Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Rare Band

I am becoming increasingly interested in people’s perception of music. (Please note the double alliteration in that sentence. It’s quite quality.) All of it can be summed up into an obsession that today’s music lovers tirelessly pursue.

And this, readers, is the concept of The Rare Band.

Yes, The Rare Band. A band that only you have heard of, that you listen to endlessly on your iPod, and tell people about, knowing that the interaction will be something like this…

And soon you’re the cool kid on the block. People ask you how you’ve seen them three times live, and you reply...

YOU: Well, they’re pretty rare, so most of the time they were in secret basements of people that give these secret shows of only rare bands.

THEM: WOW! How cool! So are they like “indie” or something?

YOU: Indie? What? No, this band LAUGHS at Indie rockers. You clearly don’t understand the concept of The Rare Band.

THEM: Oh haha. I guess I have a lot to learn. So how can I see them? Can I go online to look them up?

YOU: HA! Online? What are they, Nickelback or something? No, you can’t go online to find these guys. They’re much more elusive. The only reason I could see this band is because I have connections. I know a guy who knows a guy who works with another guy who told me what to do. So on a certain rainy night I wore the correct color of Converse shoes as I walked past a the correct streetlight downtown and was given a password written in Braille that I had to translate into Chinese, then French, then English so I could read it backwards to they guy at the door while making the correct number of clicks and whistles with my mouth, just so I could see this rare band. They were awesome.

THEM: That’s totally rad. How many people were there?

YOU: Only a few. Super small secret venue. So awesome.

THEM: Wow. I wish I knew rare bands.

And you become even cooler.

But you must be careful, cool kid. You tell too many people about this band, and soon they’ll be showing up on…dare I say it? 

[May we take a quick second to talk about how this is not that far off from a majority of actual radio station logos? And it took me five minutes. On PowerPoint. Anyway...]

How dare I even joke about such a horrible thing! To imagine that your band, your beloved rare band who no one but you has ever heard, is now being played as background music in drab offices across the country, is simply painful. This formally rare band now has millions of fans from all over the place, instead of just you and a few others who were in the know. Humiliating! Infuriating! The only possible reaction that will save your dignity is this…

You knew them before they were big. It wasn’t you who changed, it’s them. So now you’re off to find an even rarer band, one who is so rare only you know about them.

The truth is, however, that the idea of The Rare Band is a complete fallacy. A good band will be noticed and shared and ultimately become successful. No band made up of committed people who have all given up their jobs to pursue their dream wants to be seen by only a few people. So even if a band is "rare" for awhile, it won't stay that way if it's any good.

(Allow me to also throw in that I'm not saying that all good bands will end up on mainstream radio. If I said that, I would also have to say that Britney Spears is a good artist. Absolutely not. No no no no no no no. No way in hell. Nope. Never. But good bands will be noticed. That's all I'm saying. Britney Spears doesn't count as an actual artist.)

So let’s give up this “rare band” idea, people. It's a waste of time. To help with this, I’ve created some message t-shirts as a sort of therapy. (I may or may not have gotten carried away once I discovered Zazzle offers models to help you see what your t-shirt will look like.)


  1. HAHAHAHAHAHAH That last shirt kills me! I love how awkward it is and the way "om" makes its own line. Gosh.
    The shirts are awesome, this whole post is a nice length and very hilarious.

    5 stars.

  2. OMG there were a few new shirts I didn't notice before. I love the incorrect grammar and awkward models! Bah!

  3. The models of the shirts were...awfully, horribly, incredibly, awesome. It makes the site worth visiting just for that!

    I feel like the beginning of this post stems from you relinquishing your hold on Punch Brothers to me...I'm glad I could contriubute to your incredible interest in people's perception of music!

  4. oh my freaking gosh, this is a hilarious post! I totally agree Brian, any GOOD band WILL be noticed, so all those hipsters out there need to GET OVER IT!!

    so ... where can I get one of those t-shirts? seriously, I really like the first women's tee you posted. where, when, how much? let's get those hipsters and prove that it's OK for bands to be recognized for their talent! :D

  5. I don't get it? This makes no sense. There are lots of good bands who never get noticed. I can name at least 5. Dude, seriously. Btdubbs, make sure your hand writing is legible. I totally have no idea what those pictures are about. This is like the worst post you have done.(oh and you aren't the ultimate rare band. bands are technically defined as having more than one person. you sir are a singer/performer. so thus technically not a band. [putthatinyourjuiceboxandsuckit])

  6. Wow! I had no idea so many people would want these shirts! There are some people on facebook who want them too. That's hilarious. They took me about five minutes to make on Zazzle.

    Glad you like it, Christie, and Josh! Hello, JOSH!!

    And Ms. Kielley, if you're joking, HAHA I LOVE SARCASM. It's awkward that one can't tell the tone someone has when it's typed in Georgia font or whatever the heck it is. :)

    And if you're serious, sorry you didn't like it. My handwriting isn't the best sometimes, but I'd say it's legible enough for at least a small amount of comprehension. The secret is close one eye, and put the hand over the other while leaving just a little gap between your index and middle finger to make out each individual word. Oh, and you have to be standing on your head. Usually, if three couch cushions are underneath you, that also helps. But they can't be any shade of green. And indoor lighting usually doesn't work, so if you go outside, stand on your head, and cover your eyes on top of three couch cushions, then making out the words is a little easier. (Don't forget an extension cord for your computer, unless your battery can handle it!) I expect nothing less from the followers of my blog.

    As far as good bands that never get noticed, I'm not talking about national recognition, necessarily. I'm saying that they will attract a following. Those "at least 5" bands that you talked about attracted you because they're good, right?

    And I enjoy making jokes about how my music isn't as popular as I want it to be. I have just a little bit of an idea about what a band is, and you're right, I am in no way an actual band. Nor am I any other kind of band (rubber, silly, color, wedding). This mistake was a horrendous typo that must be taken care of immediately. I will alert the people at Google who work tirelessly through the night, pedaling on electric bikes that keep the backlight of your computer shining. I mus warn you, however, that when you suggest a change because of a mistake like this, at least three of them have to get off their exercise bikes to go move the letters around. So you may expect your computer not to have any power from midnight to about six in the morning. It's a pretty routine procedure.

    Anyway, sorry you didn't like it. I've never tried to suck a bunch of unnecessarily critical words through a juicebox straw before, but I'll let you know how it goes.

    Love you,


  7. P.S. I tried it. The word "Btdubbs" got caught in the bendy part (I think because of the consonants), but once I worked it out with a pipe cleaner (I find more uses for them all the time!) the words just slid through! I'm wondering, though, do they come in mango?

  8. I thought I recognized Josh in the first few drawings! :-)

    Love the t-shirts. The last one is hilarious! The John Mayer one cracked me up.

    Nicely done. From start to finish.

  9. I appreciate your use of the word "quality" in this post. I'm glad to know my limited vocabulary is rubbing off on you.

    I'm wondering though, if I say something critical about your blog, will I get a 446 word response as well? Because if that's the case, I'll start working on my snarky replies asap. I will expect the full 446 word response though. No gypping me by only writing like 389 words.