Thursday, November 12, 2009

New Fingertips contest: win the four-disc Hall & Oates box set

So there's a new Fingertips contest online and yet I just found out that my server is down, and there's no quick fix. Bummer.

So instead of linking you to the Contest page, as per usual, I'll put the details such as they are up here in the blog. The show must go on and all that.

So, okay, pondering the career of Daryl Hall & John Oates made me realize how rather fascinated I am by the hipness cycle in music. You know how it goes: a musician gets "too popular" at some point and therefore turns dreadfully unhip. Stays unhip for a goodly number of years. (There's probably a formula for exactly how long the unhipness lasts, depending upon the length of the popularity.) And then, as if by magic, something gives. Just a little at first. A few intrepid sorts start admitting in public that they like the guy (or band) after all. Or despite of it all. Or something. Soon enough, the "they're so unhip they're hip" dynamic kicks in big-time. Everyone lines up to say how much they've always always loved them. Other musicians clamor to record duets with them. Tribute albums are born. Box sets sell briskly. And now you hope they just live long enough to earn something from the resurgence.

One thing that usually strikes me about this whole cycle is that the musicians in question hardly ever deserve either the crazy popularity they once enjoyed or the awful slagging they got later for being so terribly horribly unhip.

Daryl Hall and John Oates certainly never deserved banishment. What, exactly, was the crime--they were too successful? Their songs were hits too often? (They did score 22 Top 20 singles; the best-selling duo of all time, if you must know.) Let's listen with our ears, shall we? These guys were good for quite a long time. Maybe their success was a bit over the top but still: not their fault. This is not a "guilty pleasure" (and by the way, I do not like the whole idea of "guilty pleasures," but that's another story). This is good pop music. And, in Do What You Want, Be What You Are, a good amount of it--it's a four-disc box set.

I have one box to give away. With apologies to international visitors, you must first of all be a resident of the United States. To enter the contest:

Send an email to prizecloset at fingertipsmusic (don't forget the dot com) with "Hall & Oates" in the subject line.

In the body of the email, please write:
- Your favorite "unhip" band or musician (I won't tell anyone); and:
- Your first name and last name, because, as usual, if you're going to win, I'm going to need to know. Anonymity has its limits.

Please use an email address that you check regularly so if you win, you'll be able to find out. You'd be surprised by the number of times I try to contact the winner and they've disappeared into the misty ether of the internet.

There will be only one winner (U.S. only!; just a reminder), who will be selected at random from eligible entries.

The deadline for entry is Wednesday November 25. The drawing will take place shortly thereafter; only the winner will be notified.

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