Wednesday, 9 November 2016

What Peter Frampton can tell you about Hillary Clinton (and Led Zep tribute bands can tell you about the revolutionary left)

As the left began to age, it split into two groups.

One began making middle of the road adult-oriented rock 
(Clinton, Blair & co. as, basically, Peter Frampton)

The other group became a covers band touring market towns and playing to handfuls of people 
(rev. left as, basically, a 55 y/o Robert Plant impersonator)

In the meantime, shit happened. The world turned, times changed. Some people died and some others entered adulthood. 

At first, increasing numbers of people realised that whatever it was Frampton was doing it wasn't for them; he was just doing what he'd always done. He didn't notice and he kept playing. Then increasing numbers of people just didn't know who he was. He kept playing (until one day he realised he was playing to himself) 

Similarly, increasing numbers of people also realised that if nostalgia was their thing, then listening to old Led Zep albums was always more fulfilling than seeing the tribute band down the Hope & Anchor. But the tribute bands kept forming. Then, increasing numbers of people realised that while nostalgia might be fun, it is really no more than a fondness for some of the past from the perspective of the present, and should never be mistaken for appreciation of something in the present, now, much less as something which determines the future. The tribute bands kept playing (until one day the Hope & Anchor became an apartment building and they had nowhere left to play)

All along, people wanted music that helped them articulate their hopes, dreams and fears.

Oh, and middle aged guys (like me) talking about the punk movement is no more helpful either. 

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