The Wall Sreet Journal had a story last week about how hip-hop and R&B dominate the record business, but on the concert circuit, rock dominates.
Hip-hop and R&B, America’s most popular genre, accounts for 38% of U.S. on-demand audio streams, versus 20% for rock. But in the live-show realm, rock is thriving. When Billboard ranked last year’s 50 highest-earning music acts, using U.S. record sales, streaming, publishing, and concerts, there were three times as many rock acts as hip-hop ones. The reason: Touring accounted for nearly 80% of the 50 acts’ combined earnings, compared with 8% from on-demand streaming. In terms of concert-tour revenue, rock accounts for 55% of the $5 billion generated by last year’s top 100 highest-grossing tours worldwide, excluding nonmusic acts, compared with 11% for R&B and hip-hop.
The article mentioned several bands I had never heard of, so I thought I would periodically focus on some of these less well-known bands (at least to me) on Mondays, as part of my new Music Monday feature.
For the inaugural Music Monday, I decided to take a look at The Avett Brothers.
The Avett Brothers are an American folk rock band from Concord, North Carolina. The band is made up of two brothers, Scott Avett (banjo, lead vocals, guitar, piano, kick-drum) and Seth Avett (guitar, lead vocals, piano, hi-hat) along with Bob Crawford (double bass, electric bass, violin, backing vocals) and Joe Kwon (cello, backing vocals). Mike Marsh(drums) and Bonnie Avett-Rini (piano) are touring members of the band.
Following on from Seth and Scott’s former rock band Nemo, The Avett Brothers combine bluegrass, country, punk, pop melodies, folk, rock and roll, indie rock, honky tonk, and ragtime to produce a novel sound described by the San Francisco Chronicle as having the “heavy sadness of Townes Van Zandt, the light pop concision of Buddy Holly, the tuneful jangle of the Beatles, the raw energy of the Ramones .” (That’s quite a combination!)
At this point in time, the band has released nine studio albums and four live albums. Their latest studio album, True Sadness, was released on June 24, 2016, debuting at number 3 on the Billboard Top 200 and topping the U.S. Folk and U.S. Top Rock charts.
The band has had several TV appearances over the years, including Late Night with Conan O’Brien, Late Show with David Letterman, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.
The Avett Brothers have also been nominated three times for a Grammy Award and have won multiple Americana Music Awards.
Rolling Stone magazine did a profile of the band back in 2013, with a story titled, The Avett Brothers’ Long Road: The hard-won triumph of America’s biggest roots band.
And just this year, HBO premièred “May It Last,” a documentary, directed by Judd Apatow and Michael Bonfiglio, about the folk-rock band the Avett Brothers.
Clearly, this is no fly by night band. They have been around for several years, and have had great success. I’m disappointed that I’ve never heard of them, especially after watching a few of their music videos.
But I do know about them now, and I look forward to getting caught up with their older music and am excited to see what the future holds for them.
If you’ve never heard of them, here are a couple of videos that may capture your interest: