More Cowbell

more cowbell

A couple of weeks ago I went to see a friend’s band play. Their name: More Cowbell.

I hadn’t seen a cover band in a long time and I had forgotten how good it feels to know song after song and be reminded of old favorites. There is a real pleasure in the experience of hearing the soundtrack of your life and sharing it with other people. The Cars, the Cult, Areosmith, Blondie, U2, No Doubt, the Foo Fighters, the Ramones… More Cowbell ripped things up for the duration of three satisfying sets. They didn’t play any Rush songs (it’s not often that you hear a band cover Rush), but my buddy on the kit was doing his best to sneak in fills when he could. I found myself singing along and grinning all night.

Weirdly, it felt like a vacation — a vacation from all the new stuff out there, and I don’t only mean new releases. I mean anything new to you – bands your friends suggest, albums that critics write about, music you hear on TV or in movies…There is so much out there and I really do want to give it all a try, but sometimes I just want to listen to the Cars’ first album for days and not feel like I’m missing out on something.

Seeing More Cowbell, and the happiness I experienced that night, made me realize that maybe I’m reaching my cut off point. I might be full, no more room for new stuff. I have assembled my musical cannon and I’m happy with it. I don’t like to believe this. I like to think that I will always be open to new music, but something inside me smirks and says stop foolin’ (immediately thought of Def Leppard) yourself. I remember when it began for me: in 1979, buying 45s at records stores with my allowance money…and now I’m buying my music on the internet with my credit card — innocence lost!

Am I really ready to end my search for new music? No, of course not…but I believe I have learned a valuable lesson: take a vacation, have fun, go out and see a cover band.

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8 responses to “More Cowbell

  • whyskeletonwhy

    I hear thee. I’ve come to conclusion many times before that I’m never going to hear a truly great song again. And it’s usually about that time that an album like ‘Since I Missed You’ by The Avalanches, or ‘Is This It?’ by The Strokes, or ‘Discovery’ by Daft Punk comes out. Then 10 years go by and I think now this really is it, now I really am never going to hear another great song again, and Pumped Up Kicks by Foster the People or Lust for Life by Girls or My Girls by Animal Collective comes out and I quietly go about my business again, realizing I really don’t know anything.

    • thinfinn

      “Realizing I don’t know anything”…

      Sounds like wisdom to me! Thank you for reminding me it might take a bit of time for the next song or album to capture me.

      I do love that Pumped Up Kicks song.

  • Trevor Black

    I’ll go a step further with what whyskeletonwhy said, in that I’ve been listening to music since 67′ I was born in 61′ (“to sir with love” LULU) but I’d say my brain started comprehending in the latter…”the more you find the less you’ve been around” (QOTSA) it’s happen to me a million times, and I hope it happens a million more because then your still paying attention.

    (The Balconies) is a new Toronto band that’s gonna kick ass hard! Interpol, new old band, kicks ass hard! (QOTSA) is built from a band call (Kyuss), ass kicking band! But so, is (Fu Manchu) also and ass kicking band (Black Rebel Motorcycle Club), ass kicking band! …and the list goes on & on…

    the music is there, if you want it…

    • thinfinn

      I want the music, my friend.

      You have been in the game for a while (’67). I love your enthusiasm and the term “new old band” — love that.

  • Joe Iriarte

    I probably haven’t been to see a cover band in twenty years or so, but it sounds like fun.

    I’m embarrassed to admit that I’ve become That Guy. I blame MP3 players. Since I’ve had the ability to walk around with 10GB of music on me, I’ve pretty much stopped discovering new music, unless it’s by an artist I already love or happenstance shoves it in my face. It’s not that I don’t believe there is good new stuff–although I will say that the usual sources are no longer set up to beam stuff that’s to my tastes. But mostly it’s just that I have so much music I already like that it’s easier to keep listening to the same old songs than it is to try and discover new stuff. :-\

    • thinfinn

      I once heard that people have more music now than ever before in history. It’s crazy how much stuff you can put on an iPod. I know what you mean about the usual sources not reaching you like they used to. I’m hoping for Happenstance to happen to you. I believe it will!

  • Bill

    Saw them too….who is that dreamy guy hiding behind the skins?

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