2o years ago... I remember a vibrant music scene on the East End especially on weekend evenings. Places like the Quiet Man in Southold didn't get hoppin' until 10 p.m. or so and the crowd was there at 2 a.m. most weekends. People came out to see great bands like the King Charles Band and so many others, have a few laughs, etc. It was a good time for playing out as a musician or being a patron of the local watering hole.
Nowadays on a weekend evening you can drive by one of the few establishments that supports local indie music and you'd be hard pressed to see 10 cars in the parking lot most nights around 11 p.m. It begs the question, "What Happened?" First off, its NOT the music! I have heard most of the local talent on the east end being a professional musician and having a band myself. The music is quite eclectic most times, good material that deserves the support of its community.
For the bands that "do it right," it takes countless hours of rehearsing to write your own songs and get everyones ideas on the table when trying to put it all together with a full band. The result is a finished work that takes on the personality of its members. This is a work of art. People many times take music for granted. I feel a community almost has an obligation to take the time to support those who work so hard.
Being in a band I can tell you, there is a huge difference playing a crowd and playing a room. A crowd brings out the energy needed for a band to come to life and be expressive. Interaction with their crowd is of the utmost importance and it also gives them a good feel for their songs and direction. Having a crowd there to hear your works and react is always a good thing for an artist to help gauge and critique themselves.
I'm sure there are reasons why people dont go out as much as they once did. It's definitely not as true of points west. I am involved in the music scene up island and NYC. There is a huge difference in the support of local original music within 45 minutes to an hours drive.If you can get some feedback in your hometown, put together what you feel is your best setlist and then go west, your confidence is more solidifed.
So, what exactly happened? I'm really not sure. I'm hoping to enlist some feedback so many bands could get a better idea. Again, its NOT the music. Is it the willingness to go out? Maybe it's the change in population out here? Maybe fear of going to a bar and driving home? Maybe most folks are just happy with going to day shows at local vineyards. It could be a number of things. I think local artists would appreciate the feedback.
As a musician I can say that when 10 people come out to show support we are extremely thankful and appreciate each person for doing so. To them, we bow and give gracious thanks for their love and support. But I think more North Forkers need to take a shot one night and just go out to support a local band. Go to Four Doors and have a drink and hear some great local talent. Go for the music. They are so wonderful in their support of indie music. They are supplying the venue and bringing in the acts. Now everyone just needs to go and listen! Peace, Love & MUSIC~ GCS
Lots has happened this year. My band, Lesus Mor, has really been working hard writing and doing some recording. We are working on album #2 which will be titled, "Misfit Toyz". There's a story behind that but we'll keep that for a later date. I've written a bunch of new material on my own and with my crue. The gigs are coming. Things are really looking up for LMB. The main thing is it is ego free. Everyone has room for their creative expressions. This is what I wanted in my band. A team that consists of friends who love peace and music. So far so good... I took some time to jump in with some friends in a Bad Company tribute band. We played the Boulton Theater recently in Bayshore, NY. Was nice to be on stage rockin with my new brothers. Great people and a lot of fun as well. 2012 holds more shows, more songs and more friends/fans. I manage all our social network sites and it is growing by leaps and bounds. We have almost 1400 wonderful friends we share with. Meeting everyone is a true blessing. Networking and interacting with everyone is so much fun. We look forward to some festys and playing out more, enjoying this beautiful gift called music. It's so exciting. I created an extension of Lesus Mor called the Average Joe's Ecelctic Jam Parade. Its basically a partnership of sorts with other bands we will hook up with. The jam parade is an entity unto itself. Its musicians jamming in peace. Those with egos need not apply! There is no competition. We are unique as people and the same principle applies to music. Its unique to each individual. There's no stealing ideas, or "borrowing" ideas to create something close to them and then calling them your own. Sadly, I've come across a few that do such things. But thank goodness its an exception not a rule. The folks we hang with are good, solid musicians who have integrity. I've gotten much more activist in my attitude about country, life and the way things should be. Most of us agree on the same points of interest. I just feel a need to "say them" more than ever. Sometimes they come out in song. Sometimes in posts. Sometimes in public. If we dont speak up yet feel the pain and convictions in our hearts we doom ourselves to becoming irrelevant. Not for me!
So, I am hopeful the next blog will contain a lot of news about my bands, writing, peace and growth as a musician and artist. Until then, Peace Love & Music to all~
PS-go to www.reverbnation.com/lesusmor and check out Hey Lil Mama & Better Daze... Let me know what you think...
fes·tive/ˈfestiv/Adjective1. Of or relating to a festival.2. Cheerful and jovially celebratory.
As a NOFO musician, I know how many talented artists there are out here. And yet I hear of more and more each week. It's a fantastic miscalculation. There is nothing better than the arts and those willing to share them. Many times sharing is the problem. Many artists like to keep their gifts tightly packaged at home. Others write great songs but don't play out together or have opportunity. Then there are those that love to play out but venues opening up to them is sometimes difficult.
So, what does this all have to do with Festivus? I thought a blog about the plight of musicians on the North Fork "coming out" and getting some air time might be fitting. Why not in a Festival? Now I know many would say we have the NOFO Folk Festival and a few bands play on the barge etc. Those are great for music in general. They even have some local artists appear. Local can tend to mean Suffolk County at times too.
There are many bands and artists right here on the North Fork that should be encouraged to step up and share their gifts. How about a festival just for local talent? One day event! If a venue would step up and people would come together and network, we could have a wonderful showing of local talent. Would it be so wrong to have the NOFO known for not only its farm fresh veggies, etc. but also its MUSIC? Not at all!
Many musicians don't get the opportunity to play locally in front of their own friends and family often. They hit the road to go west. As fas as NYC many times. Some have done well and been at it a while. Others are starting out or unsure about actually leaving the garage. As a town, we could certainly encourage artists to share their gifts. It would be amazing to see them all. I heard a young lady sing at this years Relay for Life. She was amazing. I heard another young lady sing and play guitar recently. She is 14 years old and is phenomenal. Not all adults by any stretch.
Our yearly festival is very exciting. It brings artists we remember from the past back to graze in our fields while playing songs that will never easily be forgotten. There is some local talent present to fill in between the lineup changes. But I suggest a day once a year for our own artists to shine. To come together as one and write, jam, share and play wonderful music. How amazing this would be and good for the area as well as the participating venues.
As you can tell, this is a "think and react" blog. So... what DO YOU THINK? What are your feelings on it? How do you feel about local artists taking the stage? Would you go?
A little Festivus for the rest of us never hurt anyone! Peace, Love & Music!
Just recorded 4 new songs with Lesus Mor in the studio. Came out pretty good. Hope people like them and appreciate the depth of their meaning. That's what it's all about anyway :D