Why Should You Care What I Think?-Pt. 1
My wife sometimes chides me that I think my opinion on what’s good and bad music is the only one that counts. I feebly protest it’s not true, but then opine that I am more qualified than others to judge because I’m a musician and have spent my life playing, listening to, and studying music. Am I right?
I was a music and equipment reviewer for The Absolute Sound in the ‘80s and ‘90s and have written for numerous publications and A/V companies. I’ve been playing guitar professionally for 40-plus years. I bought my first good audio system right after graduating college. I chose “Music Is My Life” as my high school English Regents essay.
But my worldview was shaken to the core recently.
The first time I heard the singer/songwriter Rumer, I was smitten by her sweet voice–she moved me in a way few singers do. But she doesn’t tour the US much, and it took me two years to finally see her live, at a recent concert in Manhattan’s Damrosch Park.
She opened with “The Look of Love,” and I felt an adrenaline rush go through me. She was everything I expected and far more–that beautiful voice against a lush orchestral background, a dream come true seventh-row center. Thrilling! By the time she sang her third song, the heartbreaking “Take Me As I Am,” I was crying.
After the concert, I lingered, mesmerized. Then for whatever reason an older man came up to me and said, “You can throw that concert in the garbage!”
“She had nothing, no soul. Ehhh! She’s not an artist.” Um, I disagreed. After a few minutes, we left each other, amicably. Just another crank in New York City, I thought. Oy, everybody’s a critic. But I was rattled.
Frank Doris is the chief cook & bottle washer for Frank Doris/Public Relations and works with a
number of audio & music industry clients. He’s a professional guitarist and a vinyl enthusiast with
multiple turntables and thousands of records.