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Old Feb 14, 2010, 01:07 PM   #1
Elephantshampoo
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Default The 5 unwritten rules for a band to be considered a superband

The term supergroup often denotes one populated exclusively with stars. What I'm getting at is another term/meaning. Queen a superband, Stones, Who, Beatles of cource & a few others. To achieve this title, what 5 things must a group pull off?

1st off,( not necessarily in this order), I'd say they have to have at least 3-4 alltime great albums, that thins the field out rather quickly. Zep, Queen make the grade.

2nd, being a "great" live spectacle or show. Boston a platinum level band, but a yawn level "live" act. I like Boston, please don't take offense to that. I've seen them twice. They don't compare to the Van Halen's & Whos of the world as a "live" act. Just a fact.

3rd. They have to have personalities. Otherwise known as stage presence etc. Ozzy, Nuge, Mick Jagger et all fit the bill.

4. Hits, when I say hits, one must remember there are different types of hits. Many top 40 hits become yesterdays forgotten memory. An FM hit that gets played again & again is arguably the better one for a group to get. Isn't a top 20 smash, but it stays in the public consciousness longer. Slow Ride, Baby I Love Your Way good examples.

5. Durability. Styx was a Platinum level band, Ramones never were, but Ramones are talked about today more than Styx are. Heart has durability. Billy Idol doesn't.



What are your 5 rules? & who would be on your list?

I would have Queen, Beatles, Stones, Zep, Who, Sabs, Floyd, & U2 off the top of my head. maybe The Doors. I wouldn't have ELO, Chicago, Bad Company or Boston on the list. Purple a maybe. Scorpions & VH & Priest & I suppose Aerosmith would make it. Kiss not. Although Destroyer & 1st live record pretty good, but they don't have 3-4 classic studio albums. Skynyrd almost, 3-4 good records, but I wouldn't consider them a premier live act.

Santana, Eagles & Fleetwood Mac I dunno. Better for someone else to comment on. Kinks?

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Old Feb 14, 2010, 02:06 PM   #2
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Well, glad I was able to bore everyone with this.

AC/DC is huge, has been for years, a bit too samey to be in league with the Zeps & Queens of the world. Hope I don't catch flak for that.

Metallica? Certainly big enough, been round long enough. Are they an alltime classic rock band? I dunno. time will tell.

Another unwritten rule is influencing other bands, or scenes.
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Old Feb 14, 2010, 03:35 PM   #3
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The bands I missed, Rush, Yes & Tull. Rush makes the cut methinks, 3-4 good records. longevity, good live band, much development, influenced many modern Prog bands. Tull? Has anyone seen em live? Ian Anerson quite a character I suppose. Yes has some of the qualifications, longevity, some hits, influenced many artists. But no prominent personalities.

Another possible measure/rule could be having gone through some stages of development. The Who & Stones certainly went through different stages & eras musically. Beatles obviously.


P.S. Forgot Alice Cooper. That was the band name originally. Great show, huge persona, plenty hits, longevity & a successful morph from the band format to solo. Only Women Bleed showed his songwriting skills and range. Even got an 80's hit with the song Poison.

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Old Feb 15, 2010, 12:35 PM   #4
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OK, a dud thread.

Some might consider The Greatful Dead, long history, few hits, but another rule of sorts might be.... covering a wide range of audience. In other words people of many facets of society being into said band. Dead had a cult audience, a very large one, but ones who leaned Hippie or leaned left the more substantial sector of their following I would venture to guess. So they wouldn't quite make my list.

What about ABBA then?
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Old Feb 21, 2010, 11:55 AM   #5
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Forgot The Beach Boys.
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Old Feb 21, 2010, 12:00 PM   #6
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I also think innovativeness is important. They've got to have their own sound.
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Old Feb 21, 2010, 02:29 PM   #7
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My five rules are John, Paul, George, Ringo, and George Martin!

Just kidding. Seriously, I think that innovation, reinvention, great songwriting, strong vocals, and chemistry (that is, how the group works together--how the "whole is greater than the sum of its parts") are the five aspects that absolutely have to be there.

All three of my favorite bands have that in spades--The Beatles, U2, and Yes (although with Yes it would be more true at some times in its rather wacky personnel history than at others).
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Old Feb 21, 2010, 07:48 PM   #8
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I forgot Lawrence Welk.
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Old Feb 22, 2010, 10:22 AM   #9
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Yes did comeback with a huge hit in 83, Owner of a Lonely Heart. The album it came from, 90125 sold 6 million units. Even Ozzy sang it's praises. http://www.associatedcontent.com/art...yes_90125.html

Tull had a couple 80's hits as well Lap of Luxury in 84, She was a Dancer in 88

They both had innovative styles. Tull was Folk-Prog.

Sabbath would never be considered during the 70's. Arguably the most hated band of that decade, them & Kiss. But they are celebrating 40 yrs now & invented metal. Neon Knights, Mob Rules were 80's hits, Time Machine was a 90's hit. Never Say Die single hit chart position # 23 in 78.

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Old Feb 22, 2010, 01:04 PM   #10
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Um, I guess my definition of a supergroup is different than yours. What you are saying are great (the best) groups. A supergroup to me is a group that is made of musicians that all had previous been with a group that was successful (i.e. Cream, Crosby Stills and Nash, The Traveling Wilburys, etc.)
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Old Feb 22, 2010, 05:29 PM   #11
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Yah, covered that on 1st post. The 2 different meanings & terms. Ozzy always dreamed of building such a band & used to stand on the side of the stage & watch Tommy Aldridge play & pegged him for the drum spot. he got his wish in 82 when Tommy joined his band, ( mainly cause he wanted to play with Randy).

Purple I would almost include, Ritchie did invent neoclassical guitar style, & Jon Lord was the real heavy rock Organ man. Svereal hits, Smoke on the Water, Strange Kind of Woman, Highway Star, Burn & Hush, but they began to split as early as 73 with Ian Gillan leaving, & by 75 Blackmore was gone, by 76 it was over. They reuinited in 84 with a splendid record, Perfect Strangers, but that was the only real high point. They carried on revolving members, but their heyday was early 70's. They were an archetype heavy rock band, but not quite a superband. But then I could be wrong.

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