Quote Of The Day

"Backstage (at the Oscars), Mr. Newman picked up on the weary, wrung-out mood when he responded to a chipper college reporter’s question about breaking into the music business by responding: ‘Who would want to break into it? It’s like a bank that’s already been robbed.’"

Younger Audience Still Eludes the Oscars

Now that’s funny.

I lament Randy Newman’s exit from contemporary popular music, then again, he got out when the going was good and based on his last album, "Harps and Angels", he’s lucky to have a gig.

But long before he went into the family business and was rescued by Pixar Randy Newman was a lauded genius who lived up to the moniker.  You may know him from "Short People" and "I Love L.A.", but have you heard "I Think It’s Going To Rain Today"?  And we’ve lived long enough for "Political Science" not to be a joke, but reality.

Mr. Newman was intelligent with a sense of humor.

I wish I could say the same about the people running today’s record business.  They didn’t start it, they’ve been managers all their lives. Kind of like promoting concerts when it’s not your money.  It’s not the same.

Then again, it wasn’t Mo’s money.  Well, at first it was Frank’s.  But Mo (and Joe!) realized that you certainly needed hits, but hits were never guaranteed and while you were signing what was obvious you needed to sign what was good, because you never really knew, and to this day still don’t, what will catch on with the public.

You know who really doesn’t have a sense of humor?

All those people attending music business college.  Not only are they preparing to enter an industry that is dead, they fail to realize it was built by renegade entrepreneurs and will be rebuilt by same.  And entrepreneurship is not something they teach in these schools.  It’s all about getting a job at the bottom and working your way up.  Huh?

And Randy Newman wasn’t only funny off stage, he was funny on too.  His acceptance speech had the humor and blase feel of a…rock star.

You remember rock stars, don’t you?  People who dressed different, did whatever they wanted and didn’t care about the system, oftentimes giving it the middle finger?  That’s why we were drawn to them, they were our best selves, they were who we wanted to be, which is why we still go to the shows of the classic rockers and Randy Newman can fill houses whenever he chooses to go on the road.

As for the new acts?

So many of them are like those kids in music business college.  They watched a ton of MTV, they read Don Passman’s book, they know everything about the business but have got no soul.  It’s not about doing what people tell you to do, what’s expected of you, but doing something completely different.  Now more than ever, when it’s almost impossible to get people’s attention.

You can’t take yourself too seriously.  Tell me again why Tommy Mottola was revered?  And Doug Morris and Jimmy Iovine?  Jimmy is so intense you’d think he was brought up in Compton himself.  He’s got a warrior mentality.  When art was never about winning, but individuality.  Come on, tell me one other artist who mines the same territory as Randy Newman…  Before OR after!

This quote made me smile.  Because it’s true and Randy just whipped it off and…it’s a great analogy.

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