Monday, October 09, 2006

Wal-Mart? Really?


I didn't even call the Replacements sell-outs based on All Shook Down. But this? Well...sigh.

9 Comment(s):

At 3:32 PM, Blogger Stefan said...

Aw, c'mon, he's selling cheap guitars. What are the downsides to getting electric guitars into as many hands as possible?

Let it be.

At 3:58 PM, Anonymous Bill said...

Plus, Target is based in Minneapolis.

At 8:16 AM, Anonymous Ryan said...

I'm with you. "The High COst of Low Price" is a great documentary for those not in-the-know about the reality of Walmart. And as for doing crappy signature series guitars, why would you want to put your name on something associated with the opposite of quality. Its the textbook definition of "selling-out" really, I looked it up. Paul Westerberg is in the dictionary now. Just look up:

tragic. adj. see Paul Westerberg

At 4:01 PM, Blogger Stefan said...

Look, I'm all with you on the Wal-Mart thing. You have no idea how much I agree.

But that's irrelevant here as the guitar is not a Wal-Mart exclusive guitar. It's being sold at Amazon as well.

I am well aware of the broader policy and political implications of where things are made and sold (and attempt to do my own purchasing accordingly), but that's entirely different from calling Westerberg a "sell-out" for attaching his name to a guitar that he actually used on tour.

At 4:57 PM, Anonymous Bill said...

Not that this should really be the place (and I'm sorry I opened the box), but a fairly straightforward dialogue:

Q. Hey, I'm psyched about making a bunch of money from endorsing this guitar. Will it be sold at Wal-Mart?

A. Yep.

Q. No thanks.

At 7:30 PM, Blogger Stefan said...

A. OK, call John and John because their CDs (including obscure ones like "They Got Lost") are being sold at Walmart, too. No new album for them.

I'd probably respond the same way you have above, but the guitar is not a Walmart exclusive, so I guess I don't share the concern.

There's a broader discussion on the issue of "sell-out" that might be worth having as it pertains to kids' artists (how do you feel about Gwendolyn letting her song "Little Monkey" being used in a very un-kid-friendly scene), but I think you've used "sell-out" incorrectly here.

Don't apologize for the discussion -- it's been fun. At the very least, somebody will see the comment total and feel like they need to see the discussion. ;-)

At 7:50 PM, Anonymous Bill said...

Well, I think it's a tad different, since it appears (from the story) that Wal-Mart is the primary outlet for the guitar, while TMBG...not so much. Additionally, this isn't Westerberg's music (i.e., his core product) being sold, it's his name being slapped on a cheap guitar, albeit a cheap guitar he's played and apparently bought at Wal-Mart. I generally like artists doing anything they can to get more exposure, which is why I don't think TMBG's Dunkin Donuts ads are bad (plus they're hilarious).

(I also didn't quite call Westerberg a sell-out. But I do think it's closer than going on a major label.)

Anyway -- off to teach.

At 11:22 PM, Blogger Yosi said...

For what it's worth, TMBG's jingle ability (jinglblity?) was always spiked with savvy silliness if not sarcasm. I can't help but feel that the joke's on the corporate goons, while the checks accumulate at the bank.

You ought to see what Ween did when commissioned by Pizza Hut:
Expletives have been erased.

So, getting back to Paul Westerberg selling out. Look, we all want our rock heroes to stay true to the cause. What was that cause again? Oh, yeah rebellion...stickin' it to the man...(expletive removed). I'm not quite sure our rock heroes signed up to be model rebels. Perhaps, they just wanted to make some great music. Now, they might want, say, ...a better retirement plan.

At 11:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Paul Westerberg has created incredible music for years and made peanuts. Kiss me on the bus, Kids won't follow, Here comes a regular, Things, I could name a hundred songs that I should personally send him 50 bucks each for for all the parties, memories, make out sessions etc, a regular rotation in the soundtrack to my life that was spot on for so many moments. Don't get me started on live shows, 1984 at the backdoor theater at San Diego ST. up to
last springs at the Belly Up Tavern, incredible in every way.

Sooooo, he has a family now and has decided to be a dad and get some scratch together to take care of his own.
Good on ya Paul
p.s. I don't shop at Wal Mart


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