Saturday, July 14, 2012

Editorial / Zine Review - Basements and Living Rooms

Basements and Living Rooms
66 pages / $2

Full disclosure: the audience for this zine is about 30 years younger than I am. Squeezing  into a basement with a group of loud, sweaty, possibly inebriated people is not anywhere on my list of enjoyable things to do. So on one level I have an innate bias of sorts. However, on another level I thoroughly enjoyed the spirit and intent expressed within these pages.

Music needs to be taken back from the commercialists and the corporations and American Idolatry. Music was never intended to be an “industry”. Music is something we are all capable of creating. Not that long ago, instead of X-boxes and ‘rock band’, people had pianos or guitars, or other instruments in their living rooms. Before arena rock, the joy of music involved sharing moments with our friends in an intimate space.

House shows are a way of returning to, or evolving, how music was meant to be – homemade, unpretentious, heartfelt, warts and all – not the glittery ‘perfection’ found on television singing competitions. Basements and Living Rooms – A Zine About House Shows and DIY Music is infused with personal stories, perspectives, and experiences of DIY bands and practical advice on setting up your space as a performance venue. This zine is generous with comics, photographs, and practical information. I’ve even heard one of the bands (out of dozens) mentioned – Mega Bog. Maybe I’m not so old after all.

My advice:  tear up your U2 tickets (or whatever mega tour is happening this year) & make your own scene. 

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