Dec 102011

Like my beer league team, RTH needs a youth movement.

Like my beer league hockey team, RTH needs a youth movement.

Here’s a recent picture of my beer league hockey team in Vancouver. If you look close, you’ll see that many of us are early-40s, while others are 20 years younger.

We didn’t intend for this to happen. Most of us older guys would have been content with seeing other older guys show up once a week. But other older guys had kids, wives, jobs -all things that interfered with showing up to play hockey and, more importantly, drink beer.

So, somehow, a youth movement happened on our team, which has been around since 1987, incidentally. The young kids though make it a pretty fun environment for the rest of us. It’s fun when they fuck up and we mock them. It’s fun to listen to them complain about seemingly trivial life problems, like STDs. And it’s fun to watch the blinding speed of a kid two years out of junior who doesn’t know Bobby Orr from Bobby Hull.

Would Rock Town Hall benefit from a youth movement? You be the judge. Bonus points to the RTHers who can identify NorthVanCoveman in the pic…


  31 Responses to “Rock Town Hall Youth Movement”

  1. I would love to see this happen. For one thing we could have a Bring Your Kid to the Hall day. For another, I’m going to grant machinery’s hip daughter Back Office privileges. I’m pretty sure she’s registered and has posted in the past!

  2. 2000 Man

    Any music blog could use a youth movement. But not just youth, older fans as well. I think it’s just as interesting to find an older fan that missed out on The Replacements or just hears Shake Some Action for the first time and can’t believe how much they love The Flamin’ Groovies and why didn’t anyone tell them about this stuff? New people help keep things interesting, and I think this is one of the most welcoming music sites I’ve ever come across.

  3. Yo old guys-

    You want a youth movement? Then you need to start discussing Panda Bear, Beach House, Toro y Moi, and Girls instead of Pete Townsend, Rod Stewart, Glen Campbell and Lord Sutch!


  4. pos69sum, thanks for checking in on this. Do you have what it takes to spearhead the RTH Youth Movement? If so, I welcome you to lead by example. I don’t have what it takes. I tried Beach House once and wanted to tie a boulder to my ankle and throw myself into the ocean. Panda Bear I’ve only toyed with; I didn’t particularly like or dislike them yet. I look forward to your help in dragging us into the late-20th century, if not more recent times!

  5. ladymisskirroyale

    I’m with pos69sum. There is lots of new (or newer) music out there for us to discuss/dislike/love/discover. That will bring in the kids.

    I’ll work up a post soon about Hallers’ fav purchases of 2011 so that we can start the healing.

  6. 2000 Man

    If we’re gonna talk Panda Bear can I have that boulder you didn’t use?

  7. I’m sure you know this, ladymiss, but in case anyone is not clear: I’m all for bringing in new people with new interests to the Hall, but my point to pos69sum was that I can’t be a phony and start touting new bands I don’t relate to strictly for editorial/marketing purposes. Others certainly can! They can bring in these bands for sincere interest, and I know all but the Bad Attitude Club will give them a listen and want to know what the “sponsor” of the thread thinks is interesting, entertaining, and whatnot about these artists. Then I hope we have our usual give and take and keep a good spirit about the proceedings. Thanks.

  8. Wait…so what’s this “safe hockey” business all about, then?

  9. misterioso

    Gee whiz, I am getting all tingly with excitement and anticipation. Either that or I am having a mild stroke. Time will tell.

  10. tonyola

    I tried listening to Toto Y Moi’s Underneath the Pine. The dreamier songs are like Fleetwood Mac circa1971-1972 (his singing even sounds a bit like Bob Welch) and the dancier stuff just isn’t very imaginative. The guy in particular needs to pay more attention to his drum tracks. Overall, not bad but nothing compelling here.

  11. tonyola

    It means a minimum of pucking around.

  12. ladymisskirroyale

    I think that since we all have such discriminating palates that it’s nice to broaden the horizons to include newer bands that we like.

  13. By the way, I can’t see the photo clearly enough when I blow it up to make anyone out, but based on NorthVanCoveman’s surprising (at least by the standards of his respectful RTH play) roughing/unsportsmanlike conduct penalties on July 26, 2010, I’m thinking he’s a tough guy. Watch it, newcomers to the Hall, based on this recruiting effort: NVCM may pull your sweater over your head!

  14. Huh? What was July 26th, 2010?

    I’m no tough guy, by the way.

  15. cliff sovinsanity

    While I think that RTH could use a younger perspective now and then, I think it’s important that they should at least know of a Hull, Esposito, Orr, Richard. It doesn’t automatically disqualify their opinion if they don’t know their history, but it goes a long way towards a credible opinion. Perhaps along the way we can steer them in the proper direction while they show us a few things. And here I thought I was the young kid around here.
    If I may use the parlance of the youth. Down with the H8TRS (see Bad Attitude Club).
    One more thing, northvancoveman, you are standing third from the right. The guy next to you is giving you an evil look.

  16. NVCM is the guy in the front holding up the “we are number one” finger. What did I win?

  17. I listen to the Sound Opinions podcast and that is pretty much my only source of new music, so I’d love to have some people on here making suggestions for new stuff.

    One of the problems that I’ve found is that it’s tough to cut through the noise these days. There are so many outlets and bands get so hyped that invariably, by the time I actually hear the music, my reaction is, ‘Well this is decent enough but wildly over-hyped and therefore a letdown.”

    I’m going to see the War On Drugs this weekend and I’d like to get the new Raphael Sadique album but I spent a lot of this weekend listening to R&B from the ’40s and ’50s and I’m starting to wonder if I’ve just gotten musically incurious or at least incurious for current music.

    One of the other problems is that for people who are as obsessive about music as some of us on this list are, it gets tougher and tougher to find something that doesn’t sound like a lesser version of something that we’ve already heard. When I got the first Led Zeppelin album, I noticed that there were two Willie Dixon songs on it. I noticed the same name cropped up on albums by the Doors and the Stones etc. I followed the thread back and eventually got to Howlin’ Wolf, and various other blues guys. Once you hear that, why would you listed to Led Zeppelin or any of those other guys work their way through some blues?

    Similarly, I heard Jim Diregatus on Sound Opinions fawning over a band called Best Coast. I didn’t like them at all but I figure that maybe if I wasn’t familiar with the Nuggets box sets and the early ’60s girl group stuff, Best Coast would sound new and exciting. Maybe stuff like that is the next generations gateway drug. Which is not to say that there won’t be some new, innovative band that works it’s way into the cannon, but it’s tougher and tougher to do because rock/pop is such a limited genre.

    So I would welcome folks like pos69sum to bring some new influences to this group. And I would love to have them weigh in on our dinosaur rock topics.

  18. tonyola

    Why would I listen to Led Zep or the Doors work through Willie Dixon? For the same reason I listen to the Beatles play “Money” or Aretha Franklin play “Respect” – it’s a matter of interpretation. While there’s nothing wrong with the source material, it’s interesting to hear how other artists cover it.

  19. Another reason: sometimes I find the cover versions more appealing. The Beatles’ “Twist and Shout,” for instance, blows away the Isley Brothers’ version.

  20. Nothing wrong with Howlin Wolf… a bold statement indeed.

  21. 2000 Man

    I like a lot of bands that seem to follow in the footsteps of other bands. Why would I listen to The Stones play Slim Harpo songs when I could listen to Slim? Because The Stones are better at it, if you ask me. I can’t stand Led Zeppelin, but I thought The Raconteurs were terrific, and it’s pretty obvious that half their songs are pure Zeppelin homages. They’re more fun, though.

    I can see cdm’s point of trying to find new music. You need a filter, and it’s hard to find that filter. Nowadays you have to use ten different filters, so sometimes you end up with crap, but if you line them all up right like the right store, the right blog recommendation, the right song on YouTube and the right mood on your part, you can find new things that are really worthwhile. I don’t care if someone did it before, I only care if the songs are good.

  22. Fair points – and in an effort to further clarify my original reaction to pos69sum’s comment, which I may have taken the wrong way, I really encourage anyone who wants to broaden the discussion to come on board and do so. As much as our usual demographic suggests we have “limits” on topics, I don’t think that’s a stated or intended case. What I think is to be expected, what anyone’s fellow Townspeople will hope for, is that the person venturing into new territory will express their opinions in a way that demonstrates that they’ve “lived” the music. Some of the new music blogs I used to try to keep up with led with a marketing agenda in their editorial content that rarely went much further than, “Tuesday, Vampire Weekend drops a new blah blah blah…” Pitchfork writers actually write about the music – and allow their own reactions to come into play – but I’m thinking of blogs like Acquarium Drunkard, which seem more concerned with upholding their stylistic niche/turf than saying anything worthwhile. Here’s their brief review of Kurt Vile’s latest:

    Kurt Vile – Smoke Ring For My Halo: 
A haunted psych-folk record, Smoke Ring is a potent sub-strain of American roots music more in the vein of Skip Spence and David Ackles than, say, Gram Parsons or Bruce Springsteen. In opener “Baby’s Arms,” Vile flicks a taut string that quivers across 10 tracks of cigarette warmth in a dark room. These are the 21st century blues as sung by a young Philadelphian.

    I guess my beef with this kind of review is that it seems to protect the artist’s music right from the start by putting him under the safety net of largely inconsequential oddball artists like Skip Spence and David Ackles. I know that characterization may be completely unfair to the 4083 people around the globe who actually love Spence and Ackles over the likes of Parsons and Springsteen, but as a music lover and reader my ability to take these words and work with them, converse over them with other humans, is extremely limited. I’m immediately put in the position of ASSHOLE. How can I converse over the music of Kurt Vile when half the given context is an acid casualty who produced one album? I don’t know, I feel like reading these types of reviews and wanting to then have a dialog is akin to conversing over the catalog descriptions from The J. Peterman Company. Does that make sense?

    Bring the new music! Bring the old music we’ve ignored! Bring it all! Most of all, bring yourself to the table and join us! Give us hell, if that’s what we’ve got coming to us. Trade ideas. All that jazz. That’s my wish.

  23. I meant that there is nothing wrong with chasing down and listening to the original versions of songs.

  24. I figured as much, Tony, and I’m just messing with you. But with the exception of a handful of covers, I generally prefer to track down the source and that’s particularly true for me of the blues.

    But the bigger point I was trying to make was that rock and pop are limited genres and so the longer you listen to that kind of music, the more likely it is that you are going to hear something that sounds like something that came before it. Some elements of music and productions might sound fresher to someone who is hearing them for the first (or even tenth) time.

  25. hrrundivbakshi

    I dunno about the notion that Rock and Roll is — uh, has always been — a limited genre. I truly believe it expanded/mutated/changed/evolved quite nicely for about 30 years. Then the 1980s arrived, and I sort of feel like it’s all been recycled product since then. I mean, the distance between “Whole Lotta Love” and “Killing Floor” is vast; between “Whole Lotta Love” and anything by, say, Wolfmother is quite small. XTC was probably one of the most inventive bands of the 80s and (arguably) 90s — and they were still a clear re-tread of Beatles/Kinks/etc. The last band I remember marveling at for their originality were the Minutemen, and even that is a bit of a stretch.

  26. I agree with some of that. There was a musical land grab in the ’60s and ’70s when people realized the rule book was being torn up.

    But the bottom line is that there are only 12 notes as, I think, Coltrane helpfully pointed out. (Aside from prog, I also think there are just a handful of time signatures that really work for rock and pop). There are only so many ways you can rearrange things and still have it be pop or rock, as opposed to it morphing into something else like free jazz or classical or show tunes.

    I may have mentioned my Still Life theory before, it goes like this: There are many ways to do a still life of a bowl of fruit (oil paint, photo, watercolor, etc). Rock music is like being restricted to just using a pencil and paper. It’s trying to create with primitive tools in a limited style. The first people who got there may not have been as sophisticated as later artists but they were creating something that was exciting, in part, because it hadn’t been done before. As time goes on, it gets tougher to come up with innovations just using a pencil and paper, but that’s also the beauty of it, because it forces the artist to dig deep to come up with something interesting. I’m not saying that a cool, inventive band can’t form tomorrow. I’m just saying that it gets tougher and tougher to distinguish oneself with each passing year, especially now that technology has allowed everyone to have unlimited access to virtually any of the cool sounds that came before.

    Seriously, when was the last time you heard a new band and had your mind blown like you did the first time you got sucked into your obsession? Me? Guided by Voices about 15 years ago.

    I would love to hear pos69sum and some other Panda Bear fans weigh in on this (provided that they keep the fuck off my lawn).

    In the meantime, I’m going to track down some Panda Bear on youtube.

  27. cdm wrote:

    Seriously, when was the last time you heard a new band and had your mind blown like you did the first time you got sucked into your obsession? Me? Guided by Voices about 15 years ago.

    Excellent question and way to begin framing our mission! I’ll have to think about this. For me it may be Beulah, about 7 (?) years ago, as they were breaking up. Although they sounded like a more complete version of Apples in Stereo, The Minders, and other E6 bands whose records I’d owned, their lyrics also hit me. Their second and third (?) records, in particular, moved me as full-blown rock ‘n roll records, like the kind of stuff I grew up getting obsessed with.

    Funny you should mention GBV, who I also first heard around 20 years ago, but did not take to. Around the same time I started buying Beulah records I finally developed a latent love for the best songs on the 30-song GBV collection that came out when they were breaking up. I went back and listened to the full albums I’d already bought, however, and still found the same faults in any particular album by them, but their best stuff still turns me on in all the right ways.

  28. So, if I’m understanding this, your interest in a band is, at best, an indication that they are going to break up soon and may even be the actual kiss of death, correct?

  29. It seems that way, doesn’t it?

  30. Cliffs of Insanity…my stalker…

  31. cliff sovinsanity

    I assume my assumption was correct.

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