Pearl Jam/Target

Who gives a shit?  This is news?

Pearl Jam was the leading act of the nineties.

Radiohead paves the way in the twenty first century.

Furthermore, Pearl Jam’s very first album was its very best.  And only hard core fans care about what the Seattle rockers are releasing today.

They’re gonna get a big check from Target.  Even though Best Buy and Wal-Mart are better partners and would sell more product.  Target will do a ton of advertising.  But despite the carpet-bombing hype, the album still won’t sell much.  More than the band’s recent opuses, but not much more.  Because, like I said, their music is WAY past its peak.

As for the fans crying sell-out…  Boofuckinghoo.  Recorded music is essentially a giveaway.  So the band is trying to monetize its efforts.  And has a big enough name that a big corporation, ignorant as to the band’s limited reach, will pony up some bucks.  Their kids need new shoes just like yours.

But wouldn’t it have been better if the band did something innovative?

Maybe JUST released the hundred dollar box, for fans?  That’s right, the hard core gets the CD, the vinyl, the MP3s and a signed book.  Hell, make it $70 unsigned, $150 signed.  The key is to get more from the hard core.

Pearl Jam will probably do this.  But Trent Reznor did it first.  Trent’s got the best marketing ideas.  If only his music was a bit more mainstream.

So, we’ve got no more heroes.  It’s sad, I agree.

You just can’t believe in anyone anymore.

Which brings us back to the great seer, John Lennon.

He only believed in himself, and Yoko.  You should do the same thing.  Your supposed heroes will let you down.  They’re no better than you are.  And now, with all this information on the Internet and the ability to respond/fight back, we’ve torn each and every star from his pedestal.  The only thing that remains is the work.

Funny how in a business that believes William Goldman’s mantra that nobody knows anything, Pixar is on a ten for ten streak.  Because the animation company isn’t about the sizzle, but the steak.  It’s not about the marketing, not about the penumbra, but the story.

It’s no different in music.  It revolves around the songs.  Shitty recordings of great songs will still break through.  Whereas no one wants pristine recordings of crap.

I haven’t liked Pearl Jam’s music in eons.  And despite the protestations of the hard core, almost no one else has either.  Instead of focusing on maximizing revenue, if only the band could focus on SONGS!  Create something as good as "Ten", even better.  Maybe they wouldn’t make more money, but wouldn’t they be more satisfied?  And wouldn’t this elongate their career?

Pretty soon, no one will want physical product.  These exclusive retailer deals are a last hurrah.  And I don’t give a fuck whether they’re done independently, or through a major label, bottom line is recorded music is the loss leader.  Yup, you make great records so people will go to see you live, so they’ll buy merch.  The key isn’t to get someone to buy your music and never play it (can you hear me Prince?), but rather to create something SO good, not only will fans play it, they’ll tell everybody they know about it.

If you don’t have ten tracks in you, record five or four or even one.  Quality is key, not quantity.  Acts record albums because of the price point, not because an artistic statement has to be an hour long.

As for Cameron Crowe shooting the commercials…  They’d probably be better off with Joe Pytka, someone who shoots commercials for a living.  Sure, Cameron featured band members in his movie "Singles", but when was the last time Cameron Crowe made a good flick?  He’s sailing on fumes too. They deserve each other.

Enough with the hoopla.  How about the work?  If you record a song as good as "Jeremy", I don’t care if you sell it on cassette tapes at Pep Boys, word will spread, people will hear it.  These old players just haven’t realized we’re living in the twenty first century.  Where something good can be known by the public in an instant, but something overhyped, more about marketing than music, can be almost completely ignored.

As for buying music at Target…  Isn’t that like buying weed at Bed, Bath & Beyond?  Or whips and chains at Toys"R"Us?  All those indie stores stocked every iteration of  the live show, and as payback…THEY GET FUCKED IN THE ASS!

Pearl Jam, the people’s band…


No better than the mercenary Eagles.  But at least the Eagles were big enough to partner with WAL-MART!  And despite bloat, there are some fantastic songs on "Long Road Out Of Eden".  As for this new Pearl Jam album..?  I’d say I’ll check out the leak, weeks before the record hits the shelves, but who really gives a shit.

Meanwhile, if they don’t make the album available at iTunes, they’re truly assholes.  You fight Ticketmaster, but to line your own pockets you don’t make the album available where your true fans want to buy it?  Oh, don’t tell me it’s available at your Website…  You can buy tickets at the box office too, but most people USE Ticketmaster.

You see Pearl Jam is not only not blazing a trail, they’re running in reverse, refusing to deal with present day reality.

Only one tune.  Truly great.  Given away for free online.  THAT would have a greater impact on the band’s bottom line than this Target b.s.  Then again, Pearl Jam are Americans.  Loath to think long term.  But the band used to…  They used to do what was right…

No more.

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