me even though I can understand an artists tiring of playing the same song the same way for 30 years- for me, if it's not better, stick with the original until you come up with the better version...watched an episode of Jools Holland yesterday on Palladia, and he had Steve Miller as a guest, he did Abracadabra, and he sang it so different, in an altered vocal style, that is was distracting to me, and made me disinterested in the performance.
Saw Steve Forbert play last week and he changed Romeo's Tune significantly, so much so that many around me had no idea he was playing it until he got to the chorus..
So when is it okay for an artist to change the hit song, to keep themselves interested, knowing that fans may not approve or appreciate it?
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Old 01-23-2016, 02:53 AM   #2 (permalink)
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If you want to hear it how it's played on the record then stay at home and listen to the fucking record.

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Old 01-23-2016, 03:13 AM   #3 (permalink)
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If you want to hear it how it's played on the record then stay at home and listen to the fucking record.

Really, is that the best you can offer to this forum?
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Old 01-23-2016, 05:21 AM   #4 (permalink)
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He's right. You go to see the band perform as you haven't heard them before. You WANT the songs to sound different, otherwise what is the point in shelling out the bucks?

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Old 01-23-2016, 06:26 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Really, is that the best you can offer to this forum?
If it's such a shit answer tell me why it's wrong.
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Old 01-23-2016, 10:00 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Exactly why i really dont go to shows that often. I want to hear and see them play the music that i know. I dont mind if they switch things up but when they overperform or include the audience too much it kinda ruins it. I didnt pay for a bunch of drunken twats to sing for you.
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Old 01-23-2016, 10:03 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I quite agree, Frank. Although there is the distinction between playing the song differently for a live performance and simply doing a ****ty rendition of the song.
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Old 01-23-2016, 10:26 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Basil C. Thurston III View Post
So when is it okay for an artist to change the hit song, to keep themselves interested, knowing that fans may not approve or appreciate it?
whenever the artist wants....it's their property. Seriously why should they give two shits what the fans think and or want...

personally when i see a live band i expect some form of variation or better yet some spontaneous changes....Swans live is a perfect example of this....none of their live material sounds anything like the recorded material...but the feeling is exactly the same if not actually more intense

hell even Kraftwerk changed their live material which made their show even more interesting than it already was
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Old 01-23-2016, 12:05 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Basil C. Thurston III View Post
One of your favorite bands is coming to town, you pony up the bucks for tickets, get excited as the show day approaches, enter the venue with great expectations, applaud mightily as the band takes the stage, and then......they play some, not all, of the songs differently than as recorded- not just live variations, but full on tempo changes, rhythm fluctuations, lyrical changes, or, for me, the dreaded worst, a change in vocal technique that almost makes the song sound like a mockery of itself. It disappoints me even though I can understand an artists tiring of playing the same song the same way for 30 years- for me, if it's not better, stick with the original until you come up with the better version...watched an episode of Jools Holland yesterday on Palladia, and he had Steve Miller as a guest, he did Abracadabra, and he sang it so different, in an altered vocal style, that is was distracting to me, and made me disinterested in the performance.
Saw Steve Forbert play last week and he changed Romeo's Tune significantly, so much so that many around me had no idea he was playing it until he got to the chorus..
So when is it okay for an artist to change the hit song, to keep themselves interested, knowing that fans may not approve or appreciate it?
Funny thing you mention Jools Holland, and playing tunes the same way etc etc. Jools played keys in Squeeze and they appeared on TOTP, but the producer or whoever wanted them to lip sync, and the reason for that is to insure that the performance heard is exactly the song is done the same way as the recorded version. So in silent protest or just for yucks to reveal it was a farce, when they appear on TOTP to "perform" Up the Junction the band switched instruments and hilarity ensues. Glenn Tilbrook (vocals, guitar) is on the drums. You can see Jools is riffing on guitar like pro.

Squeeze - Up the Junction (TOTP)


I forget who said it, but it went something like "Be careful of the (hit) songs you write, you will be playing them for the rest of your life." or was it something like "If I knew I was going to play this for rest of my life I would been more careful writing it," - something like that. I think they play the song so many times it becomes monotonous. Like they say "familiarity breed contempt." That they might have to change things up, and whether the fans like it or not is another question. And it depends if the backing band know the song well enough to execute a near perfect rendition of the song as heard on the album. There are times that even a band who sometime have to relearn their songs. Again I forgot who said it, but some musician said the fans know their songs better than the band does.

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I quite agree, Frank. Although there is the distinction between playing the song differently for a live performance and simply doing a ****ty rendition of the song.
No, I don't think that is what Zappa was getting at. His point was "improvisation" versus playing by "rote" (a want for a better word, for playing the same way over and over). A band can play a song "differently" by changing from one style to another, like changing a Rock tune to Reggae. Whether or not it is a "****ty rendition" is subjective to the listener. And a band can also improvise but still not be good at it. I forget who said but it reminds me a this Jazz musician lamenting over ordinary people not knowing good Jazz from bad. He said he was at a cafe and there was a band blowing... Jazz... but like in a bad way, but the people were like "yeah Jazz, this is good." And he was like "no they didn't."
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Old 01-23-2016, 12:11 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Alrighty then.
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