The Best of the Golden Geese

Why the Beatles are the Greatest Band in History (Even though I like AC/DC a lot more)

Authors note: I wrote this piece a few weeks ago and never posted it.  I showed it to a friend and he liked it and said that I should post it.  Let me know what you think and maybe if enough people like it, I will post some more weird stuff like this.
            To celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary Jay-Z and Beyonce uh, uh, (I guess her last name must be Z), visited Cuba.  My wife and I just celebrated our sixteenth anniversary, and every year I’ve wished that we could go to Cuba. (I mean, who doesn’t?)  We were a little short of cash and time so we had to settle for a Friday night fish fry.  I’m so envious. (Not jealous, oh yeah, I’m not envious either.)
            In order to make a point and stay on the celebrity theme here, I’m going to say that even Stevie Wonder can see through this one.  If you were a rich celebrity, why would you go to go to some shithole country like Cuba for your anniversary?  Most wives would pissed off if their husbands bought them a washing machine for an anniversary present even if they had been saying that they needed a new one for months.  Imagine if you told your wife that you were going to spend as much money as going to the Bahamas only you were going to take her somewhere really crappy.  You probably wouldn’t have to worry about what to do for your next anniversary.
            There was an earthquake in Haiti a few years back and some celebrities went there to at least symbolically lend a hand.  Even for those whose main intention was to garner publicity, their effort had at least some degree of nobility.  Haiti has still not fully recovered.  If they wanted to help out some poor people in the Caribbean, they could have gone there, but this Cuba thing is so not that.
            Celebrities have it a lot tougher now days.  It’s a constant struggle for any artist to remain relevant.  Music in particular, has been divided up into so many genres and subgenres that being number one in any particular category does automatically make someone a household word.  There are about, as many country music fans know whom Jay-Z is, as rap fans that know who Joe Diffie is.  Back in the 1960’s, my grandparents did not like or listen to the Beatles but they definitely knew who they were and so did everyone else. 
Back then, what dominated the radio airwaves was the general category called pop music.  It was made up mostly of rock, but included R&B, soul, country, and any songs from other genres that were popular enough to crossover.  Any band or artist that was good (or lucky) enough to consistently be in the top ten on the pop music charts was guaranteed to have worldwide fame.  Aside from actually purchasing a single, LP, or 8-track tape, about the only way to hear music, was to listen to the radio where someone else chose what you heard.  The cool (or lame) thing about it was that people were exposed to all types of music besides just the type that they considered their favorite.
            Today we can download only the songs we want, and ignore the rest, and we can listen to programs and even channels that not only concentrate on one genre, some are even limited to a single artist or band.  No more hearing Terry Jacks’ “Seasons in the Sun” immediately following Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water”.  Most people feel that all of this is an improvement, but it pretty much insures that no band will ever as popular as the Beatles.  An increasing number of genres and number of people that only listen to one genre necessarily decreases the audience size for each.   
Imagine how many people became Beatles fans simply because the Fab Four’s songs were playing in the background during the best times of their lives.  They’d have a much harder time today.  They would probably only be heard on satellite radio and relegated to some subgenre like “British Light Rock”. 
This is not to say that the Beatles don’t deserve credit for their popularity.  The number of hits they had speaks for itself.  They were able to change with the times and still produce hits, all of their members went on to have successful solo careers, and they remain popular to this day.  You can count the number of bands that can say that about themselves on one hand, even after you had that accident with the table saw.
Now what was I talking about?  Oh yeah, Jay and Beyonce Z.  Was this just a publicity stunt?  If so it was a pretty lame one.  Both of these people are on top of their game right now, more popular than ever.  This Cuba thing however, isn’t going to affect their popularity one way or another.  The majority of their fans could not find Cuba on a map, never heard of Fidel Castro, have no knowledge of U.S.-Cuba relations, and wouldn’t care if they did.  The majority of people who might be bothered by Jay-Z and Beyonce’s Cuba visit don’t listen to their music anyway.
It has been reported that adoring fans swarmed them.  Since they are both products of American culture, I’m surprised that the Cuban fans weren’t accused of being counter-revolutionaries and arrested or shot on sight. 
Maybe they are trying to emulate other great statesmen like Dennis Rodman and Sean Penn. (Maybe I’ll write about these two idiots in the future.)  This whole thing was just a way for them and their leftie buddies to stick it to those who have traditional American values understand the importance of standing up for their principles.  Too bad for the Z couple and their leftie friends, music industry is now way it is, and this whole thing will quickly be forgotten.  Mr. and Mrs. Z may be on top in their respective genres, but neither one will ever be anything like the Beatles.    

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