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Concert as play and the new cultural evolution.

Evolution without death? Old bands made new?
  [vote for,

The following: a grande pense with hopefully some inventions.

Consider evolution. With most animals, older generations die and their offspring carry on the genes. If an animal did not die, it would compete with its offspring for mates and resources. Some organisms which are better adapted to their environments than their offspring still die, even though if they could remain young, they would remain competitive.

There are some relatively ageless organisms which do persist and compete with offsrping. Redwood trees are an example. Ancient trees compete directly with offspring. It is not so bad.

I propose that until recently, music evolved as organisms because there were not permanent ways to record cultural expressions. Music had to be sung or played, and then was gone until sung or played again. Recordings are a recent invention, and excellent and reproducible digital recording very recent. I thought of this after observing some teenagers grooving to rock from the late 70s: this ancestor has not died, but is competing with its descendants: a musical redwood.

How to parlay this into greater commercial success? Realizing that individual songs as initially released remain competitive with later arrivals, I propose that the rest of the apparatus of the music industry be reverse engineered around them. For example, consider Led Zeppelin. Led Zeppelin 4 would be rereleased - not as a sentimental thing or a best of, but with all the press and fanfare accorded a new album. The group would make media appearances and tour in support.

"The group" would not be the original elderly band members. Rather, lookalike actors would play the parts of these band members - in effect becoming Led Zeppelin. This act would continue off stage, with the actor representing a modern avatar of the original star on and off stage: such a continuing "life" act has many parallels. The concerts would be recreatings of the original concerts, updated for the times - the original concert recording remastered and lipsynched. It would be like a Broadway revival instead of an original concert.

Like the redwood trees, reincarnated immortal acts in their purest form would not be capable of innovation, but rely on the aspects which made them popular initially. The redwood trees get away with this.

bungston, Oct 03 2007

Menudo http://en.wikipedia.../wiki/Menudo_(band)
Someone has tried this. To mixed success. [Galbinus_Caeli, Oct 04 2007]


       The problem with a tribute band is that I suspect the musicians want to be recognized as themselves. Also, they play their own music. I envision a Borat-like adoption of the persona of the star, on and off stage, with the original sounds of the star lipsynched. The acting skill will be more important than the musical skill.   

       I am not sure how the rerelease would go, since plenty of critics will remember the original album and say: yeah, so what, I have that record. Some reissues try to add bells and whistles - new cuts, etc. The old music can compete on its own merit, but maybe the novelty of having a new and beautiful Robert Plant will distract from the routine of an old album reissued.   

       In the celebrity-fascinated culture we live in, a new avatar of a rock legend will have big shoes to fill. I am sure the media will watch to see to what degree the shoes are filled. It will help that the music is good.   

       sheesh, the comment I was answering has already disappeared. It was something about tribute bands.
bungston, Oct 03 2007

       /Musical redwood/ We would say dinosaur.
david_scothern, Oct 04 2007

       I recently went to see "The Rat Pack" on stage. their look and sound-a-likes did a fairly decent job. can't say i would enjoy U22, but maybe other people would. the joy of a "fresh" band is exactly that; it's fresh.
k_sra, Oct 04 2007

       I've seen the rock group Chicago in concert a few times. They have no _original_ band members left, but a few from the early years. Their music has evolved over the years, yet they still reproduce hits from decades past.   

       Why not let the performance and the music continue to evolve?
ed, Oct 04 2007

       Evolution is inevitable and will go on regardless. But if technology gives a work of static art the possibility of competition with more evolved forms, why not facilitate it? There is a big difference between an redwood and a dinosaur.
bungston, Oct 04 2007

       (-) Too grande for my taste. It seems that all this idea has going for it is "why not?", and that's too little.
jutta, Oct 04 2007

       I was recently pondering the fact that an idea could be "too grande" or otherwise disagreeable, yet remain posted on this site. That wonderful and amazing fact, which is not the case for many other sites. I am happy to take that bone.
bungston, Oct 04 2007


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