Brand Like A Rock Star continues to get amazing reviews! Click here to get it in paperback or Kindle right away. And don’t forget to download the FREE ebook Musical Companion that serves as a chapter-by-chapter playlist to help you get the most from the book.
This Friday (November 11, 2011) the original and still-legendary line up of Black Sabbath will reunite for a press conference at the LA nightclub Wiskey-A-Go-Go, the same place where they made their North American debut exactly 41 years earlier.
Rumors are circulating that the band will announce that they are reuniting to work on a new album.
I sure hope not.
Let’s look at the track record of legendary classic rock bands and their newer material.
THE OVERWHELMING EVIDENCE AGAINST BLACK SABBATH
Quick… how many Rolling Stones songs can you name from the past twenty years? Even for deep Stones fans, there isn’t a lot of newer music in the Rolling Stones catalog that immediately jumps to mind. The Rolling Stones aren’t stupid. They get it. That’s why since 1990 they’ve released six live albums, five compilation albums, and one re-issued album. They will reissue the classic Some Girls on November 21, bringing the total of “old material made new” to 13 albums. In that same window, they’ve only recorded three albums of new material.
The Cars reunited this year for the positively-reviewed but low-selling Move Like This album. Despite being the only new material from the band in 25 years, apparently fans would still rather hear “My Best Friend’s Girl” and “Shake It Up”.
It isn’t because their new music isn’t good (some of it is quiet strong). The problem is that the bar is set so high for these legendary bands.
How can The Eagles ever replicate Hotel California? Even if they can replicate it musically, it is impossible to recapture the magic of the era and the impact the song had on people growing up in 1976.
The Stones know that they could never record an album as successful as Some Girls was. So instead, they are wisely rereleasing a new version of the album.
Even U2, continuing to release quality material, are overshadowed by their own incredible legacy.
NEW MUSIC CAN NEVER HAVE THE SAME IMPACT
Thanks to their historic success years ago, these bands have become so known for their classic songs that equally-strong new songs will never have the same impact.
As a business, hopefully you are known for something. Ideally it is something very strong, like the early hits by these classic bands.
Smart brands embrace their reputation.
GIVE THEM MORE OF WHAT THEY WANT FROM YOU
For a restaurant famous for massive thick hamburgers, the best path to future success is to eliminate the pizza and chicken from the menu. Stop trying to diversify, and instead focus on what people know you for and love you for.
For a contractor well-known for building upscale luxury homes, the best path to future success is to drop any business than isn’t upscale luxury homes. Focus on what people know and love you for.
And for Black Sabbath, famous for classic rock songs like “Iron Man”, “Sweet Leaf”, and “Paranoid”, the best path to profits is to reunite and tour the world playing those same classic songs. A new album will only dilute their legendary status as the pioneers of heavy metal music.