Can Someone Explain Why Anyone Would Want to See a "Tribute Band"?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by houston, Apr 17, 2012.

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  1. houston

    houston Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Dallas, Texas, USA
    Jack's Throwback Show (Radio station Jack FM) has announced a local concert for June 30, lots of tribute bands, from Def Leppard, to AC/DC, to Guns n Roses....lots of promotional hype; I don't get why anyone would care; most of the acts have either toured recently, or still tour.....I don't even like partial "original" lineups (although I'm OK seeing them, there are many), but a Tribute band? I could see a couple of exceptions like, say, ABBA or Queen, where the original groups are long gone, toured infrequently, and were rarely seen in America; but seeing a Tribute band, IMO, is like copping a feel of a mannequin in a department store, then telling your buddies you went to "second base" with a girl :winkgrin:
  2. Sid Hartha

    Sid Hartha Well-Known Member

    The Midwest
    I guess to see a good live band play music you like, as simple as that.

    At this point, I would probably rather see a GnR tribute band over the "real" thing.
  3. apple-richard

    apple-richard Overnight Sensation

    I've seen various Beatles tribute bands over the years starting with the Broadway Play Beatlemania. Lots of fun actually.

    AC/DC trbute band in a nightclub that was free i.e. no cover charge. They serve they're purpose IMO.
  4. houston

    houston Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Dallas, Texas, USA
    agree on G N R....but is it that simple? there's lots of good bands, why hear a bogus band playing music you like that someone else made, when you can hear that someone else do it? isn't it more fantasy than good musical performance?
  5. vinylbuff

    vinylbuff Forum Resident

    North Port Florida
    I have never gone to see a tribute band, but I agree with Sid. It's to see a good band playing your favorite music live. I've noticed that it is very popular here in SW Fl. and radio stations always seem to advertise them pretty heavy.
  6. dkmonroe

    dkmonroe A completely self-taught idiot

    Obviously the appeal is to see a facsimile of a band from the past performing at their peak, being all skinny and having full heads of hair and youthful chops and energy. I have no interest in them - it seems even several steps below the kinds of touring cover bands I used to see when I was a teenager - but heck, it's just entertainment.

    I saw a Doors tribute band back in the mid-80's and it was OK, but the guy playing Morrison was entirely unconvincing.

    I saw a local ad a few years ago from someone trying to assemble a Black Sabbath tribute band, and they required period equipment, clothing and wigs. Sounded like fun, but I couldn't imagine actually doing it. Seems a bit silly to be putting on a wig to play in a band, although I'm sure it's more common than I want to know. :laugh:
  7. Scott57

    Scott57 Member

    Got something against mannequin?
  8. Ocean56

    Ocean56 Forum Resident

    Waterford, MI USA
  9. Exactly - the appeal is not that hard to understand. Some people just don't want to hear new bands playing originals, or to watch the AARP-aged original bands grinding through a set in a state fair or overpriced stadium setting.

    I would never pay to go see one of those "exact recreation"-type tribute acts unless they were called The Musical Box, but I can see the appeal. I don't mind seeing the types who play in bars and just play the repertoire and don't take it all too seriously, though. One of the best tribute acts I saw was for The Tragically Hip about 17 years ago - by just getting up on stage and jamming out in their street clothes, the band totally nailed the right vibe.
  10. ampmods

    ampmods Forum Resident

    Boston, MA, USA
    I can understand the appeal. Often the bands play better set lists than the real band. It often costs like $10 or less in cover charge (compared to $50 and up... and up... for the real thing). It's a really low risk good time if you love a certain band... or you loved what they were.

    Also many bands never go to certain markets and some bands don't tour at all (anymore). So sometimes it's the closest some folks will get to experiencing that music live.

    I've played a few tribute nights locally myself. It's not the same as a tribute band because it's usually a one-off sort of thing. But everybody has a great time and musically it can be really cool. Two shows in particular were outstanding. There was a Kinks night at a club where I think 20 or so acts performed 2 songs each from the Kinks. That was a blast. And I played an ELO set at another time augmented by a string quartet which was just mind-blowing. Good times!

    The best act I saw was a Kiss tribute years and years ago before the real Kiss put the make-up back on. They were pretty amazing and the set list was nothing later than Kiss Alive II.
  11. Casemeister

    Casemeister Well-Known Member

    I've played in a number of tribute bands.

    Van Halen x2 (one Roth era, one Hagar era, essentially the same lineup but different singers)
    Def Leppard (I was Steve Clark)
    Skid Row (as a favour to someone, I was Snake Sabo for a while)

    The Who (my vanity project)

    Why? It's a bit of fun, and some of the gigs can pay well. The Who one I do simply because I love The Who so much and want to share their music with people so that it may touch their lives the way it has touched mine.

    Before I was in the VH tributes, I used to see them all the time. One of them even played at my 21st birthday party. Why was I so into them? I love Van Halen! To see and hear the songs I love very competently performed is a blast. Meeting fellow fans of the "real" band at the gigs is fun too. Also, from seeing and playing with these bands, I've met a lot of musicians who have worked with me in various other projects. My original band has five members, three of whom have done tribute bands (including me). If not for the tributes, we wouldn't have formed this great original project.

    People who are passionately against tribute bands are weird. It's just a bit of fun. I had one guy really get on my case about it at a party one night. I said, "Dude, at the end of the day, there are posters all over town advertising my band. I'm headlining an awesome venue later this month. If you don't like it, don't come. I'll count the money and have a blast."

    Oh, and as an aside, I was approached by someone from a major (very major) record label at a tribute show I did a while ago. Based on the strength of my performance, he wanted to hear some originals, which I'm soon submitting to him...
  12. rene smalldridge

    rene smalldridge Senior Member

    Of course...........2nd base is about all the further you're gonna get with a mannequin.
    Kinda like a tribute band , I suppose.
  13. Joel1963

    Joel1963 Forum Resident

    Beatle tribute bands are lots of fun. I've seen five of them already, in most cases for free. One that wasn't, Rain in NYC, was very good and their Paul McCartney, at least from a distance and from certain angles, looked a heck of a lot like the real thing circa 1966. Greatly helps the illusion. The Ringos usually look too goofy, but are still fun.
  14. PaulKTF

    PaulKTF Forum Resident

    They're just plain fun! Especially if the "real" band has broken up or isn't active anymore.
  15. Col Kepper

    Col Kepper Well-Known Member

    Texas, Where else?
    The Orchestra, albeit members of the Electric Light Orchestra and it's follow up ELO Part 2, was in part a Tribute band as well as an extension of the Jeff Lynne machine. Sadly, Jeff Lynne does not care to tour but the guys did. Jeff Lynne sued over the name, sued over the promotion and unsuccessfully sued to keep them from performing ELO songs (only Bev Bevan, ELO co-founder and ELO Part 2 founder, can never perform an ELO song again)

    I've seen this band twice. And both times blew away the crowd.
    Sadly, bassist and ELO vocalist Kelly Groucutt passed away in 2009, but the Orchestra plays on.
    Check out their albums of original material.
    Especially, No Rewind.
  16. acdc7369

    acdc7369 Forum Resident

    Pittsburgh, PA
    Yeah, I really don't get it either. I'd rather watch live videos of the band in their prime than spend money/time to go see what will more than likely be a mediocre (at best) recreation of the band in question. I'm speaking from the viewpoint of a musician though. The average person doens't really recognize the difference between a mediocre/half-assed cover, and a well-done cover.
  17. NegaSonic

    NegaSonic Forum Resident

    In the future there will nothing but tribute bands...
  18. Joel1963

    Joel1963 Forum Resident

    And if that great Beach Boys tribute band the Fendertones was playing The Monkey's Uncle (and other songs) anywhere in my vicinity, I'd bust down doors to see them,
  19. Joel1963

    Joel1963 Forum Resident

    Kiss is halfway there...
  20. BradOlson

    BradOlson Country/Christian Music Maven

    Some tribute bands are better than others though. Nowadays, one will have to see a Bee Gees tribute band just to hear the music being performed for example.
  21. PaulKTF

    PaulKTF Forum Resident

    Very true! It's the luck of the draw.
  22. This must be a mistake - there's no way anyone can be prevented from performing certain songs if they pay the royalties. As far as I'm aware Bevan could only be prevented from trading on the ELO name.

    Actually, this raises a side issue: do tribute bands need any sort of official sanction in order to bill themselves as "A Tribute To (X)"? I wouldn't think so, but I suppose it could be seen as trading on someone else's trademark.
  23. music4life

    music4life Well-Known Member

    South Elgin, IL
    Iink what it comes down to is $$$. Some people who would love to see the current band tour simply can not afford it. Ive never been a big fan of them, although I have seen a couple. One was back in the early eighties called "Moonlight Drive" a Doors tribute. They mustve had eight people up on the stage and still didnt sound anywhere close to Morrison and co. The other was a local Cheap Trick cover band called "Dream Police" and they sounded great.
  24. floweringtoilet

    floweringtoilet Forum Resident

    I don't know, for fun maybe?

    Back in the 90s there was a Led Zep tribute band that regularly played a bar in my neighborhood in Greenwich Village. I went with a few friends and we had a blast. The band sounded really good, but none of the members seemed to have any rock star charisma. They sure could play though. This summer our town hired a Beach Boys tribute band to play our town beach for the last day of the season. The kids ran around and danced, we talked to some of our neighbors. Everybody had a nice time.

    Were either of these shows the highlight of my life? No. Did I feel like I was witnessing the creation of great art? No. Did I have fun? Yes. Do I think that's okay? Yes.
  25. Efus

    Efus Forum Resident

    Jackson, NJ, USA
    And then there are guys in bands that can play, who love the bands they're covering, and people that enjoy hearing those tunes done live, not to mention rarities that the original band would never play in a live setting. I don't see much wrong with this.

    Wicked World/Warning

    She's Gone

    After Forever
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