Saturday, August 17, 2013

Family Bands - a Marketing Enigma

When most people think of a "family band", the first one
that comes to mind is probably The Partridge Family.

But of course, they weren't a real family... they were
a confection, a fantasy, a freshly-scrubbed invocation
of rock and roll without the rock. Or the roll.

The Partridges were show-biz kids, climbing the ladder of success
on the backs of hundreds of real American families who
were making music together from sea to shining sea.

The difference?

These real family bands did not have the benefit
of the Star-Making Machinery behind the Partridge
Family's popular songs...

...and they suffered accordingly- toiling in obscurity
with nothing but their faith in each other and the love
of music to keep them keepin' on.

In a real family band, Mom is probably not a MILF
and big sister is likely not a total hottie. The eldest son
is not the kind of "looker" that inspires impure thoughts
in listeners young and old.

At the same time, the Middle Child is probably not
a junior drug-abuser on the fast-track to family court
and weekends in a juvie detention centre.

In real family bands, the family dog would never need
hearing aids by the time they were five either.

When we look at the faces of these family band members,
there is a searing sincerity that is almost painful.

Seeing these images, bereft of any and all production values,
it's hard not to imagine the music... and shudder.

What do these outfits say about the sound to our jaded eyes?

What do these hair styles imply about the musical arrangements?

And the frocks. Oh god, the frocks...

Can we help but wonder, just as we must when looking
at the lost siblings of the Partridge Family...

where are they now?


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