Posted by Chris Mitchell on January 12, 99 at 21:55:19:
Ok, since everyone else has had their say, I might as well have mine (even though I have to wake up in 6 hours).
I have been a hard core Savatage fan only since October 17, 1997, at the Birch Hill in New Jersey. I had previously heard of Savatage, of course, and had Gutter Ballet (given to me by my best friend), and a copy of HOTMK. But up until that night, I had never followed them closely. I saw them put on the most incredible set I've seen in a long time. They shed blood, sweat, and tears that night and it showed in their music. I promptly became a hard core fan of Savatage; even if only for the albums that were out at that time. I proceeded to get somehow, someway, anything that they played. Some stuff I liked, some stuff I only sort of liked.
The point of all that is, us nameless, faceless fans don't listen to music because we think this guy or that guy "made the band." We don't listen to music because of whatever reasons they made the music (I'll get back to that in a bit). We don't listen to music for the people in the band (this too). We listen to music because it *gasp* sounds good and it effects us in one way or another. At least, that's why I personally listen to it. Hell, I loved Streets when every friend I had around me at the time couldn't stand the album. I didn't even know any names in the band at the time. I just knew I liked it, the musicianship was incredible, and the emotion in the music showed through to me clear as day. In other words, I liked the music for the music, not the people who played it. When it comes right down to it, I couldn't care less who plays it (to a point), just whether it sounds good or not.
I've read a few posts from the people who feel it's necessary to voice their opinion on a board where they know they will get a hostile response. They also feel it's necessary to hide behind fake e-mails and nicknames. I absolutely couldn't care less why they are intentionally trying to infuriate as many people as possible. I wouldn't have even read the damn post had it not been followed by 547 responses. Everyone has a right to voice their own opinion. If you don't agree with it, that's fine, but to turn this board into a flame war is signing its death warrant. This board was put up for Sava fans to get together, trade rare stuff, yak it up about a band that makes music they enjoy listening to, etc. If a very few vocal minority want to waste their nights posting messages to piss people off, the best way you can make sure they don't post again is to bore them off of it. Someone has mentioned it already; JUST DON'T RESPOND TO IT! Have we forgotten the Jeff and Zak pool cleaning posts from a few months back? Have we forgotten Jeff's statement that he thought the board should be canned? Apparently so.
Ok, now to the actual points the SavaFarce people are trying to make.
To say that Savatage is in it purely for the money is the most unbelievable statement I've heard in a long time. Are you kidding me? Savatage and every band like them are killing themselves playing in rinky dink clubs in the USA and trucking all their shit across the ocean to play to only marginally larger venues in Europe, Asia, etc. They have never, aside from TSO, had an album that did well compared to the rest of the mainstream, Marilyn Manson Rage Against the Machine, numbers. I'd be willing to bet big money that when Paul, Jon and all associated with it, came up with the idea of TSO, they never in their wildest dreams thought that the damn thing would go Gold. For Christ's sake, we're talking about a metal band coming out with a Christmas album. You can't honestly tell me that anyone thought this album would appeal to as many people as it has. Those appearances on Rosie, Conan, CNN Showbiz, and QVC were probably as big a shock to the band as to the Savatage fans. If they wanted to make money and "sell out," they could have come up with MUCH more lucrative ways than with a Christmas album and the albums that Savatage has released before or after Criss's death. But let's just say that one of the reasons they made the music is to make money. Imagine that!!! Wanting to take care of your family and be able to support them, clothe them, feed them, and have a sense of pride that what you do someone is willing to pay for!! The shock could kill a person!!!
Ok, to say that the band just isn't the same since Criss passed away. Absolutely right, and thank God. Could you imagine hearing the same exact style of music, album after album, year after year? That's why I love PROGRESSIVE metal. It changes, advances, and evolves. In other words it PROGRESSES. Imagine that. And yes, Criss was one of a kind guitar player. But guess what, life deals the cards, and you play the hand. Sometimes that means losing great musicians; Criss Oliva, Randy Rhoades, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Cliff Burton. It doesn't make what comes after less because of their passing, just different. I love Wake of Magellan. I love Streets. I love them both for totally different reasons, but to put one above the other is stupid cuz music, which effects emotions most of all, can't be rated, no matter how hard Billboard tries.
I also heard something about this member or that member not even being around when Criss played. WAKE THE HELL UP!!! This band has had 5000 line changes since it's inception waaaaaayyy back in the early 80's. Jeez, when Criss passed, only Jon was left of the original lineup. At least I think so. I don't keep tabs on lineup changes. I just listen to the music and enjoy it. Hell, the damn name even changed. Avatar to Savatage. So, to try to put a stability gauge on a band that is ever changing is only inviting disappointment, which is unwarranted.
Ok, wake up now, cuz I'm done. If you want to respond to this, please don't take up message board space with a subject that has gotten WAAAAY out of hand. E-mail me, and I promise, that's my real name and e-mail. That's why I even read the message board, to find people who have a similar interest in music with their own viewpoints and opinions. It's called variety. Everyone should try it some time.
P.S. I'm trying my damdest to learn Agony and Ecstacy on guitar, and it's killing me!! My hands will never be the same again.
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