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> When Band Members Change
Ben Higgins
post Nov 27 2014, 11:43 AM
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A group of people together form a band. After all, the word 'band' is another word meaning a group of people. The results of their collaboration could be described as what defines that band so if the band changes, is it the same band ?

People have differing views on this. I don't think there's a right or wrong answer. Does it even matter if there is a right answer anyway ? Not really, but who cares ? We like discussing stuff that doesn't really matter. All the fun is in exploring different viewpoints and considering things we haven't considered before.

Most of you have probably seen by now the news of Megadeth's latest lineup upheaval. That's what got me thinking about this subject.

When these sorts of things happen many people declare things like 'It's not xyz anymore' it's 'a cover's band' or 'hired guns' or even the overly dramatic 'xyz is dead'.

So why would people think that ?

If a band has had a stable lineup for a certain period, naturally people get used to that lineup, particularly if that lineup has recorded well received, 'classic' albums and if the members have a particularly valuable and appreciated contribution to either the song writing or performance aspects. How many times have we wished for a certain classic lineup to get back together again or at least seen others wish for it to occur ? It's no wonder bands relent and go for the dollar when a classic reunion tour is touted as a suggestion. A lot of people want it. To many people, the only value of that band is with their classic lineup and their classic songs.

Sometimes it's not about classic lineups so much as people just getting fed up with a constantly shifting lineup. We can all think of bands that are essentially one or two person acts but if members are constantly coming and going, new people drafted in to finish tours etc then it brings home that reality a little too much and it can be hard to accept that band as anything other than a solo act with hired guns.

So, when lineups change is it the same band ? In name only, I would say. The creative force may remain unchanged if the key players are still there but in many cases the creative force was a particular chemistry that only came alive with certain people and if certain people are no longer involved then the chemistry definitely isn't the same. Does it matter, though ? Does it stop us enjoying a band live or accepting them ?

I don't think so. The music can still be performed and if one or more original members are performing it then it's as near as damn it, surely ?

It's not unlike classical composers having their music recited through the centuries... today we can enjoy music composed by Beethoven, Mozart and Bach. The orchestral players certainly weren't involved in the writing process so does that mean we're not listening to Johann, Wolfie and Ludwig ? I know it's not exactly the same.. we're going to the concert to listen to the music of those composers but they're not advertised as the performers. But eventually it boils down to the same kind of thing. We're listening to music that is associated with a particular name.

What do you think ?


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Spock
post Nov 27 2014, 12:26 PM
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QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Nov 27 2014, 05:43 AM) *
So, when lineups change is it the same band ? In name only, I would say. The creative force may remain unchanged if the key players are still there but in many cases the creative force was a particular chemistry that only came alive with certain people and if certain people are no longer involved then the chemistry definitely isn't the same. Does it matter, though ? Does it stop us enjoying a band live or accepting them ?



This is what I think as well. The "BAND" we get use to, is the lineup of people that got us interested in the band in the first place. The bands unique components, and the tension those components make to collaborate to push out an idea (or song) is what makes each band unique.

I know that typically when a member leaves a band, that band is no longer the same for me. I felt that way about Incubus when bass player Dirk Lance left. Incubus got another awesome bass player, and the band is as tight and talented as ever, but their material, post Dirk Lance, just doesn't hit me in the same place spiritually.

Same thing with Queensryche after Degarmo left. They were a tragedy to watch with every incarnation since - now 2 bands playing the old Queensryche songs, both seem like cover bands and both not coming up with any new material that intrigues old Queensryche fans.

It's the chemistry of the members - and once that chemistry changes, it makes up a different component. The different component can attract new fans that resonate with this new tension, but many times alienates the fans that were attracted to the original resonance of the components.

Rush would never be Rush without 1 of those core 3 guys. Etc.

There are cover bands that dedicate themselves to playing and even looking like other bands - but they are still cover bands. These bands can even sound and perform better live in some instances - but it's the rawness of the creative cohesion of the original members that make the band - for all purposes, it's chemistry. Not perfect, just chemistry.

I saw Pink Floyd live many years ago. Without Waters though, it wasn't Pink Floyd, and there were so many people on stage, including all the other original members, that it came across as a massive studio production and not raw chemistry. They sounded great, but the concert left me with no spiritual fulfillment whatsoever.

So, that's my 2 cents anyway. smile.gif

This post has been edited by Spock: Nov 27 2014, 12:30 PM
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Todd Simpson
post Nov 29 2014, 04:26 AM
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Great points! Sadly, "Career Momentum" is all that is carrying some of these "Bands" forward. For example, L.A. GUNS. Another 80's band that now has TWO VERSIONS running around pretending to the only real version.

But hey, it's not easy to make a living these days and these bands are riding on their reputation and some don't include any original members. The "Brand" alone of some bands is powerful enough to fill a show and sell some shirts. Any band having reached this status is a somewhat viable business entity and as long as it can sustain itself and pay those involved, momentum will carry it forward.

Of course, this doesn't make for amazing music. Just makes for lots of bands who are actually cover bands of themselves. Like DEF LEOPARD smile.gif


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Ben Higgins
post Nov 29 2014, 11:03 AM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Nov 29 2014, 04:26 AM) *
and some don't include any original members. The "Brand" alone of some bands is powerful enough to fill a show and sell some shirts.


I know you're all thinking the same as me... SUGABABES, right ?

Tell me you were.





Please.




tongue.gif


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Todd Simpson
post Nov 30 2014, 04:14 AM
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Actually thinking LA GUNS and QUEENSRYCHE but now that you mention it, I had to go google "Sugababes" but now I get it smile.gif

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sugababes


\\
QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Nov 29 2014, 06:03 AM) *
I know you're all thinking the same as me... SUGABABES, right ?

Tell me you were.





Please.




tongue.gif



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Ben Higgins
post Nov 30 2014, 10:25 AM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Nov 30 2014, 04:14 AM) *
I had to go google "Sugababes" but now I get it smile.gif


Sorry for doing that to you ! laugh.gif


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