What’s a Wherever Session and Why Should I Care
I don’t often wish I’d been alive at times in the past when I wasn’t. Sometimes, though, I wish I’d been maybe eighteen or nineteen during Halloween Week of 1977.
Awfully specific. Sure it is. What’s the point of unrealistic fantasies if they’re not specific. The really disappointing thing about this is my dad was seventeen in that week, but he was into the wrong scene.
Anyway, here’s what happened inside of about nine days’ time around then:
Rocket to Russia by Ramones came out.
Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols by The Sex Pistols came out.
And News of the World by Queen came out.
There are those who say the events are related. Some people think they’re integral, in fact. There are those who say that had it not been for Ramones, there’d be no Sex Pistols, and if it hadn’t been for the Sex Pistols we’d never have “We Are the Champions” or “We Will Rock You” or any of Queens’ “cool” songs. Cool in the sense of “nah, he’s cool—he’s with me.” Cool in the sense that people you trust can vouch for it.
Because every now and then, rock and roll needs to be reminded that it is the people’s music. It is the heartbeat of the human race. It has no place creating bars of entry designed to prevent anyone who wants to be there from getting in and losing their shit over that sweet riff.
Sure, some gigs can be expensive. Why not? The band made it big. They can set whatever ticket prices they want. If rock and roll is an art form, though, it ought to occasionally be reminded that it’s an art form that began in skate rinks and bars. Yes, it can be the playground of visionaries and musical virtuosi. That’s as it should be. It’s good that we’ve been able to live in a world with Eddie Van Halen and Frank Zappa. It’s only right that these people should be able to play with the tools of the trade and invent things.
But for every Coldplay, embracing all of rock and roll’s decadence, it’s only right that there should be a Jack White, trying sometimes beyond the limits of good taste to be the lowest complexity blues rocker he can.
Every now and then, the world of music needs to be reminded that it’s for people and by people. It needs to be reminded that in 1955 Buddy Holly played “Blue Days, Black Nights” for a bunch of teenagers at a skate rink who were confused because they expected to hear more covers of the hits of The Crew Cuts, a band literally named after a clean cut image and less than a step away from a barbershop quartet.
Rock and roll is the heartbeat of the human race. The heart is (prior to the Enlightenment) the poetical seat of the conscience. Like the conscience, it should mostly reflect and support what’s happening in the organism, because mostly the organism is doing okay.
Sometimes, the conscience needs to intrude into the conversation and provide some course corrections. Which is why we had Buddy Holly, and why we had The Animals, and why we had punk, and it’s why we need cool little gigs playing wherever.
It’s not that the bar of entry into the world of rock and roll has created a music scene that’s impossible to break into unless you’re that one-in-a-million act that can break the walls. It’s not entirely that.
It isn’t even that, somehow, music has become something inaccessible and other that only lives in gilded treasure rooms, separate and captive and apart from the lives we live. That’s not the point of Wherever Sessions either.
Rock and roll belongs in the world and to its people. It’s part of the life in air. It should be something you trip over when you just expected to find an esoteric little knick-knack shop. It should appear in shady doorways that you’ve always wondered where they lead. It should live where you live, and you should be able to reach out and touch it.
Look at how our last one went.
Come support Brew Wild BCN by coming in at 7 PM this Wednesday evening and partake of epic pizzas and craft beers.
Ed. Note: April is a special time for us. Though Springtime is bashful and the Wintery cold snaps have made sunshine ever-so-missed, it's not too long now. Join us for our next Spring Edition. 9th of April, The Honeyclub is flying in from Germany. We're quite excited...