Monday, June 30, 2008

Some marketing genius.

Aerosmith, love 'em or hate 'em, are one of the great bands in terms of marketing genius. Even when they decided to stop making good music, they still managed to sell even more records through the music itself - put their God-awful song in that God-awful movie armageddon, have it associated with Liv Tyler and Ben Affleck being in love, and bingo! Multi-platinum. All of a sudden, girls who never really cared for the band before were flocking in droves to the store to purchase their new sissy-rock albums. If you don't want to put the effort into being cool any more, become Bon Jovi and coast! It's brilliant.

Now, some new brilliance from Aerosmith, with their new video game Guitar Hero: Aerosmith. The kids have Guitar Hero III right now, and they love it. They've played it for hours and hours, day after day, and now when they ride in the car with me, they like to play a game where they guess the artist who's playing the song on my CD. And, for the most part, if that artist is in Guitar Hero, they're bang-on. Dead Kennedys. Beastie Boys. The Who. Rolling Stones. Pearl Jam. If they've heard it once, they know the band. It's amazing. And now, with an entire video game dedicated to just one band, these kids are guaranteed to grow up as monster Aerosmith fans. We picked up Guitar Hero: Aerosmith yesterday, and immediately the strains of "Livin' On The Edge" filled my house. Much to my chagrin.

I found myself wishing that another band, any other band, had gone ahead with this venture. Can you imagine a Guitar Hero: Zeppelin? Or Guitar Hero: Beatles? That's the way to shape quality musical taste early. At any rate though, there ARE songs done by bands other than Aerosmith on the game. Mott The Hoople's "All The Young Dudes", "All Day And All of the Night" by the Kinks, as well as tunes by The Black Crowes, The New York Dolls, The Cult and The Clash. So there is something to be said for that. And for the most part, the Aerosmith songs are GOOD Aerosmith, like Dream On and Rag Doll and Sweet Emotion, rather than Amazing or Crazy or I Don't Wanna Miss a Thing. So that's good too. But all in all, this is the way to make sure you have a massive audience well into the next thirty years. Way to go, Aerosmith - now, perhaps someone even better can take this idea and run with it. Pete Townshend...you paying attention here?

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