self-referential steve-on-steve dorkinglab blog-talk

RE: Re: Billy TK vs Smiths

…he gets back up for the second set and launches into an excoriating rendition of Midnight Sun which takes the top of your head off and messes wit’your brain a bit [and yes, the band can keep up] and then dedicates it to you when he’s done

Yup I’m aware of Mr TK’s heritage, and I’d simply add that longwinded guitarcentric 60s psychedelic rock is not quite up my alley either, even if Maori Jimi Hendix is one of the coolest monikers ever for a New Zealand musician [note to Graham Brazier: noone ever called you the Pakeha Mick Jagger so shut up you boring prick].

And when when I was 13 or 14 and doing the paper-round after school back in Tawa, my co-employees [slaves: we got about $2.50 a day] would lend me tapes for my walkman. Matt, the older brother of a friend of my brother, and what we would think of today as an “indie-kid”, lent me the Jesus and Mary Chain and The Smiths – it goes to show that the musical subculture of my adolescence was just a shade different to that of Steve’s and there was probably more Smiths going around than he thinks.

Totally appreciate the paper-round/Smiths anecdote – I had VERY similar experiences in 3rd/4th form with friends’-older-siblings and older-siblings’-friends which lead me to The Smiths, R.E.M. (pre-Green), Pixies etc etc. Equally, The Clash provided welcome relief from the bogan canon of Doors, Led Zep et al. It sounds like the “musical subcultures” of our adolescences were actually pretty similar? So I guess on reflection, maybe other people were listening to The Smiths at that time, just noone at my high school ever mentioned it. Maybe all the Smiths fans were too busy composing poetry in their bedrooms? The end result was that the dominant (near-universal) musical discourse of my high school years was the aforementioned bogan canon (later broadened to include Dead Kennedys and Nirvana), and a legacy of self-serving bitterness.

I just figured there were lots of young’uns at the Salford Lads Club gig who would have been five when The Smiths broke up – hence the implied reference to ‘false’ nostalgia – but really, that doesn’t mean anything, does it? So maybe I should shut the f**k up. On the other hand, maybe, like me, you occasionally suffer from that irritating music-snob tendency to get uppity when trendy people get excited about something you feel you “went there, did that” with many moons ago. Like the rugger-bugger “discovery” of Flying Nun classics in the wake of the release of the Topless Women talk about their Scarfies soundtracks.

Anyway isn’t nostalgia, authentic or not, just the privileged conceit of the bourgeoisie?

Not sure about nostalgia being distinctly bourgeois, or conceited. But I could be wrong.


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