“Mediocrity knows nothing higher than itself, but talent instantly recognizes genius”…Arthur Conan Doyle
“Spud in the Box” is a band of six very young boys that have been making music together for only a year, and in that short period have a repertoire of their own songs that can keep their audience captivated for more than an hour. Their USP: great lyrics that are beyond their years; music that reverberates with melody and youthful exuberance; and adorable on-stage chemistry that infects the audience.They obviously enjoy playing their own music, and choose to play it exclusively, refusing to do gigs that require them to play covers. They do not mind waiting for opportunities that allow them this “indulgence” of their individualism and they have an equally young manager who believes in them enough to encourage this stubborn trait!!
Recently they played at a new venue, one they had not played at before. As usual, they worked really hard for this gig, practising several hours a day, getting their set ready with precision. The on-stage time being longer than usual, this time they had prepared a set combining their own songs with a few covers. But just before they got started, a “Senior Vice President” of the organization (who by the way is a former Supermodel and ex- Miss India) came up to them with her demand: “Play covers for me!!” With no clue about this band and what they do, and no role in arranging their performance at the venue that evening, she obviously had no business trying to change their pre-planned set. They complied by starting with one cover, and then switched over to their own songs: she threw a fit!! She yelled at their manager, threatened and grumbled, called them “defiant”, threw her weight around, and educated them of her stature and clout: immature behaviour that hints at a mediocre capability. The young boys, ignoring her on-going ranting, continued to play their set as they had plannedentertaining the audience as they were paid to do: mature behaviour that hints at professionalism and confidence.
Entertainment can be of various types, and those that arrange it for their customers have a right to choose between live original renditions, live covers/ mixes, or DJ’s playing pre-recorded songs/ music. But all the choosing should be done prior to engaging musicians (obviously!!) and most people would agree that it is really high-handed and insulting to suddenly makea band that plays originals, play covers: totally disrespecting art, and the creative pride of the artist.
But then again, how would a former supermodel and ex Miss India understand this creative pride? For isn’t modelling all about using your “God-given and Man-made” beauty to showcase clothes and accessories made with other people’s talent?