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 Post subject: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 4:44 pm 
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I was about to post this in response to where the conversation about the Bath gig was going, but think it might be better over here. Just thinking that the debate about the current (now finished) line-up with Charlotte and Rej has gone on since they joined KT and various views have been taken, comparisons made etc, but now that that period of KT's touring has been declared officially over by the lady herself, what did you make of it? This isn't necessarily asking again for comparisons between the Sam/Arnie era and the current band, although I'd expect people would want to share thoughts about that of course (no reason not to), but it's more a sense of 'how do you think they did?'.

After reading some comments in the Bath thread with comparisons though, my thoughts turned to the initial unease about Sam and Arnie going out and Charlotte and Rej coming in, what that unease meant and whether that changed over time.

I think the whole debate about members of the band and where the sound has gone - Sam vs Charlotte, Rej vs Arnie - is bound to get a bit more focus in the mind now that KT's declared the end of the Mk. II band era, but for me it's always been at least partly a question of why you like someone when you see change and have to decide how you feel about it. I wasn't around for the early days (well, listened to the music back then but wasn't a gig-goer), but I can completely understand why people would be uncomfortable with the way the live band changed when familiar with Sam and Arnie. And I do still think of them primarily as KT's band really, if you just took her out of the context of trying to develop musically or being in any album 'era' and just gave her time to put a gig band together for a familiar show, all other factors being even, I'd be confident she'd go with her old band who she shares all those years with and the successful breakthrough of her career in the first place. But she wanted to shake things up for Tiger Suit and the band shake-up is just an extension of that as I see it. What I'd be interested to know though, is how much of the initial apprehension about the Charlotte/Rej era was based on expectation of the actual live gigs, and how much of it was just down to not being totally comfortable with the new direction of Tiger Suit as opposed to more 'safe' material.

You see for me, different music does different jobs. And it's not until that music begins to change, that you really know how you feel about it. People have praised the likes of Radiohead and plenty of others for constantly changing direction, developing and seeking to evolve. Conversely, you have other bands like Status Quo and Oasis being slated for churning out the same type of music (to the ears of many casual listeners anyway). But sometimes, more of the same is what people want. For me, I really liked that KT was trying to be a bit more creative, the same way I love the way Charlotte Hatherley as a solo artist is always striving to do something she hasn't done before, or David Bowie's music kept changing. Yet if I listen to AC/DC, the last thing I want is for them to be trying something clever - I do want more of the same and want to know exactly what I'm getting. As I said, different music does different jobs. My point with all of this is, I think some people want more of the same with KT and others were more prepared to accept a change in musical direction. I still think the record label were frightened enough by the change to back away from giving Tiger Suit the success it could have had - to say the least, KT talking about this radical change in her sound and then giving opening single performances of (Still A) Weirdo made her look like she was contradicting herself or just had no clue what a change in direction actuall meant. I think that was about the most 'safe' pick on the album for 'here's what people would expect from KT Tunstall' that they could have chosen. Personally I think Fade Like A Shadow would have been a great introductory single and then Come On Get In, Push That Knot Away or Uummannaq Song would have made a much bolder statement. I think the choice of UK singles fudged a more positive public understanding of what she was trying to do with that album, which may even have something to do with why she feels it's necessary to try out a dance side-project now without that being all in her own name (I'm speculating there).

I still certainly think that at the end of this, a lot of people will much prefer the Sam/Arnie era of the band. It is the era that defined her, after all. But I wonder how much in the years to come people will look back on the Charlotte/Rej era, perhaps after yet another grouping is in place, and think actually, they quite liked them or miss certain things about the way they performed the songs they did. I enjoyed them immensely, but then I'm out of touch with the old times. Just wondering what other people's views are on whether they liked the band shake-up in the first place, if not then looking back on it now, did you warm to them and what was at the heart of it, and just generally curious to hear your opinions now that we're at a point where they're no longer officially 'the band'!


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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 5:00 pm 
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Interesting thread my friend!!

I'm not gonna repeat myself all over, but musically I think either couldn't have done better, I've been as excited about the live performances now as I was back then. All of them are ridiculously high skilled, they're just different when it comes to style and ideas.

The main reason I had a bit of a hard time with it is simple, they were like a wee band family, and it felt like a divorce!!
It was all just personal and knowing how close they were on stage as well, it just seemed wrong to get 'strangers' into it. I think everybody loves the little inuendos on stage that bandmembers have together. They're the moments that make people smile, they're the moments that photographers want to capture. Music is much more than just being about technicalities, it's about evoking emotions and when the makers of the music are clearly as passionate about making it as we are listening to it, then that adds so much more for me at a gig.

Not to say that there's no 'chemistry' there with Charlotte/Rej, but you just can't compare it (yet) with a band that has been there from the very beginning, climbing to the top together!


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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 5:05 pm 
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I don't have anything against the 'new' band and I wholeheartedly agree things needed a shake up. I understand why she changed the lineup.

There's plenty of solo artists I like who have bands and I have absolutely no idea what they're called. Maybe it's because I go to more KT gigs than other artists I like. But i think it's maybe something to do with the members having a bigger role onstage.

To be completely shallow, maybe the reason I've never warmed to the new lineup is that I really fancied Sam and Arnie, and I am not attracted to Charlotte or Rej. Yeah. That's probably what it is.

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 5:36 pm 
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:smt005

And THAT is why all the boys are all pro-Charlotte!! :p



Btw, does it help then that Sam has got a gf now?
:lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 5:44 pm 
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Well then that explains why you don't miss the backup singers and I do. :smt043

Good idea to make a new thread Steve! I was starting to feel guilty about going off topic like I did but that path was opened before I joined in. :smt002

Would it make sense to move some of the Bath messages over to this thread? :smt023

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 5:46 pm 
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STPK wrote:
Well then that explains why you don't miss the backup singers and I do. :smt043


Seriously, that has NEVER been a secret :lol:
You boys aren't subtle enough for that!


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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 5:48 pm 
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Kim, re, Sam - Haha! Since I am officially an "old" man, I can beg off that pattern, right? I liked Sam because of his guitar and nothing more. :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 10:18 pm 
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Steve who drinks tea wrote:
I still think the record label were frightened enough by the change to back away from giving Tiger Suit the success it could have had - to say the least, KT talking about this radical change in her sound and then giving opening single performances of (Still A) Weirdo made her look like she was contradicting herself or just had no clue what a change in direction actuall meant. I think that was about the most 'safe' pick on the album for 'here's what people would expect from KT Tunstall' that they could have chosen. Personally I think Fade Like A Shadow would have been a great introductory single and then Come On Get In, Push That Knot Away or Uummannaq Song would have made a much bolder statement. I think the choice of UK singles fudged a more positive public understanding of what she was trying to do with that album



Absolutely SPOT ON there. If fans like myself were non-plussed by the first single choice (having been promised a different direction with TS in pre-release promo and site messages), god knows what the public made of it all. Tiger Suit is, for me, her best album yet, and as you say the whole project was effectively stuffed by the label's strategy. It saddens me to see TS going for £3 just weeks after release, and no follow-on buzz or interest from the press or the public beyond the first few weeks and the TV appearances.

I can wholly understand KT feeling that this is a bit of crossorads in her career. She's earned the right to dothings on her own terms.


EG.

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:41 am 
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eric generic wrote:
Steve who drinks tea wrote:
I still think the record label were frightened enough by the change to back away from giving Tiger Suit the success it could have had - to say the least, KT talking about this radical change in her sound and then giving opening single performances of (Still A) Weirdo made her look like she was contradicting herself or just had no clue what a change in direction actuall meant. I think that was about the most 'safe' pick on the album for 'here's what people would expect from KT Tunstall' that they could have chosen. Personally I think Fade Like A Shadow would have been a great introductory single and then Come On Get In, Push That Knot Away or Uummannaq Song would have made a much bolder statement. I think the choice of UK singles fudged a more positive public understanding of what she was trying to do with that album



Absolutely SPOT ON there. If fans like myself were non-plussed by the first single choice (having been promised a different direction with TS in pre-release promo and site messages), god knows what the public made of it all. Tiger Suit is, for me, her best album yet, and as you say the whole project was effectively stuffed by the label's strategy. It saddens me to see TS going for £3 just weeks after release, and no follow-on buzz or interest from the press or the public beyond the first few weeks and the TV appearances.

I can wholly understand KT feeling that this is a bit of crossorads in her career. She's earned the right to dothings on her own terms.


EG.



Yes, in hindsight I do agree that Steve nailed it. TS has been out for a calendar year in the US now and sadly, it left absolutely no mark on music here. Meanwhile, I still hear BHATCT and SIS with regularity. I thought the strategy behind releasing SAW first would have been to put some fruity listening into the mainstream before unleashing COGI for the big statement. Sadly it seems like everyone heard SAW and reacted with a resounding "meh" and walked away and the label then wrote any further marketing off. Looking back on it, I just don't think SAW fit well into the album. Others don't think Golden Frames did either however I actually view that as one of her most creative moments, plus I LOVE THAT SONG!

Maybe the question is....does the band really need to be changed drastically to shape the sound? Others convinced her she needed to go all the way and change the band for the new sound. I never bought that then and I still don't now, at least with hired guns and studio musicians. But I guess one would ever know unless they actually tried it first.

Maybe the drummer needs to go away for awhile. He's likely dragging her down. :smt043

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:47 am 
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Watch your woooords!!
Luke is not allowed to go anywhere!

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:57 am 
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What? Whud' I say? hee hee

I'd be remiss if I didn't add that I think Scarlet Tulip was much more of a defining moment in this era for her. You guys are going to love her solo show. Hopefully her voice will be as great as it was last April in Mpls. Shanty of a Whale proved to me that she doesn't even need an instrument to be a great performer (I sure wish she did that one live.) I wonder if ST was a way to pull back in some of her traditional fans who were disappointed with TS. I can't wait to start reading the reviews from those shows.

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:02 am 
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Couldn't agree more with everyone that it appears to have been the strategic (or lacking strategic) promotion, in terms of the songs released, of Tiger Suit have stuffed its impact - an upbeat first release (Uummannaq or Shadow) would have really shown that TS would be completely different to ETTT or DF.

Artists get slated for been one-trick-ponies and reeling out the same stuff all the time and then also get criticism for moving "outside the box" now and again. It appears it is an industry in which you can never win otherwise you are aiming at the mass marked who lap up any rubbish (*ahem* GaGa :evil: ).

It took a while to appreciate KT's change in direction, and had my musical tastes not been resonably diverse I could have rejected it after one listen and thought thats it with Tunstall for me. Thankfully I persevered and some tracks that I had an indifference to (i.e. Trudeaux, Lost) I now really love.

Kim wrote:
:smt005
And THAT is why all the boys are all pro-Charlotte!! :p


Quite possibly Kim :oops: :oops: . I only focussed on KT when Sam & Arnie were in the band - Charlotte is a (happy) distraction and while I like her playing it does feel a bit whorish to be going to see more than the artist. Can we have a grizzly lead guitarist next time so my attentions focus completely on KT!

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 8:11 am 
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Steve who drinks tea wrote:
I still think the record label were frightened enough by the change to back away from giving Tiger Suit the success it could have had - to say the least, KT talking about this radical change in her sound and then giving opening single performances of (Still A) Weirdo made her look like she was contradicting herself or just had no clue what a change in direction actuall meant. I think that was about the most 'safe' pick on the album for 'here's what people would expect from KT Tunstall' that they could have chosen. Personally I think Fade Like A Shadow would have been a great introductory single and then Come On Get In, Push That Knot Away or Uummannaq Song would have made a much bolder statement.


Completely agree there Steve. The record company totally ballsed up this album era with their strategy and the single releases. :smt018 It deserved/s way more success than what it/it has had - like EG, for me this is my fave album of her's (although it's probably a tie between ETTT and this) to date. I think there are some real solid songs on there that could've been hits if they'd been released/better marketed. Why the bigwigs didn't listen to us all saying PTKA should've been a single (amongst others), I'll never know. Why they released SAW first in the UK I'll never know either.

It's such a shame that this album has been written off and poorly promoted - I know this might sound silly, but tbh TS wasn't that drastic in terms of a change in direction IMO (or at least it doesn't feel that way to me now). If the big artists of the world can go off a tangent, why shouldn't KT be allowed to?

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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:56 pm 
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I think she can change up a whole lot for me personally as long as she keeps playing guitar really :lol:
And it also helps if it's music that I can dance/clap along to at gigs!

I really liked TS so much as it's got really upbeat songs, I really prefer them to the slower once if i'm honest. I'll love the ballads at first but I get 'bored' of them quicker than the faster ones!


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 Post subject: Re: Now that the current band has become the 'old' band...
PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:29 pm 
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I was apprehensive about the loss of Sam and Arnie but when TS came out it seems
like the change was not that much. I think I like TS better than DF but in reality it
is more 'different' than a question of better or not. KT wanted changes but her basic
style did not change that much. I also think TS did not get the promotional support that
DF received.

As far as changes are concerned I think I have been around (as a KT fan) long enough to
simply trust her judgment. I do love what she did for Scarlet Tulip (can't say ST without
thinking of Seattle Sherry) and think that it is the best she has done. I do think the 'Solo'
tour was great and it will be enjoyed by all when she starts it in UK etc.

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