This Band Could Save Your Life, But Only If The Last Band That Saved Your Life Was Velvet Revolver

Jun 12th, 2007 // 11 Comments

uncrowneddd.jpgThe new issue of Spin features a lengthy profile of Uncrowned, a fair-to-middling guitar-rock band that spent the most recent SXSW trying to get anybody and everybody to listen to them. While at the festival, they met with the guy who wrote Hinder’s “Lips Of An Angel,” got mildly dissed by an A&R guy, and did whatever they can to get people to see shows:

Tonight, [the] strategy is to take Polaroids with potential fans and write the band’s show info on the back. Then the Polaroid can be used as a free ticket…

The group is suddenly confronted by one of the festival’s most familiar sights — a street teamer hawking free Trojans. A late-20s brunette wearing a tennis shirt and slacks, she hands out samples and enthusiastically asks, “Are you a band?” The guys nod, give a perfunctory run-through of the Polaroid routine, and are quickly back on the move. I think she really wanted to come to the show, I say to [Guitarist Jack Andrad]. Didn’t you think she was cute?

“I don’t do cute. I do hot,” he announces, grinning.

Don’t you wanna get any guys to come?

“I was always told that in order to be a rock star, you needed two things: The girls wanna have sex with you, and the guys wanna be you. If we get the girls, the guys will come.” Is that what you really think, or are you just bullshitting?

“That’s your job to figure out,” he replies, still grinning.

The story has a few other moments of such mild-jackassery, but it’s really about the music-industry middle class–those acts that have too much commercial potential to be satisfied in the indie-fame ghetto, but can’t get enough radio or label support to go multi-platinum. Judging by the band’s MySpace page, a song like “Devil In My Hand” could play alongside the likes of Hinder and Nickelback, and we’re guessing that someone, somewhere will eventually pick these guys up, if only because America’s gyms always need a new background-noise work-out jam.

The Art of Hustle []
Uncrowned [MySpace]

  1. Lucas Jensen

    Great point about this middle class…we get so many bands like this, and it’s not my thing, but I never really have any tips for them beyond, uh, touring, myspace, the usual. It’s harder for them than Joe Indie Band because they’re locked out of most press outlets. They NEED major labels or similar-minded indies. When I tell bands like this that they are “too commercial” for us they often get really excited!

  2. musicquizking

    Brian Howes, the guy who wrote “Lips of an Angel,” now has a label deal with Interscope so expect more AOR throwback bands in the next couple of years.

    Hopefully this band isn’t one of them.

  3. The Van Buren Boys

    “I don’t do cute. I do hot,” he announces, grinning.

    I thought you only got the right to be an insufferable asshole AFTER you become famous.

  4. natepatrin

    I’m torn: I fully support an internet-wide moratorium on the overuse and oversaturation of the word “douchebag”. On the other hand, I can’t figure out a term that describes sentiments like “I don’t do cute. I do hot” any better.

  5. NickEddy

    I got all freaked, meta-wise, thinking for a moment from the picture and caption that this was going to be about a Velvet Revolver tribute band.

    Their artistic statement would be a newsboy cap (rear of pic, blurred) rather than the traditional stovepipe.


    They let their rivals, Big Machines, rock the Slash lid. “That’s not us,” sniffs bassist Bobby Dee, whose cousin knows Gilby Clarke (“he’s heard of us and respects what we do.”)

  6. RepentTokyo

    that quote is awesome.

  7. Janelleyo

    @The Van Buren Boys:

    They’ve always had an air of confidence, shall we say. I’ve been friends with these guys from their previous band and on to now, so about 8 years. Wow, we’re all getting old. I love the point of this article. No matter how hard you work, and how hard you sell yourself (and they do it quite well) that doesn’t mean you just get it all handed to you. I love the guys, and their music has grown over the years, but never to my tastes. That said, the Hinder portion was misrepresented and the band found need to explain themselves on their MySpace, which I found funny – they actually retracted saying they hate Hinder while most of us are retracting any assemblance of LIKING Hinder et al. Go figure.

    Still, they are amazing guys, a fun band, and they are great drinking buddies! I love love love that article. So true. And to think – its from Spin.

  8. Janelleyo

    Oh – and the one thing I’ve told them since day one, the same as I told all the bands i managed into the ground (who failed miserably) is that you need the Label to need you more than you need them. They actually do take that to heart, but get shit on anonymously in spin by said labels :)

  9. Halfwit

    Hack alert:

    “A band that sells, say, 300,000 albums is negligibly profitable at best. The large-scale services a major offers — distribution, marketing, promotion — are more suited to pushing Justin Timberlake from two million to five million copies sold.”

    This sentiment (almost word for word) was expressed in the WSJ article about CYHSY last year. The numbers were smaller, but the idea that a label exists to build on existing success as opposed to creating success has been done, and done better.

    As for the article… for some reason, I kept subbing “Flickerstick” for “Uncrowned” (nice “band name as metaphor” pick by the author, though).

  10. Halfwit


    Re: Hack alert…

    withdrawn. Great article

  11. Plague

    Considering Brian Howe is writing songs for the new Puddle Of Mudd album, you won’t have to wait long…

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