Thursday, 31 October 2013

An Ode to Badfinger

What makes a good music journalist? A thoughtful and insightful style coupled with a genuine passion for music? The ability to accurately convey the strengths and weaknesses of an album? Nah. I say it's more about being the hippest guy around, revelling in utter smugness as you write about a band before anyone else has. It's about you finding the most obscure music on your own and reviewing it.

So it's a shame that I've fallen in love with a band at the same time of millions of others- now I'm just another one of Those Guys, jumping on the bandwagon. But in this case it's totally shameless. I'm a proud fan of this band and I didn't even find out about them before anyone else. Yet a proud-as-punch comment such as "The Southern Comfort Advert brought me here" often provokes a torrent of abuse from fellow YouTubers. Why is that?

As the epic Breaking Bad came to its suitably epic conclusion a few weeks back (afterwards, I slowly sunk into a deep Breaking Bad-comedown), Vince Gilligan pulled one last rabbit out the hat by choosing to play a song called Baby Blue, by a little-known band called Badfinger. WOW! I, like millions of others, were immediately struck by the 70s riff, the heartfelt lyrics, the aptness of it all. Why hadn't I heard of this band before?

Suitably, the next few days were a glorious discovery of Badfinger- their chequered back-story is quite something by the way- and a belated recognition of their fine talents. And what did it take for me, a bit of a music obsessive, to hear them? A TV show. A bloody TV show. How dare I!? With all the bile and hatred spouted towards anyone who dares discover a band through television, I thought I'd be getting a knock on the door at any moment.

I'm now a fully-fledged member of the Badfinger fanclub (well, not literally) and am telling everyone who will listen about their mercurial talents- as should you. Music can unexpectedly come to us from a lot of different places. We should be championing this internet-fuelled era of music discovery- not berating people for being turned on to great music through non-traditional sources. So cheers, Vince Gilligan.

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