Sunday, May 31, 2009

San Diego Has A Music Scene?

I was just going to kinda let the whole Rolling Stone article about San Diego pass by without a mention, however a few things happened and I guess I would tie them all together. I'll start off by saying if you haven't heard about the article, you can find a scan of it on the CityBeat blog here, along with Seth Combs' take on the article.

I heard about the article being written via a publicist who asked me if I knew bands in San Diego "that sound like Wavves and Crocodiles". I told her some bands and she responded by saying she forwarded my list to her friend at Rolling Stone who was writing an article about San Diego. To be honest, I kinda cringed. To put our entire music scene in this little pigeonhole seemed pretty lame to me. This entire site exists because of the vibrant music scene that exists in San Diego and one little article could never cover what is going on in this town.

That said, I decided to mention it because while in San Francisco I was being entertained by @PitchforkMedia and their coverage of Wavves at the Primavera Festival in Spain and because the Street Scene lineup was announced today, including performances by Crocodiles and Wavves and Grand Ole Party. If you haven't been paying attention, Wavves is the project of Nathan Williams that blew up in the blogosphere thanks to an 8.1 rating on the coveted/despised Pitchfork site. Subsequently Wavves have been all over the place, including a full US tour, SXSW, and were starting a behemoth tour of Europe when there was a total breakdown.

Here's the Twitter feed from @PitchforkMedia at the Primavera Festival:

5:42 PM May 28th: Wavves' Nathan giving ultra pissy performance, drummer Ryan pours a beer on his head. And someone throws a shoe. Well deserved.

5:57 PM May 28th: Holy shit, Wavves! Ryan runs off stage, throws drumstick at Nathan who shouts, "No! Come back here MF we're not done yet!" He doesn't.

6:00 PM May 28th: Crew comes up and breaks down drumset. Nathan tells them to stop, they don't. He tries to continue on... They cut his mic. Disaster city.

6:01 PM May 28th: Bottles thrown. Verdict: Spain hates Wavves. Spectacular.

The thing about the whole fiasco is that Pitchfork curated the stage, so they kinda have to do damage control. I don't personally know Nathan and I've not seen Wavves perform live, so I can't speak to his behavior, but it just sounds like he was launched into a world that he wasn't mature enough or mentally prepared to handle. The internet will shoot you down just as quickly as it can launch you into (relative) stardom.

Anyway, if you wanna follow along, here's the complete story of the breakdown, the subsequent cancellation of their next show, some coverage and comments on Stereogum, and a cached apology from Nathan's blog which has been removed. I hope that if Nathan is having drug/alcohol issues that he deals with them and I hope that his story isn't over because he does some interesting music, but I'm here to say that the San Diego music scene is alive and kicking with or without Wavves, and we don't need Pitchfork, Fader, Spin, or Rolling Stone telling us so.


catdirt said...

what publicist? email it to me.

Lazy John said...

RS loves to oversimplify. I'm surprised they mentioned our fair city at all - especially considering they've sunk to having Taylor Swift and Li'l Wayne on their cover this year. They're not even a rock and roll magazine anymore.

Seth said...

Great post Rosey and thanks for the shout out.