November 5, 2006

Michigan's Musical Connection: Always A Fan

A few weeks ago I was talking with one of my close friends, catching up on all that has been happening to each of us this summer. As we talked, I mentioned this page and the MMC (Michigan's Musical Connection) that I have been assembling. He liked the idea and mentioned that it should be easy to find subject to spotlight. I explained that I was seeking more obscure or remote artists to profile at first. My rule has been only this so far - "No softballs".

He laughed at the prospect of people like Eminem, Kid Rock, Nugent, Stevie Wonder, or Seger being considered "softballs". When I explained that those artists are so easily recognized as being associated with Michigan, it would hardly add enough meat to the series in the early going. (Notice I said in the early going - I fully intended to dedicate a post these ambassadors of Michigan Music.)

I turned the tables on my friend a little though.

I suggested he write a piece about Bob Seger as he is a huge fan. At first, he declined outright but the more we talked about it, he began to give way. I told him that, though I enjoyed most of Seger's material, I don't really consider myself as much a fan as I know he is and I wanted to get a unique view. I suggested he write from the perspective of why Bob Seger has such fan appeal, both local and worldwide. He finally agreed and he has given me permission to post it here.

Always a Fan
by Jim Peters
His rock 'n roll soul runs so deep and true to his music and his audience, how could I not stay true to such a classic rock '’n roll icon as Bob Seger. The 60'’s, 70'’s, 80'’s, 90'’s, and this far into the new millennium...he'll never just "“roll away"”! The gibberish of him becoming more "Nashville" than "“Detroit"”, because of a couple crossover selections from his latest release, "Face the Promise", only proves his versatility over the years, and is testament to his continued success.

Be it fantasy or fact, I do have this memory of Bob playing at one of my "“teen club" dances (late 60'’s, early 70'’s -– eastside of Detroit), and it wouldn'’t surprise me to learn that most of his fans share the same thoughts. The experience of his music is so embedded in our lives. Whatever roads I'’ve taken, there'’s always been a Seger tune to smooth the rough rides and keep me on the straight and narrow ones! I'’ve always been able to recognize his music. Although I'’m not passionate about it, I think it'’s that you can recognize his passion in it...
the rockin' guitar, the rhythmic drums, some screaming sax, the sweetness of those seemingly ever-present back-up singers, whatever other instruments of Seger genius, and then let Bob loose with the mic, and that'’s a sound that is unmatched and unmistakebly classic rock '‘n roll!

Is it no surprise, the terms progressive, improved, both harder and softer, have all been applied to this release? Also no surprise, from "“Hourly Detroit" to the "“Detroit Free Press", the "“Metro Times"”, then to Jay Leno and David Letterman... his rock '‘n roll music, this album, the first in 11 years, the widespread interest, the anticipation, all the media hype, it's as though it'’s the debut of not only a new album, but a new artist! With a tour close to being a reality, perhaps we'll see a "“new" Bob Seger, refreshed, but not re-invented, leaving us all quite "“satisfied"”!

Thanks Jim! I really appreciate you taking the time to capture your thoughts and allow me to share with other Bob Seger fans.
We're working on the 6 billion, brother.



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