Segarini: The DBAWIS Suggestion Box

We all know free advice is worth exactly what you pay for it. And whether or not we have any knowledge, talent, experience, or insight in regard to any particular subject, there isn’t one of us that doesn’t have an opinion…which is a straight line gateway to that intrusive, rarely-asked-for bit of chatter known as The Suggestion.

Why do we make them? What drives us to open our yaps and share our innermost feelings regarding someone else’s life/work/project? Human Nature, Bub…the need to fix stuff whether it needs fixing or not.

One of the reasons I’m not gainfully employed is because I cannot stop myself from making suggestions. It’s a sickness, like watching American Idol or Survivor, or somehow thinking a Court of Law is a Court of Justice. Like Justice, our suggestions are generally slapped aside by those who run things. People who run things are justifiably of the opinion that, because they run things, their way needs no outside help. After all, how did they come to run things in the first place? They must have done the right thing at every turn. A suggestion, in the minds of those who are Captains of Industry and Managers of Successful Businesses, are perceived as a lack of respect and awe as far as their achievements are concerned, and to some of them, any suggestion, benign or otherwise, is felt to be an out and out personal attack. Unless the bearer of a suggestion is a hand-wringing evil minion following a master-plan to usurp your power and set you up for a fall, he is probably just someone who loves whatever it is you do and wants to share his 2 cents, go on record, and maybe actually contribute to your success. Regardless, most people don’t care if you take their advice or implement their suggestions, they just need to make them. Suggestions are not threats. Suggestions are a person’s way of saying he cares.

With that in mind, I hereby offer my suggestions for making a few small parts of our daily existence a little better. They are completely personal and in no way are to be perceived as a threat, demand, or reflect negatively on the hard work of those in charge. They are merely suggestions made because…I care.

I have no doubt they will be ignored.

…and I’m good with that.

A FEW SUGGESTIONS

The Record Industry

You have a Website, right? Create an A&R webpage where you can post the promising demos you receive and ask for comments from the public. Offer the tracks for download at a very reasonable price, which you would split 50/50 with the artist. You engage your customers and show the artists you are helping them help themselves. Your customers will come back again and again in order to sample the latest demos, and artists will begin to submit better and better demos. Some demos may spread virally, and may lead to you signing a new act. Make the deals 50/50 just like the demo deal. You will attract artists that would otherwise ignore your label because of the lopsided deals they have seen you make over the years. You win back the trust of the artists and the public.

Release a track by your artists every 4 – 6 weeks. If one catches on, then consider a full CD.

Release a compilation CD of your most successful single tracks every 30 days for those who still cherish owning stuff.

New Bands

May I offer up some names for you to consider. Lately I see more and more bands with names that don’t make any sense to me. They are either nondescript, like Mudd, or The Bends, or so generic or common to something else, you would never find them even with mad Google skills. Bacon, and The Sun Also Rises come to mind.

The Chris Brown Smackdown

The Happy Killshot

The Texas Book Suppository

(Hope their CD’s called ‘Last Bullet to Clarksville’)

Auto Tuna

Katy Perry’s Panties

Desperate Mouse Knives

Sick Fuchs

The Testicle Drop

Morphine Milk

Nazi Jesus

Banana Fanna Rihanna

Dickie Dil and the D’ohs

Rabbi’s on Acid

Bobby Loves Whitney

The Muppet Pastors

The Fatal Pre-Natal

Nerds of Steel

The Muslim Hooters

Plush Toy Satan

The Crack Horse

The Spank Machine

Take what you want, leave a donation at the door.

Music Radio

If they want to, let the jocks who work for you have access to your entire library of songs and even bring some favourites you may be missing into the station. The ones who choose to do this can voice track a daily or weekly show that would run as an Internet only extension of your station’s format, only much deeper and with more talk about the music. Give your advertisers the option of also sponsoring these shows. Feature local artists where applicable…even faraway listeners want to hear what’s going on in your city/area…that’s part of the forgotten fun of listening to a radio station from somewhere other than where you are.

Over the air, have live jocks and a more eclectic playlist if you don’t already.

Introduce 5 second commercials or ‘Audio Logos’.

Talk Radio

Ask your callers what they want to discuss.

Please find topics of interest that aren’t Sports, Politics, or Gossip.

Live hosts over-night, talking, playing music, calling people in other parts of the country or even in other countries. Hire those capable of entertaining commentary and opinion on current events and culture without being told what to say.

Television

Okay…I would really, really, really, really, really love it if you actually took these suggestions to heart…but I won’t plotz (or be surprised) if you don’t.

Quit covering up the bottom 1/3 of the screen with promo hype for other shows. Show some respect for the show we’re trying to watch. Want to run promo’s? Run them during the commercial breaks or as plain old advertisements…that’s what they are. Quit clogging up the screen with information we don’t need, especially when they cover up the lady detective’s rack, or the dame at the bar’s gams.

Run episodic series episodes at the same time, on the same day, every week until the 6, 12, or 24 episode-long season is complete. Quit undermining the hard work of actors, writers, directors, and all the people who work so hard to entertain us. Look up the word ‘momentum’, learn its meaning, and pass this information on to your schedulers, bean-counters, and programmers. Hire someone to explain this information to your stockholders, CEOs, and Alien Overlords. What do you think the vast majority of us are paying for? Constant interruptions? Shows that move around so much we need a P.I to find them? Constant hiatuses, second and third ‘seasons’, postponed episodes, and cancelled shows we loved but couldn’t support because they were never where and when we expected them? We pay through the nose for access to these programs and sit through reams of advertisements during their broadcast as well. Because of that, none of us who have shifted our viewing of television shows to the Internet feel the least bit guilty for doing so. Even your limited ‘On Demand’ channels only offer limited episodes and for a limited time. Archive your shows…all of them. We’ll sit through a few commercials for the privilege. Otherwise, expect more of us to access our entertainments elsewhere.

When you do cancel an episodic television series with a plot arc that runs the length of the entire series…let them wrap it up before you kick them to the curb. Please. The last episode, the last scene of The Event was so great, I could hardly wait to see where they were going with it. I never will. None of us ever will. They turned that show into one of the most riveting sci-fi series in recent memory. Too bad they didn’t have a chance to see it through. On the other hand, Lost was a huge disappointment. At least we saw it end, but it was like paying $5000 for a hooker, waiting for 8 hours, and having Rosie O Donnell show up.

Put sports, awards shows, and any other ‘specials’ on your HD sub-carriers or separate channels. Monetize them or run commercials like your regular channel. More profit for you, happier customers to boot.

Movies

If you’re going to make superhero movies, stick with who and what they are. They have decades of history that include great stories you can adapt. Instead of changing them or rewriting their history, make up some original superhero’s of your own. Try and remember that all fans of these types of films aren’t tweens and teenagers.

Let me buy the movie I just saw on DVD/Blu Ray/Flash Drive in the lobby after the show, ditto soundtracks, T-Shirts, and other merchandise. Otherwise, you miss my impulse buy…and the Internet gets more traffic.

Please hire some actors and actresses that look like they are old enough to have graduated from high school.

The Harry Potter films matured along with their audience and for all time will have a place for new generations to enter that world and revisit it as they get older. Just sayin’.

Facebook People

Please quit asking everyone to click ‘like’, ‘share’, and ‘make this your status if you agree’. We can make up our own minds. If you really want people to like you, go buy a round for the house at your favourite bar.

Could you not add us to ‘Groups’ without asking first? It’s like being chloroformed, having a black bag placed over your head, and then driven to a party you don’t want to attend.

If you want to share something, please just put it in your status. Your friends will see it in the newsfeed. If you want someone to see something you think they might be interested in, send it in a private message instead of on their wall. Nobody likes to come home and find a stranger in their house…especially if they’re uninvited.

We all know about and abhor animal abuse, bullying, corruption, and other contemporary evils. You can stop thinking we don’t. Also, check the authenticity of the hellish photos and scary ‘news’ stories you disturbingly love to share with us. Many of them are fiction.

There are very few people unaware of You Tube or how to use it. True, we all love music and those who do love music are very familiar with the classic tracks everyone holds dear. With that in mind, please think twice before you post a video of Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, or any of the other extremely well known artists we’re all familiar with. Remember that anyone who loves these artists will probably already have seen, or know where to find, these videos. You can post them on your wall and they will show up in the newsfeed for all to see, but multiple posts, one after the other, of an artist we are all familiar with, seems a bit much. We are all looking for new music, obscure videos, and hoping to discover something we would love but have never seen before. The next time you would like to share your love of The Beatles music, (for example), try to Find something like this instead.

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So, those are a few suggestions. Please take them with a grain of salt. I don’t expect any of them to be adhered to, but I do feel better just being able to share them. As a reward for struggling through them, may I offer up some material I hope you find entertaining, amusing, or worthy of wasting a little more time with so you don’t have to go right back to work, or doing the dishes, or whatever you’re taking a break from.

BONUS!

The Oscars!!!

I cannot bring myself to watch ‘awards’ shows. For those of you who are like-minded, may I present the play-by-play Tweets of this year’s Oscar broadcast courtesy of The Funniest Man I Know; Ladies and Gentlemen…

ZONTAR’S OSCAR TWEETS!

Hey gang I will be live tweeting tonight’s Oscars from the parking lot of the Holy Chow at Jarvis and Dundas, don’t you dare miss it!

I’m in position in the parking lot of the Holy Chow at Dundas and Jarvis live tweeting the Oscars which I’m watching in a 1986 Dodge Caravan.

I’m wearing a 1988 vintage baby T from Club Monaco with a mustard stain over the left nipple shaped like the republic of Montenegro.

Glenn Close actually looks a lot like Pierre Pettigrew in a wind storm.

The Academy should strip Kevin Costner of his Oscar for Dances with Wolves for letting Whitney Houston die on his watch.

This is the part of the Oscars nobody cares about and where I can tell you that I sincerely had no idea Morgan Freeman was black.

Wow, Martin Scorcese’s wife is like nine years old.

If Jonah Hill had played an assistant general manager of the Oakland A’s who had sex with Brad Pitt he totally would have won that.

Owen Wilson’s nose looks like a penis that got run over by a Ford Taurus.

Well that’s enough of this, the Adult Video Awards are giving out the lifetime achievement award (Golden Scrotum) on Showtime.

Thank you, Zontar

DOUBLE BONUS!!!

WARNING! Some men will not be able to see the sandwich. Watch in Fullscreen. Kate and Patty (Courtesy of the SOWNY Board)

I have never been as hungry as I am right now….

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Segarini’s column appears every Monday

Contact us at dbawis@rogers.com

Bob “The Iceman” Segarini was in the bands The Family Tree, Roxy, The Wackers, The Dudes, The Segarini Band, and Cats and Dogs, andnominated for a Juno for production in 1978. He also hosted “Late GreatMovies” on CITY TV, was a producer of Much Music, and an on-air personality on CHUM FM, Q107, SIRIUS Sat/Rad’s Iceberg 95, (now sadly gone), and now provides content for radiothatdoesntsuck.com with RadioZombie, The Iceage, and PsychShack. Along with the love of his life, Jade (Pie) Dunlop, (who hosts and writes “I’ve Heard That Song Before” on RTDS), continues to write, make music, and record.

5 Responses to “Segarini: The DBAWIS Suggestion Box”

  1. Rod Dysinger Says:

    Great column Bob! I’m not a fan of “Talk Radio”, but the listeners are usually drawn-in by the ENORMOUS ego of the host (in most cases), so they just listen to whatever the host decides to pontificate about.
    I like your idea about demos on the radio. Most radio stations are “so far out-of-touch” with their potential listeners…that they may never be able to get them back. The younger generation (yes, I feel old), has been raised with a completely different dynamic when it comes to how their entertainment is presented. MTV changed things forever (with the quick, senseless “cuts” in many videos). Younger people were raised to have shorter attention spans. They need instant gratification. They get bored because they can’t wait for a story/song to develop. It has to grab their attention NOW! This is especially apparent in today’s movies. Many are just long segments of “eye candy” and product placement…with plot/story taking a backseat to most other considerations.
    Many of my favorite TV shows (like “Firefly”) died a painful death due to the reasons you discussed. You can’t watch a show if you can’t find it! Cable TV has been gaining viewers over recent years with well-written series like “Breaking Bad” and “Justified”. (Maybe the major networks will open their eyes to what the public wants before they lose too much market share…maybe).
    Thanks for letting me rant,
    Rod Dysinger

  2. Loved the facebook rant! If the video is unique, or of there’s a special reason for posting it, fine. All too often it’s just a matter of them saying, “I love this song,”: and it clutters up my news feed so might miss something interesting.

  3. Left the television world two years ago. Haven’t looked back since. 🙂

  4. Bob have you checked out The Wrecking Crew film? please contact Denny. i have given him your name, being that you would be perfect to carry this flag. Thankyou

  5. Jim Chisholm in Campbell River Says:

    Damn! What the ____ who’s goddam brain took a shitter now. I’m gonna get up a break that >?!@)^&(#~*!!!!!!!!/( thing . . .
    You say it so much better Bob and I’m forever grateful.
    BONUSES are great!
    Thanks to the internet I can watch the great Smallville whenever I want and in episodic sequence.

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