Thursday 12 December 2013

Blame It On The Rain

There are children going to bed tonight hungry and cold. Some have been beaten or worse, and the whole concept of a Happy Christmas is foreign to them. People have lost their jobs and don’t know how they will pay the bills or how they will find another job. Someone has had their furnace break down and the temperature will fall far below zero tonight. There are places in the world where the strong rule and treat the people around them as less than animals. I guess the point I am trying to make is that the human condition can be tragic.

Instead of my thinking about all of these tragic happenings, I spend a part of my day thinking about Milli Vanilli. Milli Vanilli, for those who don’t know, was one of the most popular R & B pop duo from the late 80’s and early 90’s. They were a created duo, not so much different than the Monkeys. They had a couple of hits and the one that I remember was called “Blame it on the Rain”. I kind of liked it then and just listening to it, I still kind of like it. Most of the rest of their music I could do without, but as I said, they were very popular.
The catch, and there is always a catch is that Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus who made up the duo didn’t actually sing their songs. There are countless explanations why and lots of finger pointing, but the bottom line is that they were lip syncing the songs. When they were performing and the recording began to skip, they didn’t notice at first and when they finally clued in, they ran off of the stage. Fab and Rob returned and finished the concert to the delight of their fans. No big deal…right?

God, it was as if they had been the ones who taught Hitler and Stalin about genocide. The music wasn’t my kind and truthfully I don’t follow the industry, but all hell broke loose at the time. They went from mega popular stars to has beens in a matter of days. Every now and then, one or both would surface and release a record, but neither or both could not capture the fame they once enjoyed. Rob fell into drugs and crime and eventually died of alcohol and drug overdose in 1998. Tragic!

I don’t see why all of the hoo-ha. Most of the music we hear is recorded and we don’t have the benefit of watching an entertaining show. I have been to more than a few concerts, and personally I like it when the music sounds just like the recordings. When it doesn’t I feel cheated. In a small venue, where you are within spitting distance of the entertainer, I want them to sing, but if I am one of twenty or thirty thousand, I really don’t care.

Bottom line…Milli Vanilli were frauds. Very entertaining frauds, but frauds just the same. Does it matter that they were lip syncing? Not to me and not to the millions of people who loved them until they were caught. I guess an argument could be made that the fans paid a premium to see them perform live. They got half of what they paid for, so really they should be half mad at best.

If the fans don’t like it, then they should blame it on the rain.

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