My pal Rio DeGennaro of the Kansas City band The Big Ugly Guys wrote a full length response to my Kurt Cobain/Gaynel Hodge story (posted this morning immediately below.) However, it was too long for the "comments" feature.
I obviously don't agree with everything he says, (I believe there was plenty of joy and rebellion in the old Seattle sound) but Rio's a smart guy and his full response is worth reading. Plus I like his band. So here it is:
Great story, Steve.
I never really understood where all the BS about being the voice of teenage angst came from, and how Nirvanna was the medium for Corbain's status as spokesman for Gen X or whatever they were called. Grunge was the reason I bought a guitar and started my band to try to preach the fun and rebellion of rocknroll to people. I know that may seem to be an outdated idea but I still believe the reception of rock is in making people get out of their seats and shake their ass.
I never subscribed to the dark visions of the music of the Doors, the Velvet Underground, Black Sabbath. I kinda thought the record companies were using the weirdness in people brought out by the excesses of uninhibited lifestyles to make a buck. The whole Seattle thing to me is just a reverberation of the NW heroin scene that seemed to play on the disconnect
of youth at the time. Me, I've never been into smack or downers, so I just couldn't relate at all. A buncha minor key tunings do not make a memorable song to my ear. Have you heard anybody walking down the street whistling "Teen Spirit"?
Our local alt. rag, "The Pitch", had a music editor who hooked up with a local studio and tried to ram midwest grunge down everyone's throat.. The only bands who ever got favorable reviews were recorded at that studio with the same riff heavy hand. Totally sucked. We had plenty of great bands spread across the musical spectrum from jazz to blues who couldn't get the time of day in the paper. Me, I still get the cold shoulder from a lot of the clubs and businesses associated with the ass. I made the mistake of writing a letter to the editor pointing out the fact that "...you can't recreate the grunge scene in KC with 3.2 beer and road weed". My point being pretty obvious to anyone who bought records for 50 years.
I spent many a night trying to get a little sweater in the back seat of the car parked in some lover's lane listening to "Earth Angel" and "Tonight's the Night" and "Silhouettes". Aaaah, the glories of submarine race watching doo wop.
Now that was all rocknroll and all missed by kids today. Who wants to slow dance with some whiner mosh pit enthusiast.
I use to always want to be alive 100 years in the future. Now I'm just not so sure about the future.
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