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Opinion

UW-River Falls needs an underground music scene

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February 5, 2010

For as long as I’ve been here, I haven’t seen a single inch of an underground music scene. This surprises me a little. River Falls is a college town. Where is the college town spunk? The college town swagger? The college town music? I mean, we can’t strive to to match the workings of Dinkytown’s musically independent animal kingdom, but we should be able to fill the Corner every weekend!

Instead we’re resorting to karaoke at every bar, every night to supplement the lack of truly unique music.

We’re a creative bunch, aren’t we? Our art and music departments are alive and kicking; and yet the biggest thing to come out of River Falls is still that gymnast.

For “Music in the Park” why should we have to import bands from the Cities? Why can’t we be more than a consumer of semilocal lyrics, a place visited on the edge of the map?

Why can’t we be an exporter of great indie bands! A diamond of modern creativity on the edge of the metropolitan grid.

I’m saying we can be! One may argue that we’re a commuter campus. Students come here for class and then leave. But as far as I can tell if you can drive, you are equally capable of starting music groups. Or, if not, being very enthusiastic fans.

Make a real commitment to your college here, people!

Start a band that others can respect, that represents what makes us tick, a harmonization of what we wish we could say in the words we can’t find.

The older generation of River Falls has it more together artistically than we do! I mean, they hold art festivals during the summer, and play concerts in black jeans and tucked in long johns.

We can beat these guys!

Look, if Brickhouse Music is the pinnacle of our underground prowess, we have some serious issues. Their studio is laughable, if you can even find it amidst the junk they pile in that basement. I mean, they sell Hello Kitty guitars for Christ sake.

I can’t blame them, really. They’re operating in a town whose most musically active demographic is still struggling through the pains of puberty.

We don’t have to start big, people. Let’s all just promise to put down the wafer thin guitars of the Hero and make an effort to learn a real instrument, start a real rock band.

Get out of your dorm rooms and onto a stage!

If you suck, I still want to hear you. It’ll at least give us something to build on. Give us a foundation in order to form a more perfect union of college life and local music.

And if there are indie bands out there, hiding in the dark and damp basements of residence halls, or frat houses, I’m telling you it is safe to come out!

You are the parents of the cultural renaissance this college town so badly needs.

I’ve witnessed support for local music in this community! I saw it when Cloud Cult played on campus. I see it when Saving One comes to town. Now it’s time for us to have our own groups, our own sound.

It’s time for our own revolution.

I don’t even care what genre your music is. Play whatever you want, just make sure it’s yours. We want to hear you.

There’s no competing with the behemoth of U of M’s indie scene, they’ve had a long, solid head start. I just want to hear the beating heart of River Falls on drums played by a kid I sit next to in class tomorrow.

Let’s shake off the shadow of Uptown, slide from under the weight of Dinkytown and start something closer to home.

Let’s tell the world that UW- River Falls is here, we have words, we have sound and it’s nobody else’s but our own.

Kol Tuv.

Chaia means life and Kimi-Chaia Lindberg tries to live it to the fullest. Writing is what she loves. Spanish, Hebrew, Portuguese and English are the words she uses. Tel Aviv is where she is inspired.

Comments

Chaia on 10 Feb 2010: It's a chicken and egg paradox. If we start forming bands for the use of River Falls, will River Falls rally around and create the resources you mentioned? We have frat houses, we have sorority houses, so there are resources. Basement parties happen here, I see them. We just need bands to advertise themselves around town and start a phenomenon. smile

Dan on 08 Feb 2010: Where are the venues that will let bands play for no booking cost? Where are the basements that have a PA system set up for a band to play? These are your glaring omissions. A rally cry, yes, but if you want bands to play, provide resources for them.

Andy on 06 Feb 2010: You have an excellent point. Bring on the underground!