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Tim From Wisconsin

HOB: My 2 Cents

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LC   

Marv,

Devil's advocate... or defeatist attitude?

I'm not sure what you're getting at, except: There's nowhere the Raspberries can ever play again, because if Cleveland and New York and LA aren't selling like they used to. Or am I not understanding something...?

("Selling out" doesn't have to be the measure of a successful show. You can sell "enough" tickets without selling out, no?)

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You need the smiley they have on the BOC board where the smiley is stirring the pot:) It's a message board, I don't think anyone is arguing, just putting out our opinions, which I believe is what the board is here for, no? Go to any board from a similar dinosaur era type band, and you'll see the same posts, the same arguments about set lists, length, tightness of trousers, etc. Nobody needs to get their feathers ruffled, just trying to get different views expressed. But to stir the pot some more, I had nothing against covers, until the set was cut from 2:20 down to 1:30, now every cover is one less song I love and can hear nowhere else.

I understand they have always done covers, but this reunion wouldn't have meant so much had they stayed a cover band, right? I think Eric et al need to review what brought them to the table, I can remember in another post he answered that only a few of their songs were hits or known by the audience. To this I'd say, look down at the crowd, and see how many people are singing along with the most obscure tunes in your repertoire. If you can't win them over with those songs, then they don't deserve to be at your show in the first place, Mr Carmen!!!

LC, if the Raspberries do a show near Monroeville, they need to save it until the Zombie walk on Halloween at the mall where they filmed Day Of The Dead!!

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darlene   

Adrienne, Great post and SO true! SOME controversy is lively, but "arguing" is pointless because no one changes anyone else's mind!

Also, maybe Raspberries have more fans in Pittsburgh than in Los Angeles. Who the hell KNOWS?! The point IS to recruit fans in BOTH places, in fact EVERYWHERE! That's what we're all trying to do here!

They have to do it the way they have to do it. They're doin' fine, so far!

:) --Darlene

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marvin   

Sorry LC I do not have a "defeatist attitude." I'd wager that I've done as much to support this band over 35 years than just about anyone. I also know reality when it hits me in the face. And that is, Raspberries are a band that are loved by a handful and admired by a few others, most of whom are in the obvious music markets. The cd sales and ticket sales have proven where those markets are.

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JohnO   

I don't think Marv's being defeatist; he's just facing the cold, hard reality of the fact that the Raspberries' music (as well as that made by similar bands) is not exactly in the mainstream nowadays. While I'm tempted to say "thank God!" to that, nonetheless, it doesn't increase our chances of hearing them live all over the country when only a handful of people in most cities are really interested!

I just heard an interesting perspective last night on the Yahoo Flamin' Groovies board. One of the constant/consistent subjects on that board is the prospect or possibility of one or more incarnations of that band reuniting and playing again. I posted early last night that a much better known power pop band, Raspberries, just played 4 reunion shows in NY/LA and didn't come close to selling out any of them. Many of the posters there weren't aware of the shows (no surprise), but several stated that they would have attended one or both of the NYC shows, had the tickets been "reasonably priced"....Hell, I don't think $50 (non-M&G) is that bad at all, considering you can get right up in front of the stage and stand right below your idols! You can pay way over $100 for any arena act nowadays, and expect to see the band/act up close only if you bring binoculars! Nonetheless....some people think our boys are charging too much (I certainly don't!)

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marvin   

I certainly don't consider a $50 ticket to be unreasonable, especially (as John mentions) there are acts charging way more than that - but that's just me. Maybe the 'average' arena fan can afford the $100 ticket but the 'average' Raspberries fan can't afford $50. I think the key statement here is "Many of the posters there weren't aware of the shows."

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marvin said:

Sorry LC I do not have a "defeatist attitude." I'd wager that I've done as much to support this band over 35 years than just about anyone. I also know reality when it hits me in the face. And that is, Raspberries are a band that are loved by a handful and admired by a few others, most of whom are in the obvious music markets. The cd sales and ticket sales have proven where those markets are.

I've been trying to say this for three years. Three years ago, look at the crowds in Atlantic City, Wiconsin, the outdoor Cleveland show, and Denver...you'll get no argument on this board as to the quality of the music and the band, but like caviar, if you love it, you'll pay for it, if you don't, you won't!

Everyone knows I've always been a big fan of "featuring Eric Carmen", I'd drive to Cleveland next week if I knew they were going to play more than one Eric song, but after 4 shows and hundreds of dollars, I can't justify the expense.

The first time around was about "us", they really did it for us fans! The 2nd time around should have been to make a few bucks and to me that could have been accomplished by 1) featuring Eric's music along with the 'berries 2) Had an opening act or 3) been an opening act themselves

...instead we got the same show, but a shorter set list....not that I didn't enjoy it, but again it's hard to justify spending all that dough!

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I've been saying that some cross-pollenation would be good -- whether "featuring Eric Carmen" or opening act or both.

Hope most shows have multi-tiered pricing. Some folks will pay 50 or 100, while others only 20 or 30 bucks. Prior holiday plans and general holiday focus may detract from sales in some cases.

I'm still thinking February in Florida has a nice ring to it. April in Atlanta??

WORKS FOR ME!!! Tour w/ Cheap Trick --- have Fountains of Wayne open up for ya!

Variety IS the spice of life!!!! :):lol::cool:

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marvin   

Yes there are a zillion ideas on how to attract more people, but how many of them actually make sense?

1. February in Florida or April in Atlanta - again I'll use the Pittsburg example. I'm not convinced that any of these cities are markets where Raspberries can sell enough tickets.

2. Tour with ___________ - all fine and good, but going on an extended tour likely means leaving your 'day' job - something that not all the members of the band can do.

3. Bring in Eric's solo material - on a name-recognization basis, makes the most sense. It won't please everyone, but it will likely ring some memory bells for fans who are not familiar with the band.

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Here in the Atlanta area during the summer there was a combo concert of Def Leppard, Foreigner & Styx. This created some 'buzz'. Several people were talking about it. Need to create media buzz & combo concerts actually does this --- this alleviates/solves the situation where many people would've gone to the concert had they known about it. Nothing from nothing leaves nothing. Nothing ventured - nothing gained. Time to tinker!!!

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marvin   

Raspy you cannot put Raspberries in the same category as the other bands you've mentioned. The other bands have name-recognization, Raspberries do not. Creating 'media buzz' is fine, but it still doesn't convince the casusal fan to buy tickets, especially fans in 'non-major' markets.

Sorry to belabour the Eric solo music issue, but again when you talk about this, you're talking about "ABM", "Hungry Eyes", and possibly "MMLC." These are the songs the casual fan knows and the songs that will click in their brain when they make the Eric - Raspberries connection. As much as the hard-core fans love "American As Apple Pie", the casual fan wouldn't know this song from "Tonight."

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MJ   

Here are more of my two cents - if you bring in more Eric solo material you need to extend the show longer to acommodate those songs so you don't end up cutting even more Raspberries tunes out - I could deal with maybe 1 more Eric song (sorry Eric) but then only to be fair you need to have a Fotomaker or a Boxer or a Dave solo song as well, or put 2 or 3 more original Berries tunes on there that were taken out from the first tour in 04/05. I'd just prefer a longer set list - and a bunch of happy Berrie guys - that's all I'm asking for.

Travel is expensive and I can't make every show but if I can get a cheap enough flight and hotel I will try and to go as many as they want to do in the upcoming year - even if it is a Hole in the Wall lol.

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JohnO   

While I agree with Marv on his 3 points above.....regarding #3, I'll also mention that I was unable to talk two good friends of mine into accompanying me to the July 2005 BB Kings shows because they assumed that a good deal of the show would be devoted to Eric's solo material....even though I told them that they had been, to date, only playing Raspberries' material. My guess is that adding a few more of his songs, especially his solo hits, would likely attract more fans than those who would stay away.

Regarding point # 2 - I'd personally hate to see the band opening for ANYONE else, regardless of how big a name it might be!....But if it's in the best interests of the 'Berries, I'd support it. But it would be difficult, IMO, to pair them with another band whose music complements them. Power pop music is not in vogue. Bonjovi and Springsteen have been mentioned in the past. IMO, the former is a very bad match (as are those bands that Joe mentions above), and the latter ain't gonna happen unless Bruce starts using opening acts, which he hasn't done in ages.

As I've posted in the past, pairing them with any arena act invariably means that most of the crowd won't even be there when they play.

Pairing another pop-oriented band as an opener for the 'Berries (like Fountains of Wayne or maybe the Smithereens)? I doubt it would increase the crowds at all. I can think of quite a few killer pop bands who would be better openers, music-wise (Muck & The Mires, The Spongetones, Magic Christian, Sprague Bros., Pernice Bros., etc.), but most of them simply aren't that well-known enough to draw in more people.

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marvin   

Back to the original thread, you bring in a couple more Eric songs, you cut out the covers, and then there's no need to cut any 'berries songs.

For the sake of diplomacy putting in a Dave and Wally solo song makes sense, but not to the 'casual' fan who doesn't know any of this material. This 'causual' fan WILL be familiar with Eric's material.

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marvin said:

Sorry to belabour the Eric solo music issue, but again when you talk about this, you're talking about "ABM", "Hungry Eyes", and possibly "MMLC." These are the songs the casual fan knows and the songs that will click in their brain when they make the Eric - Raspberries connection. As much as the hard-core fans love "American As Apple Pie", the casual fan wouldn't know this song from "Tonight."

But the fact is -- some of the bands of that category would love to have a combo concert w/ the Raspberries --- especially featuring Eric Carmen. Yes, bring on : "ABM", "Hungry Eyes", and "MMLC". I've understood from another thread that MMLC has already been rehearsed by the 'Berries??!! While I'm more interested in Raspberries material, I love MMLC.

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JohnO   

I don't doubt this at all, but I do doubt that most fans of Def Leppard, Foreigner or Styx (or other bands of this category) would be that interested in seeing their boys with Eric & co.

Under any type of scenario of this sort, Raspberries would be opening (and not likely billed as high, either), as they're the least commercially successful of the bunch....and, going back to a prior post, I doubt most fans would even be in their seats when Eric, Wally, etc. are playing their set!

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Actually Marvin...Being the originator of this thread - I never mention anything about a problem with cover songs.

Hey - In 9 days I will be seeing them live again, and the least of my concerns is the set list! I hope for good driving weather for me and my fellow travelers, and safe travels for the band members and crew!

I think it would be cool if they threw in 1 Christmas song and maybe Eric singing Dan Fogelberg's "Same Old Lang Syne" - Now THAT would be cool!

Tim

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Doug   

Personally, I feel they probably would draw more 'casual' fans with more Eric hits, but...

So what?? Are the concerts for people who don't even know who the Berries are? Is the point simply to draw as many bodies as possible regardless of who, or their level of interest? Hey, if dollars are the only criteria, why not think big?

All I know is I've been a Raspberries fan since 1972, and I'll be glad to pay (and HAVE paid) whatever it costs to see them, but I wouldn't be interested in an Eric Carmen's Greatest Hits concert, sorry. And the more the Berries' shows become Eric solo-hits shows, the less likely folks like me are going to want to go.

Now, maybe a 'casual' fan will pay $50 to see "Eric and whoever they are"... maybe. Maybe you'll even get 2 'casual' fans for every 1 like me who gets discouraged and passes. But I doubt it. And even if you did, they'd never spend even half of what I did on VIP, M&G, Deluxe CD/DVD, multiple shows, friends I brought with

me, etc.

Frankly, I just don't think the "more Eric solo" plan holds much water. If *I* were managing them, I'd have them get into the studio and record some new music, using contributions from Wally & Dave especially, but also from the Overdubs or outside writers (heck, if you asked nicely, maybe Mr. Bon Jovi, Mr. Stanley or Mr. Springsteen would even donate a song to their musical heroes). Have fun! Don't expect a 'big comeback', 'cause they weren't that famous in the first place! Don't worry about whether you make the Billboard charts. Just enjoy the amazing sounds you guys make and do it for that. I think if you really love what you're doing, it'll come across and people will want to see/hear it. If the goal is 'big-time' $ or fame, I think they're in for disappointment, whatever the plan.

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marvin   

Yes, the point is to draw in as many as you can. Fine and dandy to play for 250-500 die-hards, but that's a financial nightmare for the guys. You can't keep doing that.

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JohnO said:

but several stated that they would have attended one or both of the NYC shows, had the tickets been "reasonably priced"....Hell, I don't think $50 (non-M&G) is that bad at all, considering you can get right up in front of the stage and stand right below your idols! You can pay way over $100 for any arena act nowadays, and expect to see the band/act up close only if you bring binoculars! Nonetheless....some people think our boys are charging too much (I certainly don't!)

Hell, I paid $50 for a hamburger (almost) in NYC! :lol:

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I'd pay $50 in a minute to see any incarnation of the Flamin Groovies. I've paid to see the Raspberries 5 times now, and the only real disappointment so far was the much shorter sets of 2007. I would hate to see them cut the sets any shorter by opening for an unrelated band. I've mentioned BOC here before. This past year, they toured opening for Lynyrd Skynyrd. Not a good match, the fans didn't show until they were mostly done, and instead of seeing them in clubs right up close for $20-35, decent tickets ranged from $75-100, for a set reduced from 15 songs to 7. I didn't see them once this year because of that. If the Raspberries do the same, I would have to skip their shows too. As I said above, the covers were not an issue to me in a 2 and 1/2 hour set, but in an hour and 1/2, they eat up too much time, especially with ABM as part of the show too.

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