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May 26, 2011 

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Op Ed: Music Trumps Everything - Bob Lefsetz
Posted: May 25, 2011

Read this story:

"The secret of Adele's success?  No festivals, tweeting - or selling out.Soul superstar reveals how staying small has made her massive":

This is SO right it should be distributed to every wannabe musician to shedlight on the proper direction to take in a career.

It's about music.  And credibility.  And Adele has both.

The public believes her music is real and believes she's all about themusic.  That's another one of America's downfalls, executives wanting biggerpaychecks convincing vulnerable musicians that they've got to play with theFortune 500 and Clear Channel to get ahead.


People want to believe. That's what blew up music forty years ago, that'swhat's been lost in the MTV/CD era.  People no longer believe the artistsare all about pursuing their craft, getting it right.  People can't identifywith artists the same way they can't identify with Lloyd Blankfein and therest of the Wall Street titans.  Come on, read that Mariah Carey tripe.  Isthis YOU?

But Adele is not a perfect physical specimen, at least by mainstream mediastandards, and she's vulnerable and you can relate.  THAT'S the essence ofmusic.

Neil Young had it right.  Tying up with corporations sullies the art.  Ithas a chilling effect.  Gilbert Gottfried might have put his Aflac income atrisk, but no musician would do this.  Hell, you can't get most musicians toeven evidence a political view, for fear of pissing off some potentialaudience member in the hinterlands.

It's your name on the marquee.  Not Jimmy Iovine's.

Then again, Jimmy Iovine should be ashamed of himself for appearing on"American Idol".  You've got to watch the final.  After all the mediahoopla, the testimony about J. Lo and Tyler, THESE are the contestants?Charisma challenged tykes singing songs written by hacks?  Is this a joke?

Funny how only English acts will underplay.  Both Adele and Mumford couldsell more tickets, but think it would work against them.

Adele appears on the side of her fans, by railing against the specialpackages made to cash in at the cash register but rip off buyers.

And no amount of Tweeting and Facebooking and online dunning will make upfor lame music.

And if you've got great music, the rest is superfluous.  We've got the meansto spread the word, the Internet is king, it's fast and it's seen as free.We want to shove something down the pipe, something we believe in, that wewere not overhyped on, that we were not beaten over the head with, that wethink is on our side, something that speaks to the human condition,something that's great on its own terms.

The public has voted.  They think that's Adele.

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