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Stage Act vs Musicians Blog Home
Posted by Maroon the Shantyman
Dec. 18, 2007 07:54 AM  

Musicians and stage acts... Stage acts and musicians... the debate rages on... and where do the Bilge Pumps fall in these classifications?

We're that strange hybrid of musicians and a stage act. Most entertainment directors at festivals like to place us with the musicians because we're always playing music, but anyone who's seen our show can testify that what we do on stage can't always be classified as "music" and we're a much bigger, louder, goofier show than 99 percent of all ren faire musicians. That means a lot of musicians tend to frown upon us because we're so goofy and can be off-key and off-color. We're run across a few that think we're "ruining" Celtic and folk music with our antics. We don't pay much attention to them, though.

On the converse side, other stage acts tend to think we're weird because we're not really doing a scripted show, there are no Vaudeville overtones, and we're not gearing our entire show to getting tips from the audience. Just one song. yuk yuk.

I, personally, view us as a comedy stage act that happens to do a musical show. We're not musicians in the sense that we can function as background music while people eat and drink their food in peace. We demand your attention when we're on stage. We're whores that way. We put on a full, audience interaction show that gets laughs (most of the time) and can give you a full 30 minutes of fun for your buck (sometimes more)

However, festivals tend to lump entertainment into the categories of musicians and stage acts and ever since the Bilge Pumps have been in existence, we've been lumped into both, though never at the same time, thankfully. Ironically, we crave the perks that both categories receive, attention-starved bastards that we are. We want the big stage with lots of seating because we can draw a crowd and hold them there while we do our madness and we also want to hang with the other musical acts at the end of day pub sings at the festival so we can have fun and goober around with the people with actual musical talent.

Hmmm, I'm not sure what the point is of this rant today, but it was on my mind and I thought I'd write about it.

Because it's all for me blog. Me jolly jolly blog.
....Maroon



I think that last statement pretty much answers the question.....stage act!!

Although, I do have to admit, you guys do sing well. If you didn't, us fans wouldn't hang around as long as we do. And we wouldn't be buying your CD's just to hear off-tune singers.

So, I guess the debate is still on then.
Posted by TigerLady on Dec. 18, 2007 11:29 AM

Maroon, funny you mention the "ruining celtic music" argument. It seems that everyone who plays irish music these days gets grief over "not being irish enough" It is sheer stupidity on the part of these people. We all interpret the songs a little differently. I consider the Bilge Pumps to be a musical act, however that is because I listen to you guys from afar, which is to say I have never seen you play anywhere. Who cares if you aren't great musicians, I consider myself a musician of middling talent at best. I don't care. I am still going to play the music I love and have fun doing it. You wanna come along for the ride? Great. You don't like it... Well that is fine too. I sense that the Pumps pretty much have the same attitude. Just keep doing what you're doing and I will keep listening and hopefully make it to Texas or somewhere you guys are playing so I can see the show.
Posted by Matt Hughes on Dec. 18, 2007 05:04 PM

Mayhaps the other "musical acts" are merely jealous because they do not command a crowd's full attention? Seamus Kennedy tells jokes in between songs. How are the Rogues classified?
Posted by Messyn McCleavage on Dec. 18, 2007 10:14 PM

Even having senn you guys perfom and having some of your CD's I describe you guys as the funniest music act I have ever had the pleasure of watching. Your voices are great, the comedy is a much needed exspience. Listening to you all is great but watching is sooo much better.
Posted by BRANWEN BOIVIN on Dec. 19, 2007 04:35 AM

When trying to get you guys a gig in DK (yes I know I failed horribly) I classified you as a singing comedy show - that kind of says it all...
Posted by Angel on Dec. 19, 2007 12:51 PM

I thinking the singing is sometimes the funniest part of the show...at least when I was singing. I say who cares what you're classified as, as long as you're having fun helping other people have fun. I think anyone who hears the CD will always see the act as a band, and until they see the show they won't really see how much comedy there is. Either way musical comedy is how I usually described it to people.
Posted by Joshua Steinberg on Dec. 19, 2007 05:12 PM

Well ,
I can say that whatever the act , My Scallywag buddies tend to like your show , and This Scallywag likes sharing the stage with you . Keep it up .
Posted by Rich on Dec. 19, 2007 05:33 PM

If it makes you feel any better I never thought of you as a musical act. I can't explain why I own all your CDs?!?

LOVETHEPIRATES

Ella
Posted by Ella on Dec. 19, 2007 06:29 PM

I think that it is odd that the other acts think ya'll are weird for not doing a scripted show! We have been attending the LARF for the past 4 years and have heard the same acts do the same jokes, gags, songs, etc. for YEARS now, not just twice in the same day!!! That's what makes you guys great, we watched almost every show at the last weekend of the LARF and you guys didn't do the same set over and over, each show was different and more fun than the last!!
Posted by Zaphod Beeblebrox on Dec. 29, 2007 03:32 AM


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