It's all about the rock and roll
August 21, 2003 7:57 AM   Subscribe

I've never heard of TAB (Tommy Aguilar Band) who apparently became quite popular in the mid-90's, but Off The Record is nonetheless a fascinating read, offering great insight into what it's really like to be in a band. Michelle Rubin, the bass player, offers a journal describing one of their first disastrous tours. Tommy has a write-up that is also well worth reading. The book gets rave reviews.
posted by ashbury (8 comments total)

The stories in the excerpts from the tour diary are why I'm apprehensive about piling into a van to drive around to random cities with my band. (Web site in transition, so no self-link here.)
posted by emelenjr at 8:13 AM on August 21, 2003

I've never heard of TAB (Tommy Aguilar Band) who apparently became quite popular in the mid-90's ...

Since "Off the Record" is a novel, typically constructed of invented stuff, it'd be quite a feat if you did own any Tommy Aguilar Band discs.
posted by sacre_bleu at 8:17 AM on August 21, 2003

Made up band or not, whoever wrote that tour diary nailed a couple of things dead on.

I started having flashbacks of my time spent in dingy clubs playing to nobody. My favorite memory from that time was giving back the $3 the club owner had just "paid" our band for a night's performance. "You probably need this more than me," I said. Funny thing about touring, the worst times are the ones you keep talking about.

A couple of the dead on statements from the tour diary:

The “circle of fear” is the area right in front of the stage that almost always stays empty.

Out on the road, “tour lobotomy” usually sets in at about two weeks.

Every night, the moment of truth arrives at Song Number Five.

Every band always sounds better from the parking lot outside (which we noted during loadout while the atrocious headlining band played).
posted by fletchmuy at 9:13 AM on August 21, 2003

Cheese Chronicles by Tommy Womack of Kentucky roots punkers Government Cheese is an excellent tome is this genre, too.

He's even thanked for it live on stage by Jason Ringenberg on Jason & The Scorchers on their superlative live album.
posted by jonmc at 9:29 AM on August 21, 2003

TAB is most definitely a non-existent band. But the author, David Menconi, has been covering music for the Raleigh daily for years and obviously absorbed enough to write a convincing account. Also, "Off the Record" was published through iUniverse as a print-on-demand book, with the Web site conceived as a way to help self-market the thing. His Inkwell.vue interview is worth a read.
posted by mediareport at 11:02 AM on August 21, 2003

Hint to the Web designer: it's not real easy to read black text on a black background. Sheesh.
posted by kindall at 11:08 AM on August 21, 2003

Seriously, is the black-on-black thing some kind of joke? Or is it actually readable on some people's browsers? I had to select the text to read it.
posted by RustyBrooks at 12:13 PM on August 21, 2003

Yow. Text is white for me in IE but black in Mozilla.
posted by mediareport at 3:00 PM on August 21, 2003

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