Editor’s Note: BLOGGER FAIL?

Sometimes it’s a hard thing for someone to admit that they’re a little burnt out. It’s not really socially acceptable or professionally acceptable, because the notion of realizing that someone is burnt out should come with an equal realization that a person has likely put themselves in the situations that they’re experiencing the burnout from.

See, all of a sudden I realized that I may be a little burnt out on the whole live music scene. Over the past year I’ve gone to see a bunch of shows that I never really ended up writing about, and as of late I’ve been a bit more critical in my approach to seeing shows and it’s taken a bit of the fun out of it for me. With the exception of seeing !!! (Chk Chk Chk), I’m not sure any concert has fully excited me lately. Outside Lands was pretty exciting, too, I guess. I just started to feel “over it.” I think I was just overexposing myself to it.

I went to see Built to Spill on Tuesday night at Slim’s, mostly on a whim when I knew a friend of mine had an extra. I had heard enough of their music (I thought) to know I would like to see what they do live, but after seeing a marginally interesting but mostly boring noise-rock opener — Quasi (with the drummer from Sleater-Kinney) — my patience for taking in live music for the uninitiated had mostly run out. I stayed for maybe half the set and just took off. Then last night, right before heading out to see The Bad Plus, I realized that I really did not need to go see The Bad Plus again after seeing them a few months ago right here in San Fran. I asked myself if I thought it would have the same feeling or even the emotional effect that I hoped to get out of a concert experience, and the answer became immediately clear to me — “No, it probably wouldn’t. Maybe it would, especially if they played “Tom Sawyer,” but it probably wouldn’t.” So I opted to skip the show. GG Justin’s brain.

I’m taking this as a sign for me to slow down a bit. Plus, I think it’s just a good excuse for me to get more involved with the actual publishing side of the house again instead of trying to live my life like a live music junkie. The problem with being a junkie is that you’ve always got to feed the monkey. I’ve hit my rock bottom. I need help, people! I want to want to love live music again, just like the 15 year old kid that used to catch rides with his older friends to Fireside Bowl to see bands like The Vandals and Earth Crisis. I want to stop being such a critic and I want to make this site all about having fun again. And so it goes on living and learning and cultural burnout and blah blah and blah…

Expect to see some great updates on the site over the next month or so as I let my attention shift back to being the man behind the scenes. I may not see you in the beer line as frequently, but you can always find me right here at Live Music Blog. Thanks for continuing to hang out with me.

Very sincerely,
Justin

  • Paris

    Dear Justin–

    In my day, I was probably not as vivacious, voracious, or multi-genred as you, but I stopped into live music clubs 3 or 4 nights a week for a while (when the Justice League on Divis in SF was hoppin’!). There were two reasons. One, I couldn’t always get a “fix” on what a band was trying to do until seeing them perform, watch them respond to a crowd and create an energy. Some bands I never would have properly appreciated really showed up in person, and some I was very excited about from recorded material I could never really care about again after seeing them live. So live music is educational.

    But two, of course, live music gets you “high”, whether it is your sole intoxicant of choice or whether you wish to combine them. When I was seeing so many shows, I slept a lot less, to no ill effect, as I was charged and ready to go every morning.

    Either of these two reasons is good enough to go to shows. But the loss of both would be a “show stopper”. Which is what happened to me. I found that I was surprised less and less regarding the educative aspect. And I also lost the high, started to get annoyed at the people, at the constant, everpresent chatter, at the security (never forget having my tobbacco taken away, I think it was at Trancefusion in NY), at the people who actually order drinks from waitresses from the packed center of the crowd during the second set of STS9. I mean, if you haven’t got your brain chemistry set by that point, you have a very serious problem and no attention span to speak of.

    See? I got jaded. Now I download, and wear my iPod around a lot. And I’m a very happy person. You will be too, whatever you decide the future holds.

    All my best,

    Paris

  • Paris

    Dear Justin–

    In my day, I was probably not as vivacious, voracious, or multi-genred as you, but I stopped into live music clubs 3 or 4 nights a week for a while (when the Justice League on Divis in SF was hoppin’!). There were two reasons. One, I couldn’t always get a “fix” on what a band was trying to do until seeing them perform, watch them respond to a crowd and create an energy. Some bands I never would have properly appreciated really showed up in person, and some I was very excited about from recorded material I could never really care about again after seeing them live. So live music is educational.

    But two, of course, live music gets you “high”, whether it is your sole intoxicant of choice or whether you wish to combine them. When I was seeing so many shows, I slept a lot less, to no ill effect, as I was charged and ready to go every morning.

    Either of these two reasons is good enough to go to shows. But the loss of both would be a “show stopper”. Which is what happened to me. I found that I was surprised less and less regarding the educative aspect. And I also lost the high, started to get annoyed at the people, at the constant, everpresent chatter, at the security (never forget having my tobbacco taken away, I think it was at Trancefusion in NY), at the people who actually order drinks from waitresses from the packed center of the crowd during the second set of STS9. I mean, if you haven’t got your brain chemistry set by that point, you have a very serious problem and no attention span to speak of.

    See? I got jaded. Now I download, and wear my iPod around a lot. And I’m a very happy person. You will be too, whatever you decide the future holds.

    All my best,

    Paris

  • http://www.ConcertPosterArt.com Jacob Grossi

    I totally feel ya on the getting burnt out thing…I was feeing the same way a couple years ago. I own a record store, document/buy/ sell/trade 100’s of concert posters a year…and frankly the jamband “scene” can get to be a burn.
    Now that my kid is old enough to stay with the grandparents, I’ve had a break and I’m really looking forward to getting to more shows, but I think I’ll be much more selective and am really looking forward to trying to see more of my “heroes” and “local greats” rather than every jamband that comes around.

    Jacob
    http://www.ConcertPosterArt.com
    “Archival and Investment Quality Concert Posters and Memorabilia”

  • http://www.ConcertPosterArt.com Jacob Grossi

    I totally feel ya on the getting burnt out thing…I was feeing the same way a couple years ago. I own a record store, document/buy/ sell/trade 100’s of concert posters a year…and frankly the jamband “scene” can get to be a burn.
    Now that my kid is old enough to stay with the grandparents, I’ve had a break and I’m really looking forward to getting to more shows, but I think I’ll be much more selective and am really looking forward to trying to see more of my “heroes” and “local greats” rather than every jamband that comes around.

    Jacob
    http://www.ConcertPosterArt.com
    “Archival and Investment Quality Concert Posters and Memorabilia”

  • http://www.burningoak.com Kane Jamison

    Hmm… Sounds like you’ll be good and energized for the Phish 2009 Summer Tour. Good call.

  • http://www.burningoak.com Kane Jamison

    Hmm… Sounds like you’ll be good and energized for the Phish 2009 Summer Tour. Good call.

  • Jimmy Coulas

    Justin,

    I feel burned out with live music as well. I found myself going to too many shows, and it got to the point to where do I really need to see The Black Keys for the 3rd time in 6 months. It wasn’t fun like it used to be. There isn’t anything out there that excites me. I was going to shows just because a band was coming to town. If I am going to a show it has to be a must see band. I will still go to shows, but I would consider myself on a little bit of a live music hiatus

    Best Regards,

    Jimmy

  • Jimmy Coulas

    Justin,

    I feel burned out with live music as well. I found myself going to too many shows, and it got to the point to where do I really need to see The Black Keys for the 3rd time in 6 months. It wasn’t fun like it used to be. There isn’t anything out there that excites me. I was going to shows just because a band was coming to town. If I am going to a show it has to be a must see band. I will still go to shows, but I would consider myself on a little bit of a live music hiatus

    Best Regards,

    Jimmy

  • http://www.simplehelp.net Ross

    It sounds to me like you need a good musical kick in the bum-bum. Which is why I implore you to purchase a ticket for one of the Gov’t Mule shows in SF this Nov. If you walk out of the Filmore that night without a shit-eating grin on your face I will be nothing short of amazed.

    But I can relate. I just saw the Black Crowes for the umpteenth time, and even though it had been 2+ years since I’ve seen them, and I was literally 6 feet away from Luther, I walked out of the venue going “yep.. another BC show..” If it wasn’t for Luther (my first show seeing him as a band member) I might very well have left half way through. That and I was a bit determined to get my $80+ worth of the show (I didn’t).

  • http://www.simplehelp.net Ross

    It sounds to me like you need a good musical kick in the bum-bum. Which is why I implore you to purchase a ticket for one of the Gov’t Mule shows in SF this Nov. If you walk out of the Filmore that night without a shit-eating grin on your face I will be nothing short of amazed.

    But I can relate. I just saw the Black Crowes for the umpteenth time, and even though it had been 2+ years since I’ve seen them, and I was literally 6 feet away from Luther, I walked out of the venue going “yep.. another BC show..” If it wasn’t for Luther (my first show seeing him as a band member) I might very well have left half way through. That and I was a bit determined to get my $80+ worth of the show (I didn’t).

  • Ed

    Anyway, they played Tom Sawyer on Tuesday night, so probably didn’t on Wednesday…

  • Ed

    Anyway, they played Tom Sawyer on Tuesday night, so probably didn’t on Wednesday…

  • Kim

    Hey Justin, I’m Kane’s dad. As a 50yr old guy, who long ago gave up the live music scene? I’ve now got an “almost” empty nest. Youngest graduates this year!!!
    I actually have TIME now to go to some shows. Still, a 9pm start on a Wed. night is an issue….I do still have to work. So it better be someone I want to see, and it better not cost $100 for the ticket. I’ve pretty much given up on arena rock.
    But there are SO many good local bands with original music that I’m finding. It inspires my faith in the youth of this world. I’ll put out the effort if I think it will support the ones I like, and if I think I’ll be able to not fall asleep before they hit the stage.
    We go thru cycles in life. I’m tired of working, but loving the shows I’m seeing these days. :O)
    Kane’s turned me onto some great bands these last few years. I’m loving it.
    Take care.
    Kim

  • Kim

    Hey Justin, I’m Kane’s dad. As a 50yr old guy, who long ago gave up the live music scene? I’ve now got an “almost” empty nest. Youngest graduates this year!!!
    I actually have TIME now to go to some shows. Still, a 9pm start on a Wed. night is an issue….I do still have to work. So it better be someone I want to see, and it better not cost $100 for the ticket. I’ve pretty much given up on arena rock.
    But there are SO many good local bands with original music that I’m finding. It inspires my faith in the youth of this world. I’ll put out the effort if I think it will support the ones I like, and if I think I’ll be able to not fall asleep before they hit the stage.
    We go thru cycles in life. I’m tired of working, but loving the shows I’m seeing these days. :O)
    Kane’s turned me onto some great bands these last few years. I’m loving it.
    Take care.
    Kim

  • http://partyinpeeps.blogspot.com Partyin’ Peeps

    This might be what you need:

    My Morning Jacket – 9/19/08 – Greek Theatre, Berkeley, CA

  • http://partyinpeeps.blogspot.com Partyin’ Peeps

    This might be what you need:

    My Morning Jacket – 9/19/08 – Greek Theatre, Berkeley, CA

  • http://www.livemusicblog.com Justin

    I think Paris kinda summed up how it just started to feel like some of the concerts were me going through the motions. I guess it seems that everyone can relate to this, and it’s a shame that I’m going through it right now. Maybe this move out to the Bay has changed my priorities a bit. Who knows.

    I should note that I still plan on spending time on the site but it is simply too difficult to me to give my career and the site and my social life and concerts all a fair shake of my mental stamina. Where I spend more time on concerts, my job performance probably starts to suffer a bit. Okay maybe a lot.

    @Peeps: you know, I’m actually torn on this one…do I go and possibly overwrite the EPIC performance I saw from the second row at SXSW? I think not.

    @Kim: thanks so much for the comment and for stopping by. Kane’s a good lad; you’ve taught him well and I’m glad to see that you’re the kinda guy that loves learning from the youth. Some say that we’re the future, but I’ve yet to see that come to fruition.

    Thanks for the comments from everyone else, too. It’s funny to post about being burnt on live music when you’re running a site with a lot of other enthusiastic folks ready and eager to see live music like crazy. I can’t be setting a good example as editor. ;)

  • http://www.livemusicblog.com Justin

    I think Paris kinda summed up how it just started to feel like some of the concerts were me going through the motions. I guess it seems that everyone can relate to this, and it’s a shame that I’m going through it right now. Maybe this move out to the Bay has changed my priorities a bit. Who knows.

    I should note that I still plan on spending time on the site but it is simply too difficult to me to give my career and the site and my social life and concerts all a fair shake of my mental stamina. Where I spend more time on concerts, my job performance probably starts to suffer a bit. Okay maybe a lot.

    @Peeps: you know, I’m actually torn on this one…do I go and possibly overwrite the EPIC performance I saw from the second row at SXSW? I think not.

    @Kim: thanks so much for the comment and for stopping by. Kane’s a good lad; you’ve taught him well and I’m glad to see that you’re the kinda guy that loves learning from the youth. Some say that we’re the future, but I’ve yet to see that come to fruition.

    Thanks for the comments from everyone else, too. It’s funny to post about being burnt on live music when you’re running a site with a lot of other enthusiastic folks ready and eager to see live music like crazy. I can’t be setting a good example as editor. ;)

  • http://www.burningoak.com Kane

    Well, I suppose if I can make fun of you for being old, you can refer to me as “lad” just this once…

  • http://www.burningoak.com Kane

    Well, I suppose if I can make fun of you for being old, you can refer to me as “lad” just this once…