Tribute bands have been floating around for years now, doing everything from musicals, to sold out gigs, to festival slots. When your favourite bands and singers become too old, washed up or even dead to perform their own concert, a younger, better-looking version of them will appear out of nowhere and perform the greatest hits, instead of the newest album that you didn’t even know they had.
There is something special for everyone when seeing your favourite band/singer live, it’s an experience that cannot be replicated. Although some of the tribute bands that exist now are coming very close to it, ranging from Pink Floyd (Think Floyd), to Take That (Fake That) to Little Mix (Little Chix), they now have contemporary and historical pioneers of every genre. and although they’re not breaking the internet, they’re definitely here to stay.
The idea of tributes came in the media recently due to the passing of David Bowie, Lorde vs. Gaga hit the headlines in November 2016 when everyone compared the two tribute songs. Lorde, who Bowie himself described as ‘the future of music’ went for the more emotional song, covering ‘Life on Mars’ with the help of Bowie’s backing band, later on, Gaga did a long medley whilst trying to sell Intel, a laptop company. Decide for yourself.
The singer from The Total Stone Roses and Definitely Oasis described it as a ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t scenario,’ as tribute bands can only peak at a certain level of fame. He went on to say ‘when people are paying to see a band they’re more likely to pay £10 to hear their favourite songs played by a tribute band than pay a fiver to hear some unsigned band play songs they have never heard before, which is a great shame.’
So, are tribute bands doing well? At the moment. But the tribute bands change like the wind, The Total Stone Roses expressed how ‘when The Stone Roses decided to reform back in 2014, [their tribute band] got a large rise in sales and even sold out a whole tour from it.’
Whether you’re a bagpiper for The Red Hot Chili Pipers or the drummer for The Smyths, however large your fame rises, it will never match up to what the band you’re impersonating had gone through, it is definitely a bittersweet sensation for most. With musicians competing in battles such as the charts and music award shows – which shows no recognition for tributes, it makes it hard for these bands to live their true potential. But for most people, it is a bit of fun and you can’t go wrong seeing a Stone Roses tribute band, because even if ends up being a fat man in a bomber jacket, if you get pissed enough it’ll be Ian Brown in your eyes.