Without wishing to appear like a teenage girl, Morrissey’s music is everything to me. Even the less than stellar songs he’s released, by his own ridiculously high standards at least, have brought me great joy and enhanced my life immeasurably. Even the lesser regarded songs in his canon are worth more to me than the output of every other artist combined. Why? Because there’s always a killer line that you wouldn’t get from anyone else, but more than anything because of the fantastic voice, which is criminally under-rated.
Paul Blake, 2007
Thursday, July 23, 2009
A tearful farewell to Ambitious Outsiders…
I give in.
After more than two years of futile struggle, it has become painfully apparent that by choosing the name Ambitious Outsiders, I made everything a hundred times more difficult than it otherwise might have been, both in terms of getting opportunities to play live and then getting people along to our concerts.
Hardly anyone, outside of Morrissey’s most fervent admirers, connected the name Ambitious Outsiders with Morrissey, so we’ve been pretty much treated as though we were one of the hundreds of unsigned and unknown bands that don’t attract much attention outside of their friends and families. Rather than the world’s only tribute to the present-day Morrissey, which theoretically, should attract the attention of anyone who has ever enjoyed a Smiths or Morrissey record/CD.
The name Ambitious Outsiders on a poster, or in gig listings, left most people with no idea who we were or what we did, which made it much more difficult to entice people out to see us. When we’re relying on door takings to pay our expenses, this has meant we’ve often been left out of pocket, and it’s ended up costing us money to play after fuel, accommodation, etc., has been paid for.
Certainly, I never started this band to get rich, I just wanted to go out and sing these fantastic songs to other people who might like them too. That struck me as something I might enjoy doing. It then fell to me to find like-minded musicians. Founder members Adam, guitar, and Nigel, keyboards, have loved The Smiths/Morrissey for many years, and have never given anything less than 100% to the band, and always understood that it was gonna take time to establish ourselves, and gain a solid reputation, and have been happy to invest their time, energy, and a little money, simply because, like me, they enjoy playing the songs to people. I wasn’t quite so fortunate when it came to others who’ve passed through the band, but the least said about them the better.
Many of the musicians that play in tribute or cover bands are, by and large, only doing it for the money, and would play anything as long as the price was right. I know this to be true because each time I’ve had to advertise for new band members, most of the people who answer my ads are only interested in how much they’ll be paid per gig, and how often we’ll be playing (which means how often they’ll be getting paid).
So, Plan A didn’t work, such as it was; on to Plan B! Which is, to rename the band and then find some true musicians who can play the songs, want to be in the band because they think it might be fun, and are content with an equal share of whatever money comes along, however much that may be. That shouldn’t be too difficult, should it?
Oh yeah, the new name for the band is…. VIVA MORRISSEY, which was the least cringeworthy name of those we considered that contained Morrissey’s name.
Oh well, we’ll all soon be dead, so what does it matter.