Wednesday, April 4, 2012

But damn the music was good.

After having wrapped up the book and getting it sent off for formatting and distribution, I was at the bank today doing some hocus-pocus with "pay me" and "pay you" accounts.

I saw a young lady wearing a Led Zeppelin t-shirt and I couldn't help but chuckle. She was my (adopted) daughter's age. Maybe a year or two younger, which would have her chasing the end of her teenage years.

We talked and she gushed about how cool the music was of the 70's and I agreed.

The 80's gave us Prince and Boy George, but thankfully that little ol' band from Texas was able to kick their ass, along with a blaze of blues known as Stevie Ray Vaughn. But both Texas legends were throwbacks to an earlier era with ZZ Top being a solidly 70's originating band, while Boy George was a throwback to, to. . .  to what, I'm not sure. A failed sex-experiment somewhere in Sweden with a couple of transgenders on LSD?


The 90's? I was too busy working sixty to ninety hours a week and shoveling as much money as I could into every investment portfolio I could find to even turn on a radio. The start of the new century began much the way the 90's ended--work, work, work. But every time I turned on the radio, all I heard was either garbage, or. . .  wait for it. . .

Music from the 60's and 70's. They called it Classic Rock.

I learned about the world serving in the military. I learned about people serving in federal law enforcement. I learned about making money working in Madison Avenue. And what I learned there was that when we used songs and soundtracks from the 60's and 70's, response to our commercials skyrocketed.

In 2002, I was making my plans to retire. In the ad agency world, especially if you were a creative, you made obscene amounts of money in an obscenely short amount of time. If you were smart (most weren't), you invested heavily because by the time you turned forty/forty-five, you were too old for the biz any more and you started either planning for retirement and a career change, or a career as a freelancer.

Social media was getting big and I was still trying to figure out how to program numbers into my cell phone. Thank God for admins and personal assistants that kept up with technology.

Some colleagues of mine at an agency called D'Arcy, Massius, Benton & Bowles in Troy, Michigan achieved the impossible: They got Led Zeppelin to sign over partial rights to a Zeppelin song to be used in a television commercial. For a car. An American-made car. The Cadillac.

After seeing the commercials run on the Super Bowl, I called up one of their managing directors I was friends with and congratulated him--then asked him how much it cost.  "$10 million smackeroos, plus residuals," he replied.

Have you heard of any major advertiser paying some rap-crap gangster $10 million to use his song music noise in a television commercial--or for anything else?

I find myself over at YouTube somewhat often and in between searching and viewing videos on airplanes and guns and Dobermans, I'll run across some classic music.

The Eagles, Tina Turner, Led Zeppelin, ZZ Top, Bob Seger, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Deep Purple, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Jerry Jeff Walker, Merle Haggard, Hank Williams, Jr., Lynyrd Skynyrd, Charlie Daniels, Grand Funk Railroad, Heart, Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Ray Vaughn, the Atlanta Rhythm Section. . .

The list goes on and on.

I get a chuckle at reading some of the comments on some of the YouTube videos, especially from the kids my (adopted) daughter's age or younger. Stuff like, "Damn! I wish I'd been born back then when there was GOOD music," seems to be the norm.

I don't miss bell-bottoms and I don't miss all the long hair and hairy faces. Hip-huggers are back and lower than ever (to my chagrin now that I find myself in a father role to a young lady that thinks thongs and low-slung jeans are THE thing. . .) and more midriff is once again showing.

We had good music back then, even if we had crappy clothes.


Rob said...

Have you listened to Pandora Internet Radio?? My family listens daily. My 13 yr old daughter loves to listen to music from the 80's. No crap music in my family. All 5 of my kids listen to Pandora.

Anonymous said...

This may get me banned from your blog but I don't care. It's called "Gangstagrass" and I think it's hilarious. Rap and blue grass? It sounds like a combination from hell...but listen to this boy playing 'Retard River':