After spending virtually the whole day waiting for the other shoe to drop from Touch & Go, which it never did and now it seems pretty sure it won’t, I spent this evening reading through the archive of Carrie Brownstein‘s Monitor Mix blog that she does for NPR. I can’t put my finger on it exactly but Brownstein’s writing is so measured, even when it’s passionate, and so clearly expressive I’m having a slight fit of jealousy. What she wrote about her experience in finding out the news about T & G is likely a reaction that has been had all over the globe. I just like the way she said it.
I read the news about Touch and Go today. I was sitting in a restaurant and I checked my phone and gasped; my friend actually asked what was wrong. Something is wrong. We are careening toward a paucity of experience and a paucity of means with which to evaluate music. I mean, can we really engage with art on a Web site and in a vacuum, without ever bothering to contextualize it or make it coherent with our lives or form a community around the work? If we never move beyond the ephemeral and facile nature of music Web sites — and let’s not lie to ourselves, that’s where it ends for a lot of us these days — then that makes us worse than blind consumers; it makes us dabblers. We have become musical tourists. And tourism is the laziest form of experience, because it is spoonfed and sold to us. Tourism cannot and should not replace the physical energy, the critical thinking and the tiresome but ultimately edifying road of adventure, and thus also of life.
I have my own take (surprise!) on this issue, too, but won’t get into it right now.
Oh, yeah, enjoy this, too…