Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Will The Real Steve Perry Please Sit Down?
If your favorite artist or band, long after their prime, decides to return to the spotlight either with a record or a tour, is this a good thing?
Of course, there are a few minor details and stipulations that would need to be discussed before giving a definitive answer. In the case of the Faces, two keys members are dead, and one obviously big member, might as well be. So, yes...play on? Or, no...go back inside and let the kids have fun.
How about the recent smattering of shows from the Left Banke, or who I'd like to call the Only Two Left Banke? I know people who went bananas over seeing these shows. Yet my first thought was, "You've got to be kidding?"
Lead singer Steve Martin and main songwriter Michael Brown were both not involved. This left the bass player, who barely played on the original recordings (those duties were performed by Joe Mack and John Abbott), and the drummer, who from what I've seen in videos, didn't play the drums on too many songs live. So, here is "The Left Banke" and what...10 strangers on stage? Why do I want to see this? Why not just call yourself The Beatles? To me, that is just as offensive.
Or how about Journey, successfully selling out arenas with a lead vocalist look and soundalike?
The Lovin' Spoonful without Sebastian and Zal? That has been happening, you know.
At what point is any of this good news for the fans? Or is it all good news? Are we just being cranky?
As I've mentioned on these pages before, I am a huge Queen fan. And I loved Free, and liked Bad Company. But, seeing Paul Rodgers with Brian May and Roger Taylor (John Deacon brilliantly opted out) touring as Queen, really gave me the twitch. As IF anyone could replace Freddie Mercury. But I'd like to add, I don't think Rodgers voice fit ANY of Queen's songs, so I just didn't like what I heard. It was a different band. Would I have enjoyed this lineup more if it was called "PBR?"
When Ian Hunter left Mott The Hoople, they carried on with a different guitarist and a lead singer who sounded not unlike Minnie Mouse, but at least they changed the name of the band...slightly.
I've listened to the Faces live reunion show 4 times. I can't get enough. What strikes me is how good it sounds. I think that's the key. It is also what some friends have said about The Left Banke. It just sounded so good. Yet, that doesn't seem to be enough.
Any thoughts on why?