Sunday, April 28, 2002

While not quite a dirth, there have been a few articles recently about the death of Layne Staley, former singer for Alice in Chains. I find most of them apologetic in wanting to condemn heroine abuse, while at the same time portraying some kind of memorium for their contribution to "grunge". I am ambivalent. I think I made peace with the fact that GenX lost it's cultural "bite" as soon as Kurt Cobain shot himself. We found the act too extreme -- sure we were disillusioned and cynical, but not to the point of self-destruction... Which is why the remaining 30-somethings are making Staley's death a small footnote, as opposed to something that was a
watershed for a generation. Perhaps we've killed romanticism? Perhaps we no longer care what rockstars do behind closed doors because we care more about the product? Perhaps the ego has become divorced from the work? Perhaps a musician can simply perform and not have the press speculating if smack being shot in the dressing room has something to do with their depression and angst that comes out in their music? Ironically enough, as soon as Mr Cobain ended grunge effective in 1994, Generation Y came back with simultaneously with electronica and ecstacy, pop music took over and we've boy-band hell now ruling the airwaves and a healthy underground scene (ok somewhat...), pop diva's and their struggles are getting boring and letting the world destroy you is soooo 1994.
In any case - enough of that. Last night I went to a gala 75 Yr Anniversary party for the 5th avenue Theater. A friend managed to get Beate and I comps so we went for free and mingled with the Skinners' and Nordstroms', watching a century of Vaudville and Silver Screen Spectacle... Cyd Charice showed up to accept an award for Ann Miller. Looking quite elegant, we think she might have had bad eyesight as she nearly fell off the stage at one point (sadly ironic for someone who danced so gracefully). Afterwards, Beate and I managed to hideout in the wings and attended the staff afterparty on the stage with cake and champagne. We spoke to a few of the stars from past productions ("Hair" and "Some Happy Fella") - and I spilled Champagne on the artistic director's DKNY jacket... Oops.
One thing that was absent however was the electrifying tribute someone could have done to Nick Cave, the only one to perform a rock show at the 5th Ave, and his power in drawing the crowd out of their seats and to the stage. Guess they don't want to relive that problematic concert (velvet seats were ripped, people smoking, the venue just isn't cut out for any rock show no matter how mellow or subdued the talent... Ok, perhaps Low or Magnetic Fields could perform...)

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