Sunday, June 19, 2005

Hey Jealous Rock Critic

The Gin Blossoms played the Sangamon County Fair Saturday night and the SJ-R's Nick Rogers had the gall to give them a less than glowing review. There is now a 90 percent chance that a letter-to-the-editor will run within the next few days that begins with a variation of the following statement: "I don't know what concert Nick Rogers was at, but I saw the Gin Blossoms and they totally rocked." It's the sarcastic remark de jure from a concert goer spurned by a music critic.

The letter will go on to touch on the following themes: the band tried really hard, everyone had a great time, and an indelible bond was cast between the band and its loyal fans. If the letter writer is sufficiently offended, she may even suggest that the music-hating Rogers pursue a different line of work. It's as inevitable as a slippery slope argument from an NRA member in response to a gun control measure.

Arts criticism is a tough gig because it's so subjective. Yet there are things that can be judged on an objective basis provided that the reviewer has the proper expertise. The SJ-R has been fortunate to have very good arts and entertainment editors over the years, from Rogers, to Matt Dietrich, to Tom from Iowa (his last name escapes me.) Unfortunately, they've also probably been the most vilified reporters on staff. I'm sure the temptation exists to just give everything a favorable review to keep the wolves at bay.

There's an opinion shared by many that if somebody has the moxie to take the stage to perform, who are we to judge. I agree, but only to point when money starts changing hands. At that point, slings and arrows are fair game and it's only then that accolades carry weight.

1 comment:

CaptainPlaceholder said...

Gin who?


Seriously, these guys sucked when they were popular.