Words of Wisdom

In life, we have to choose between the jeans and the cookie jar. Liz Hurley chose the jeans and I chose the cookie jar

~ Nigella Lawson....(on women's body image and her own voluptuous body)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Grammy, Queensryche and the rock opera that should have been

I managed to catch the Grammy 2010 re-run last Saturday.

2010 grammy logo picture

Honestly, the only time I was excited about the Grammy was when Michael Jackson was the King of Pop. My high regards for the Grammy went downhill the year they started nominating Britney Spears and Backstreet Boys several years ago.

Look, I love pop music but leave the glamourous artists to other award shows like MTV Awards or American Music Awards and such. I have always viewed the Grammy as something more serious with high prestige. I enjoy watching Britney and BSB. In fact I have a lot of BSB CDs in my collection and I went to see them TWICE. However, the Grammy is NOT the place I want to see them. The pop artists who deserve to be there to me shouldn't be the 'bubblegum pop' type but real talented credible ones who can invent something new like MJ or George Michael.

I'm pretty satisfied with the pop artists this year. Beyonce (oohh....I knew she was a star when I saw her perform on the Top of the Pop stage at the BBC back when she was about 17) and Lady Gaga (she took awhile to sink into me but now that Madonna isn't as exciting as she used to be....I'd say go Lady!).

Enough about that. There are only TWO things I want to say.

First, I don't think Taylor Swift would win the Album of the Year if it wasn't for that Kanye West incident. Like a local DJ here said a few years ago, ".....we all know how that particular nation has a thing for 'over-compensating'......". Even in the Country Album category (which she won), hers was the least country compared to the other nominees.

Second, yet more importantly, I couldn't help feeling sad when Green Day came up onstage to sing 21 Guns with the cast of the musical based on Green Day songs.


As soon as the performance was announced and the lead girl sang the first line, I said to my siblings, "Queensryche already did this 20 years ago....".

Yes, Queensryche were so ahead of their time when they made Operation Mindcrime and before that Rage For Order. Sadly, the music industry was probably not ready for that in a mainstream way. I feel sad that people who are more musically talented are not there on that stage for the work they deserve the accolades for. Don't get me wrong. I do like Green Day and I'm happy for them to have reached that plateau. However, it's hard for me not to feel sad that a band like Queensryche who have produced far superior work still find it hard to bring their vision to a full musical show (other than their own concerts). A real rock opera. I keep reading, "'s in talks...", for years already.

Green day grammy 2010

I'm happy for the success of the musical based on Green Day songs.......


I also know a group of talented men who deserved that musical show TWO decades ago........

queensryche 1988 operation mindcrime era

Queensryche were too ahead of their time.

Even sadder, Queensryche is not the band that come to most people's minds when they think 'Seattle' after the grunge era.

Sometimes, being ahead of your time doesn't work in your favour. I totally blame the big heads in the industry who dictated what we should listen to. It was cruel. All the metal musicians were treated like they didn't have any fans at all. It was the die-hards who loyally searched and connected with other fans to keep their favourite artists' careers alive. I remember feeling like a part of an underground movement just to get a Dokken CD. The ones I did find in the shop were on imports and ridiculously over-priced.

What's the closest that Queensryche ever got to the Grammy? A nomination for only ONE song I Don't Believe In Love from Operation Mindcrime. Then, the live performance for Silent Lucidity from Empire. Thank God that when every metal band (other than GnR had to resort to sappy big ballads just to get themselves heard on the radio, these men had come up with something a cut above the rest and no real music listener can label Silent Lucidity as a sappy ballad.

I'm grateful for the 'explosion' of the Internet culture. I think we are taking back our rights as music listeners to dictate back to the industry's big heads. It is just unfortunate that the bands I love missed that era by only a few years yet a world apart.

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