How it took me 47 blog entries to get to this is beyond me. In fact, come to think of it, how I’ve turned away from music-laden entries as much as I do is beyond me. Actually, how there are more than (maybe) three people who check this blog on a regular basis is beyond me.
But I digress. Anyways, “Live From Daryl’s House.” We haven’t discussed the Web-only music extravaganza yet, have we? I didn’t think so. Stupid me. I’ve been checking this thing for years now, and it isn’t until six months into this blog that I finally bring it up. Again. Stupid me.
The premise of the show is simple: Daryl Hall — of the quintessential blue-eyed soul group in the history of forever and ever, Hall & Oates — invites (sometimes) famous people to his house. And wouldn’t you know it — session musicians just happen to be chilling out with a truckload of guitars, keyboards, horns, drums and microphones. Collaborations ensue. Guests gush over Hall’s impeccable head of hair. And soul music lives to see another day.
OK. OK. All sarcasm aside, the show is great. It’s not good. It’s great. And he has managed to compile a wonderful balance of big names, not big names, and “oh, so that’s what they have been up to” names, as you may suspect. Honestly — where else could you find Dave Stewart, Mayer Hawthorne, Finger Eleven, Parachute, Toots And The Maytals, Gym Class Heroes, Booker T. Jones and Kevin Rudolf on a show’s history roster? That’s what I thought.
What’s most impressive is that it works (sans the awkward cooking section featuring the singer and whatever guest he happens to have drop by, of course). In fact, it works so much, that the show has been picked up by actual television stations and all you normal people who view TV in the conventional way will now have an opportunity to see it on cable television.
Why such a show matters to this particular blog is simple: He started the program in 2007. That’s 2,000. And 7. Or, as we may know it better as, almost five years ago. My God. Did the Interneteven exist back then? It did, and since the show’s inception, Hall’s managed almost 50 episodes, countless Web awards, a television syndication deal, many, many iTunes/Amazon sales and a boatload of credibility that a dude as cool (ironic or not) as him never even really needed in the first place.
The show has been a massive success. Why other artists haven’t taken a similar approach to selling themselves is something I’ve been wrestling with for years now. It’s a win/win situation for all involved. The venture can be profitable (who wouldn’t want to pay for a version of “Private Eyes” with Booker T. Jones playing the organ?) and it can keep the fading star of a yesteryear hit-maker shining for many nights to come. The fans win because we are treated to unique collaborations and the artists win because the cost to produce such a show is peanuts compared to everything that would have to go into a “normal” television production. Meshing music, television and the Interwebs. It’s genius, really.
But enough of me drooling over it. Go check it out yourself here (I recommend the Mayer Hawthorne episode because he really did put out the best soul record of the year so far). I mean, really. How could you not be intrigued?