|RAY CAMPI'S REFLECTIONS
on the '98 GRAMMY AWARDS
(aka "AMATEUR NIGHT at the MENTAL INSTITUTION")
It is always interesting to view the Grammys on TV, watching the major label record company presidents and their producer cronies back slapping, bragging about their accomplishments which they bought with their own companies' monies.
The scene produces questions in my mind:
- How many of these boy wonders (women are rarely represented in these corporations) are the same arrogant oafs who have spent 30 years or more of their lives pushing drugs on to young children through the music industry?
- How much of their companies' resources have they spent buying drugs for worthless prima donna bands and charging these costs to the studio recording time? Is this still a common practice with these people? (A few years ago when I saw that Bubba had invited the Grateful Dead to play at his inauguration I knew our Presidency was on a downhill slide.)
- Why haven't the responsible news media of the world exposed the major label-dominated recording industry, holding it directly responsible for the glorification of illegal drugs and the sad effect it has had on the youth of the world?
- Why do four-piece "rock" bands spend thousands and months to record in a studio an amateur-sounding ten-song CD that most roots music bands could record in a weekend? I recorded Rockin' Around the House and mixed 20 songs all in six days. Broadway shows are recorded in one day.
- How many of the acts that these major record labels promote with unlimited resources, that they mistakenly call "artists," are really nothing more than anti-musical, unmusical, non-musical, anti-social poseurs and misfits who don't possess the skills to maintain the most un-intellectual, hourly time-clock job?
- Why is it that on the Grammy Awards the really talented artists from fields such as classical music, opera, jazz, rhythm and blues, real traditional country, real rock & roll (not "rock"), bluegrass, doo-wop, cowboy, Cajun, western, western swing, Hawaiian, real blues, big band, ragtime, hillbilly, and others are not represented on television but are given awards out of the spotlight early in the evening, and yet the amateur, six-month wonders of the "pop" (Is it really? Most normal people hate it!) field are given endless amounts of coverage and publicity?
- Why is it that the Grammy "know-it-alls" don't know that a form of music in the world, loved by millions of people of all ages called ROCKABILLY really exists?
- Why is it that so many thousands of skilled musicians and singers, both young and old, that are associated with traditional or roots American musical styles are considered by the major label kingmakers to be "old hat," "uncommercial" and "out of fashion," and yet the drug-sucker bands, the fuzz guitar sustainer-dominated aging clowns of the mid-Sixties and on, are never considered "old" or "over the hill" but continue to be on major labels even though most of the singers have terrible hoarse voices and can't sing any better than half-drowned frogs?
- Why are American musical forms from the past honored and revered in most countries of the world but not by the major label wizards of the United States, the country which spawned this music?
- Why are musicians who sit on chairs, usually guitarists, given Grammys under the guise that they are "putting on a show"? These lazy "chair-sitters" to me are embarrassing and should never be given awards of any kind. They should be in rest homes and should only be excused for their ripoff of public confidence if they are recovering drug addicts or if they are over 29 years of age and have reached senility.
- And finally: Why do CD's that cost $1.00 to manufacture cost $18.00 or more in the stores to purchase?
- Is the gullible music buying public still paying off the drug bills for these aging, croaking cadavers of the 1960's, 70's and 80's?
If you have any answers to these questions, please write and enlighten me.
RAY COMMENTS ON MORE RECENT GRAMMY BROADCASTS:
1999: Nothing's changed.
2000: Nothing's changed.
2001: Nothing's changed.
2002: Nothing's changed.
2003: Nothing's changed.
2004: Nothing's changed.
[Secondary schools English school teacher for over 34 years
recording artist for over 50 years (off & on).]
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