My Stories

Parenting 

I like to think I am good at making decisions in life, but to be honest, I am pretty bad and I’m sure a lot of others are as well, especially when it comes down to deciding among multiple options. Maybe I am getting better at it with age, who knows. But one thing I am sure off is I try my best to make the best decision based on the information I have at that point in time. And for some reason it’s easy to make a decision that involves me, but when it involves my children, it’s hard. Actually it’s pretty god damn hard because I am making a decision for someone else’s future.

Ideally it would be great if kids could make their own decisions from multiple options, but according to adults, kids are not capable. Maybe the kids are good at making the correct decision because they don’t over analyse a situation the way adults do.

I am always on my kids’ case about poor judgement or a poor decision. And it upsets me. I feel like the Douglas C. Neirdemayer character in “Animal House” and the Twisted Sister clips. It feels like it’s only a matter of time before my kids rise up and tell me “we’re not gonna take it”.

So what went wrong?

Why did I become the parent that I so didn’t want to be?

Why did I breach my own standards?

How did I fall to the dark side?

It’s funny how the pressures of life outside the family home get vented in the family home. The stress of keeping a job to pay for the mortgage and bills, well the kids cop it. The stress of the workplace, the kids also cop it. I feel like crap even typing this. I purchased them iPads, PS4’s Xbox, Nintendo and what not and then yell at them when they use these tools constantly.

Is their homework done?

Have they read?

Have they done this or that?

Seriously.. Should I expect them to be more responsible?

I had parents that didn’t care about my schooling or even ask me if I did my homework. I think by them not caring, it gave me a certain responsibility to care about myself when it came to school and life in general. But I cannot be like that with my kids. I care too much. I want to know what’s happening. It’s a vicious world we live in and society is a dog eat dog vacuum. Knowledge is power and I want my kids to be armed with it.

So I need to get my act together and change my style. Because the yelling parent is the one I don’t want to be. I asked my kids if I am constantly on their case and they didn’t answer me. I guess they didn’t hear me, because their attention is taking up by the black mirrors on their laps.

Erghhhhh.

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A to Z of Making It, Copyright, Music, My Stories, Piracy, Stupidity, Unsung Heroes

And Comparisons For All….

What a month in the world for new music.

After Bon Jovi withheld “The House Is Not For Sale” for a week from Spotify, the band managed to land the Number 1 spot again and sold over 128,000 units via a concert ticket promotion campaign that included a physical copy of the album with every ticket purchased. And the mainstream press lapped up the news.

While today, both Metallica and Sixx A.M. released new albums. “Hardwired To Self Destruct” and “Prayers For The Blessed” hit the streets. Meanwhile, Avenged Sevenfold’s unexpected album drop “The Stage” has had two consecutive weeks in the Top 10 Billboard charts. But those anyone care about the charts.

Is anyone listening to the albums?

At least Metallica, Sixx A.M. and Avenged Sevenfold didn’t withhold their album from Spotify like Bon Jovi did and treated their paying streaming fans the same as their fans who purchase a physical product.

“Hardwired” is up to 11,526,511 streams on Spotify and 21,076,824 views on YouTube, while “Moth Into Flame” is at 7,531,372 streams on Spotify and 12,859,400 views on YouTube. “Atlas Rise”, a song which came out a week ago has 6,793,498 views on YouTube.

Bon Jovi’s new music on the other hand pales compared to Metallica. The “This House Is Not For Sale” video came out three months on YouTube and it has 5,115,129 views. “Atlas Rise” from Metallica which came out a week ago has already overtaken this song. Other pre-release singles, “Knockout” has 793,789 views on YouTube and “Labor Of Love” has 480,060 views on YouTube.

This tells me that Bon Jovi is not gaining any new fans while Metallica still is. Even Lars Ulrich admitted as much when he was at a loss to explain how their self-titled “Black” album was still moving 2000 units a week 25 years after its release.

Avenged Sevenfold’s “The Stage” video that came out a month ago is up to 9,292,711 views and it has way more than Bon Jovi’s three videos combined.

If you want to compare listens, Avenged Sevenfold’s “Hail To The King” music video released 3 years ago has 67,228,814 views on YouTube. Bon Jovi’s “Because We Can” music video, also released 3 years ago, has 14,483,692 views. So it’s pretty safe to say that Jovi’s last proper album was a dud of epic proportions and it looks like “This House Is Not For Sale” is headed for the same fall. But those charts show it’s a number 1 album and the mainstream press is all over it. That’s the one part the big legacy players still control in music. The news cycle and their belief is he who reaches the most people wins today. But there is no story in Bon Jovi’s Number 1 album.

I heard the album today and it’s already in the rear view, fading fast. It was withheld from Spotify for 7 days and it comes out on the service when Metallica and Sixx A.M release albums that are way better than Bon Jovi’s offering. So my listening attention will be diverted to those bands for the next few weeks.

Streaming services are now the biggest contributors to the record labels bottom line. Streaming has won. The majority of people who like music, listen to recorded music via a streaming service. And if Scott Ian and the other guys from Anthrax can get behind streaming, anyone can be converted. Maybe not Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley.

A scorched earth publicity campaign might get a decent return on first week sales and then what.

Selling a 130,000 copies in a week or even a million copies in week, in a country of 300 plus million is a needle in a haystack. But the news reports it. If the news cycle wants to report on bands selling, they should report on Five Finger Death Punch, Breaking Benjamin, Disturbed, Shinedown, Skillet and Volbeat, who still have their albums on the charts, after months and in same years over a year and half since release date. Yep these artists are still selling units or racking up enough streams to count as a unit sale. But those bands don’t own the news cycle and they didn’t make it big in the 80’s, so why would the media report on them.

There is a common misconception that fans of artists who made it big in the 80’s or the 90’s don’t care about their new music. That’s not true, we do care about their new music. But it needs to be good for us to care and it needs to be good enough to attract a new generation to care as well. An artist’s career is dependent on the need to replenish their fan base as fans drop out and new fans drop in.

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