Cadillac Sky on Mountain Stage

Bryan Simpson from Cadillac Sky talks about the band and their music during their visit to public radio’s Mountain Stage.   Not the best quality on the stage sound on the video, but nice insight on where these young guys are and where they think they’re going.

C-Sky came out of the Southern bluegrass scene in the last couple years with a sophomore release Gravity’s our Enemy CD on Skaggs Family Records.  I saw them play last year at the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old Time Music Association summer festival.  I’ve read where now and then they had been a bit too “high energy” for more traditional venues.  Here they played to the crowd and I got to talk to a couple of the guys at the T-Shirt tent after their show.

Wow.  Dynamic.

Yet even then they gave hints of a desire to risk the wrath of Bill Monroe‘s ghost.  Dabbling in smokin’ that newgrass scene.  Bryan gives us this:

“I think with the internet and stuff, people are inundated with alot more, alot of other kinds of music.  So maybe they’re opening their minds a little more.”

Cadillac Sky’s high energy style really got me hooked on their first two discs.  These guys put their all into it.  Yet the more times I re-play this segment, the more curmudgeonly I feel.

It’s not that I don’t really like their new tunes.  I’m just not sure I like where their new tunes are going.  The guy bouncing around Stage Left, David, is a new addition to the band since I saw them.  When you look up his solo work, he’s definitely no part of Bill Monroe.  The clips I’ve heard off this year’s Weary Angel EP gets kinda weird for me… and there’s this with the clips on their Myspace:

Belying their bluegrass instrumentation that imitates that of the original “Bluegrass Boys”, their music looks as much to Radiohead and the Beatles for inspiration as it does to Bill Monroe…

I hate the Beatles.

We see over and over, from artists to restaurants to our favorite consumer products, this tension between being true to who you are and the need to grow.  To not get stale.  To reach a larger market.

Over and over, I’m disappointed when I find an artist that seems authentic and true to their soul.  Only to change.  Maybe they grow in new directions, or simply get bored.  Maybe they give in to the temptation to chase the fickle plastic popular market.  Whatever it is, it seems just when I find something I like it goes and changes on me.

To paraphrase a favorite philosopher, change for change’s sake is the philosophy of the cancer cell.

It would be easy to sit here and feel sorry for myself.  To mourn this nice little band’s departure from my comfort zone.

Except it’s not about me.

And it’s not about you.

I know what I like.  You know what you like.  And (hopefully) Bryan knows what he likes.   If I’m not liking what’s he’s liking, then I can just go my merry way.  Life went on before I found some nice tunes from his band, and life will go on if we part ways.

I’m disappointed, yes, except it’s not about me.


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