Austin Music: 'Things Are Better Than They Have Ever Been!'

RECEIVED Mon., July 21, 2008

Dear Editor,
    Re: “Can the Bands Play On?” [News, July 18]: The Live Music Capital of the World is only a phrase. Let's not get carried away. That being said, Austin music isn't going anywhere. It's true Austin has changed, and will continue to change … and a musician will either adapt, or in time get a tidy job at a computer company.
    Will Wynn and his buddy like to get pictures taken, and that's lovely. But save the photo op for something that needs real attention. And instead of sending a donation to some bullshit website, music fans should show some cash love to any working band they see performing. The musicians will love it more than an online donation to someone else.
    For the next generation of Austin musicians, I sincerely believe things are better than they have ever been. An artist can record, produce, book tours … all on their own. Any musician who puts in the time will be able to stay afloat in this city no matter what changes. With thousands of people moving to this city, there will continue to be demand for music. By the way, Austin can be affordable if you look hard enough. (You won't get a place Downtown but you can survive.)
    This town has everything for musicians! Musicians' union (they do go to bat for you), a guitar society, CD duplication houses, studio spaces, symphonic ensembles, luthiers, the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, the SIMS Foundation, musical therapy, etc. Austin has the best of many worlds. As for venues … I seem to recall a list of several thousand bands performing here in the spring, so there's a stage here and there. Did Run-DMC ever ask Ed Koch to step in and help the rappers when times got hard? Did the Misfits? Nah … they made their own records, then sold them out of the trunks of their cars, played anywhere and everywhere they could. In the end, they made history.
    In closing, “I was obliged to be industrious, and whoever else is equally industrious shall succeed, equally well.” – J.S. Bach
Ravner Salinas
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