Thursday, May 18, 2006

Why Is Your Alt-rock So F*ing Loud?

You know what I hate about funky Austin coffee shops? Their funkiness. I can generally tune out the bad art. A typical example would be a series of photos of drawings done in the foam of a cappucino. To complete the look, the photos are in frames made of popsicle sticks. While horrifying, these are more or less avoidable.

However, while there are many things I can tune out, alt-hippie-guitar/accordian
-whiny-girl-rock is not one of them. Especially when it is turned up WAY TOO LOUD. I had my headphones cranked up to drown out the noise, and even that didn't mask the banshee wail in the background.

I'm sure one of the coffee mistresses is in a funky band and this is her plan for getting the band noticed: someone will hear their "music" over the loud speaker and say "My god, what talent! Where is this wailing woman and how quickly can I get her a record contract?!"

This delusion is only rivaled by people who "perform" karaoke thinking they'll be spotted by a talent agent. Come to think of it, wasn't this the plot of the Coyote Ugly movie where the girl tended bar/jiggled all in the hope of becoming a songwriter?

Speaking of Coyote Ugly, has anyone seen the cable show where the Coyote Ugly bus travels around to locate new "coyotes" (aka girls) for the bar to open in Austin?
I saw about 20 minutes of the show one night as I was getting dressed and I was thoroughly appalled.

The girls auditioning see Coyote Ugly as their career gateway, like it's the marijuana of career moves. One girl, a professional cheerleader, was crying when she got cut by Lil, "the tought-talking founder of the bar." The girl was crying not just because she got cut, but because Lil' called her "a cheerleader" - I'm not sure why this is upsetting as she is in fact a cheerleader. She seemed to be most troubled that her cheerleader-ness was all Lil' could see about her. And honestly, it seems like cheerleader is pretty good street cred for bar tossing as opposed to, oh say, a graduate thesis on Sartre.

Another girl wanted to "share her gift of song," which is admirable, I guess, but I'm not sure how prancing around at Coyote Ugly will allow her to do this. But hey, since it came true for Piper Perabo in the movie, I'm sure it will come true for her as well.

By far the most gut-wrenching (?) audition was by this 40 year old woman with 2 kids. She was on the tour bus crying all the time because she missed her family. I can just imagine the conversation by Dad in that household. "No baby, Mommy can't be here, she's got to pole dance on a bar for strangers." I guess I'm an old fashioned girl - give me the good ol' days when girls used to strip to pay for college.

All this to say, I am going to open a chain of Donald Judd/Phillip Glass inspired coffee shops where everything will be square and black and atonal music will play softly in the background.

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