College Media Network

The Observer

The Student Newspaper of Case Western Reserve University
  • Home
  • News
    • Sports
      • Opinion
        • Focus
          • About Us
            • Info
            • Staff
          • Archives
          • Options
            • Login
            • Register
            • Write to the Editor
            • Syndication
            • Search
          • Advertising

          Going back to Those Gold Soundz: I was a six-year-old Phish phan

          Adam Spektor

          Issue date: 8/27/10 Section: Focus
          • Print
          • Email
          • 2 of 2
          One way in which this frame of thought is beginning to fade is through the acclaim and success of Lady Gaga. Gaga's spectacle has her standard pop fare transcend into something that everyone seems to enjoy. Top 40 radio listeners and Pitchfork readers alike can agree that there's something great in Gaga. Perhaps this will open the floodgates for people to look back at Gaga's pop predecessors and view it through a more academic lens. But this may just be wishful thinking on my part.

          It was through personal experience that I was able to appreciate the fluffy pop hits of yesteryear. A close friend of mine through whom I discovered bands like Big Star, The Replacements, and XTC, taught me a valuable lesson about the connection between nostalgia and quality when he suddenly, and almost alarmingly began to exclusively listen to the hits of his middle school heyday. As weird as it was to switch from The Byrds to Hanson, his love for both artists became just as genuine. To his ears, Hanson grew beyond novelty and nostalgia, and he started to appreciate Hanson as a quality musical group right alongside more respected artists like Bob Dylan and Talking Heads, a point of view that I can't objectively argue.

          This designation was inspiring for me, and I began to look back not only at the late-90's pop hits that I used to scoff at, but also the prog-rock behemoths I turned away from in the last few years. Not needing to justify the often ridiculous music I used to enjoy was an enlightening idea, and it opened doors to discover other old prog-rock groups that I might not have otherwise sought out. The culmination of this enlightenment happened just weeks ago, in a small video game store in Chicago, when my aforementioned friend, everyone else in the store, and former rock purist I spontaneously sang along, loud and proud, to The Backstreet Boys' "Show Me the Meaning of Being Lonely." It was almost cathartic.

          So if you used to love Limp Bizkit, 98 Degrees, or Christina Aguilera, there's a chance that you probably still do. What you might not realize is that you probably love it with as much genuine conviction as you do whatever you listen to now. Embrace it, because yesterday's nostalgia can still be today's favorite song. And at the end of the day, what's really more embarrassing: Hanson or Emerson, Lake, and Palmer?
          2 of 2

          Article Tools

          Viewing Comments 1 - 3 of 3

            Don Sackett

            posted 8/27/10 @ 11:56 AM EST

            Hanson can NOT even compare to the intricate, mind bending, ground breaking conceptualization that was ELP!! I'm sorry but I disagree that songs you may have liked were in anyway equal in quality to bands such as Bob Dylan, ELP, The Grateful Dead, or Phish just to name four. (Continued…)

            Details   Reply to this comment

            Mike B

            posted 8/27/10 @ 12:58 PM EST

            "When I was six, a relatively typical interest in music became an all-consuming obsession when I heard Phish for the first time. Against all odds, those four perpetually stoned, Vermont-born-and-raised Deadheads"

            FYI: None of the members of Phish were born (or raised) in Vermont. (Continued…)

            Details   Reply to this comment

            Adam Spektor

            posted 8/28/10 @ 2:50 AM EST

            @Don Your definition of "true music" is just different from my definition of "true music."

            @Mike B Thank you for the correction! Note to self: Thoroughly research details like this before articles go to print, or at least word things more accurately!

            Details   Reply to this comment

            Post a Comment

            In This Issue


            • Major work on LGBT Center completed
            • Meet your USG Executive Board
            • More to coffee than its morning punch
            • New international student orientation session debuts
            • Optimizing your credit cards
            • University names new controller
            • USG Briefs: Filer to be taken offline


            • A conversation with Otto Penicka, voice of Spartan athletics
            • Another year, another slap in the face
            • Conference Previews
            • Men's XC team to avenge snub
            • Spartan Spotlight: Cindy Spahn
            • Spartan women have their eye on return trip to Nationals
            • Women's Soccer looks to build on surprising season


            • Flouting the system, 101
            • Letter to the Editor: Commutes Students Association offers home to all CWRU students
            • Sex and Dating
            • Spreading the wealth
            • Student body, SEC ready to move on


            • Going back to Those Gold Soundz: I was a six-year-old Phish phan
            • Kate Voegele, Meagan McCormick charm crowd at Welcome Back Concert
            • One student's story: wielding Magic in foreign countries.
            • Scott Pilgrim epitomizes style over substance in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
            • SEC positively affecting campus
            • The Buzz
            • Welcome Back Comedy Night a real laugh
            • Welcome Days
            National College Advertising and Marketing | Privacy Policy (9/9/09) | Terms of Use (9/9/09)
            Content Submission Agreement (8/23/07) | Copyright Compliance Policy (4/27/09) | RSS Terms of Use