Dick Valentine brought live music back. Better.

Everybody talks about missing sports and live music, but nobody does anything about it.

Nobody, that is, except people like Dick Valentine. While artists, audiences, patrons, and even critics haven’t really done much about missing a few of our favorite things, Dick Valentine and his band Electric Six have kept busy in the brave new world of live streaming events.

To date, Electric Six has done a few live shows without an audience and streamed them online. Dick Valentine has done over 50 solo shows via StageIt. His shows have varied in length, often been topical, and always a lot of fun.

Dick Valentine’s StageIt shows are FUN!

One of the fun things about StageIt shows is that they are never recorded and always live. There’s no sharing or watching later, so you gotta be there. It all adds to the excitement and fun, and there are a lot of “you shoulda been there!” moments.

When you attend a StageIt show, there is a window where you can clap and sing and chat with your friends, which also helps to give the feel of a live show. All of the audience participation is silent, so have no fear you strong, silent types.

Valentine, an accomplished acoustic troubadour and author, puts on shows that are just him and a guitar. There are no smoke machines, no spandex, and no legalized dope of any strain. What you do in the privacy of your own home remains your business, (at least for now), but two good things to do at home are watch March Madness and watch March Madness!

March Madness + Music = Bliss!

Valentine’s latest project on StageIt is a marriage made in heaven. In what is surely the greatest eureka moment anyone has had thus far in 2021, Dick has been playing live shows that pit his songs against each other.

It’s done in tournament style, with 64 of his songs entering his version of the hugely popular NCAA’s March Madness. There’s a bracket, of course, and all songs are seeded.

Instead of basketball games being played, songs are voted on by people who attend Dick Valentine’s StageIt shows. The song with the most votes moves on, and the “loser” is put back into Valentine’s mind, or wherever maestro Dick keeps his masterpieces.

Here’s the lineup from a recent day of competition:

1. Jimmy Carter vs. 8. Arrive Alive
4. Alone w/Your Body vs. 5. Vengeance and Fashion
3. Why You Waging War on Me, Divider? vs. 11. Skin Caboose
2. Destroy the Children vs. 7. The Band in Hell

It’s still rather early in the tournament as I write this, but so far there have already “games” so close that “overtimes” have been needed to determine which song moves on. the excitement is there, the excitement is palpable, and it the excitement building.

Get up off of that thing, dance and you’ll feel better

How Dick Valentine has chosen to deal with the lockdown and his livelihood being threatened is to be applauded and duplicated. It also reminds me of some wonderful old Paul Weller lyrics:

You don’t have to take this crap
You don’t have to sit back and relax
You can actually try changing it

Just one more thing

So now that Dick Valentine has brought back live music almost single-handedly, I really only have one question: has anybody sorted out how we bring back office pools in the age of working remotely? (Asking for a friend).

Update: 2022 Bracket

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