Being a popular musical act is tough. They not only have to manage the expectations of their fans, who want them to keep producing great material, they have to manage the expectations of their labels, who want them to keep producing great material. Over time, many artists suffer from changing winds in musical taste, and the type of music that made them popular in one decade doesn't get much traction in another, leading many fans to ask of new songs, "What is this crap?" Or else the artist or band tries to experiment, leading many fans to ask of new songs, "What is this crap?"
What I'm basically saying is that fans tend to have a strong preference for the music that made them initially like the artist; it's a kind of nostalgia effect, I suppose. So some artists who've been around for a long time, and are no longer bound to recording contracts, have decided to base their current success on exactly what their fans are expecting: the golden oldies that made them popular. They continue touring but stop recording for the most part, or else have very long gaps of time between albums which suggest recording isn't a priority for them. Here are a few examples that've done just that:
The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones are among the better bands on this list, since they've actually had a new studio album in the last 10 years, that being A Bigger Bang (2005). They've had several compilation and live albums since then, some with a few new songs, but that's about it. Since 1989, the Stones have definitely slowed down their release schedule, with three studio albums during that time period. The Stones have given no indication that they're done recording, so hopefully we'll see a new album soon.
Tomorrow marks the beginning of another NCAA Basketball Tournament, and we are definitely amped up for the coming games. The beginning of the tournament also got us thinking about some of the most popular basketball-related themes. Where basketball is concerned, there really are only a few big ones, but they're all memorable and instantly recognizable.
"I Believe I Can Fly"
There are a lot of songs that are created and then later appropriated for movies. "I Believe I Can Fly" by R. Kelly was not one of those songs. Written for the 1996 live action/Looney Tunes mash-up "Space Jam," the song help propel the movie into the box-office stratosphere. It also earned a life of its own outside the movie, and in addition won two Grammy Awards for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance and Best Rhythm & Blues Song.
Even if you didn't watch the awards ceremony this past Sunday, you may have heard about Lady Gaga's performance of a medley of songs from "The Sound of Music," including "The Hills Are Alive," "My Favorite Things," "Edelweiss," and "Climb Ev'ry Mountain." If you haven't, the video is below. The performance particularly moved Julie Andrews, who played the role of Maria in the 1965 film.
It's a simple fact of life. Someday one of either two things will happen to your favorite artists: 1) They will kick the bucket or 2) They will decide that enough is enough and retire from the music business. It happens to every musician, but for some of them that time is coming sooner rather than later. So here are four artists you may want to think about seeing before it's too late, in no particular order.
Normally when someone retires it's because they're entering the final chapter of their life, and they want to live their final years without the stress of work, maybe do some traveling, and spend time with family. That does not appear to be the motivation for Motley Crue's retirement at the end of this year. After all, none of them are particularly old. Mick Mars is the oldest member of the band at 65, but the other three members are in their 50s.
Have you ever become interested in a seemingly obscure artist, only to look them up and realize they used to be the lead singer or lead guitarist in a famous band? If this has happened to you, don't think you're alone; it's happened to us, too. So today's post is dedicated to that phenomenon. Some artists have switched bands while others have formed solo careers. There are so many examples we could give you, but here are six.
Grohl is now known for being the front man of Foo Fighters, but from 1990 to 1994 he was the drummer for Nirvana. Following Kurt Cobain's death, he formed Foo Fighters. He is also part of Them Crooked Vultures with Josh Homme of Queens of the Stone Age (see below) and John Paul Jones, formerly of Led Zeppelin.
Josh Homme is the founder of Queens of the Stone Age, but he was once a member of stoner rock band Kyuss. He also has a shared history with Grohl, but not in Nirvana or Foo Fighters. Instead, he is a member of supergroup Them Crooked Vultures, which formed in 2009 and released an album, but has since been on hiatus.
These days he's known as a successful solo artist, but Gabriel earned his chops in the band Genesis, of which he was a member until 1975. Since leaving Genesis, Gabriel has had a very successful career, with a number of popular solo albums, particularly in the mid-1980s to early 1990s.
Chester Bennington isn't so much a case of an artist leaving one band for another, or leaving a band for a solo career, but one of joining yet another band. Bennington is the lead vocalist for Linkin Park, and has been a member of that band since 1999. In 2013, he also joined Stone Temple Pilots, replacing long-time lead vocalist Scott Weiland.
Another member of Genesis, Phil Collins is still technically in the band but announced his retirement from music in 2011 after years of dealing with pain stemming from issues with his vertebrae. Collins began a solo career in the early 1980s parallel to his work with Genesis. In 1996, Collins left the band to focus on his solo work, but briefly rejoined with bandmates Tony Banks and Mike Rutherford for a reunion tour in 2007.
Black Eyed Peas member Fergie has seen two transitions during her career. She was originally a member of teen pop group Wild Orchard but left in 2001. The next year she joined the Black Eyed Peas at the invitation of will.i.am. In 2006, she released her first solo album, Dutchess. That is her only solo album to date, though she has said she's working on a new one.