Lots of talk about rock on the block but local rock’s gaining no stock

27May10

Rock ‘n’ roll is alive and well in the Quinte area. Or is it?

As much as it heartens me to see the quality of the big, mainstream rock shows coming to Belleville this summer, it alarms me that nobody seems to be carrying the flag to promote local artists.

It’s great that 3 Doors Down, ZZ Top, Alice Cooper, Collective Soul and many other rock notables are hitting out city over the next couple months, but at the end of the day, what does their presence here mean? Does it mean Bel Vegans love our rock ‘n roll? Well, yes. The appetite is present.

But bringing in a bunch of established rock acts that appeal to a mostly 35-and-up demographic and charging reasonable ticket prices to do so makes earning a fistful of dollars as easy as shooting fish in a barrel.

What, though, does any of this have to do with promoting local talent in a city that has shown little regard for nurturing its musicians? In a word, nothing.

This city needs a group, club owner, or business that will fight to promote local rock musicians and give them good venues to play. Would it mean a financial bonanza for said persons?

Of course not.

But it would provide a much-needed boost to young musicians fighting to get noticed in a city so disjointed and disconnected from its “club scene” that it’s forgotten how to rock with purpose.

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