Question for big Black Crowes fans

Teleking

Supporting Member
Messages
2,845
I keep listening to this band over and over and I'm always floored by the talent, and their ability to consistently write great songs and albums.

My question is, had the Black Crowes been born in the mid 60s, do you think they would've been as big as the Stones, the Who and Beatles?

If the Crowes were given the same support, promotion, opportunities, and eager listening audience, would they have been as big?

I'm going to guess yes. I think their albums, as a collection, are stronger than the Stones and the Who, and I love the Stones and the Who. Doubt they'd be as big as the Beatles.

I think they have the material for iconic songs as well. None ever reached the heights of these bands, but I also think the difference in listening audience, and support those three were given compared to the Crowes is vastly different. If the Crowes were pushed as hard via radio and TV I believe they might've been as big as the Stones and the Who.

Discuss...

And I think it's important for anyone responding to own at least 5 Crowes albums. I don't think it's something you can really make an educated comment on unless you own a lot of the Crowes' material. Afterall, how can you comment on someone's material versus another's if you don't know both really well?

Don't want to start a bitchfest, just curious to see what other big Crowes fans think on this subject.
 

traviswalk

In the Great State
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
13,655
That's a very interesting question, the Crowes are one of my all time favorites. While I don't think they would have been as big as the Stones or the Who in terms of radio play and public awareness, I do think if they launched in earlier decades they would be on the level of an Allman Brothers or Skynyrd who has a larger loyal base that would support them touring for decades and decades.

That said, I don't think they are too far off of that because if those guys got back together today and did a summer amphitheater tour I think they would do very well.
 

27sauce

Member
Messages
35,274
I keep listening to this band over and over and I'm always floored by the talent, and their ability to consistently write great songs and albums.

My question is, had the Black Crowes been born in the mid 60s, do you think they would've been as big as the Stones, the Who and Beatles?

If the Crowes were given the same support, promotion, opportunities, and eager listening audience, would they have been as big?

I'm going to guess yes. I think their albums, as a collection, are stronger than the Stones and the Who, and I love the Stones and the Who. Doubt they'd be as big as the Beatles.

I think they have the material for iconic songs as well. None ever reached the heights of these bands, but I also think the difference in listening audience, and support those three were given compared to the Crowes is vastly different. If the Crowes were pushed as hard via radio and TV I believe they might've been as big as the Stones and the Who.

Discuss...

And I think it's important for anyone responding to own at least 5 Crowes albums. I don't think it's something you can really make an educated comment on unless you own a lot of the Crowes' material. Afterall, how can you comment on someone's material versus another's if you don't know both really well?

Don't want to start a bitchfest, just curious to see what other big Crowes fans think on this subject.
I'm a fan, but thats crazy.
 

therhodeo

Member
Messages
9,882
All of this is assuming that they had it to become what they are without the shoulders of people like the Stones or Zeppelin to stand on.
 

fetchmybeer

Member
Messages
1,514
It's kind of hard to transplant them into the 60s since they were influenced heavily by some of those same bands, especially the Stones.
 

gtraddict

Member
Messages
1,886
I dont think they would have stuck out as much that is for certain,
during the mid 60's lot of rock bands with bits of others things starting to be mixed in
 

27sauce

Member
Messages
35,274
If they were around in the 60's they would be ripping off Glenn Miller and Count Bassie
 

zep41

Member
Messages
3,062
Absolutely yes. They would have been in the same category the ABB or Skynyrd in terms of success.

Although, it is tough to say exactly what they would sound like in that era -- keep in mind that their inital sound was based on a cool blend of Faces/Stones/Humble Pie/Zeppelin/Allmans.
 

Bluesman79

Supporting Member
Messages
849
Very tough question to answer. Like people have pointed out, they were heavily influenced by many artists from the 60's. Having said that, Southern is still one of my favourite albums and to me, they're one of the best bands ever, (with Marc Ford in the lineup of course).
 

teleking36

Supporting Member
Messages
3,892
One of my favorite all-time bands without question. Loads of talent, rock-solid duo songwriting (Chris's lyrical abilities aren't fantastic, but he makes up for it with ridiculous vocal talent), amazing musicianship. Marc Ford and Rich Robinson are two of my biggest guitarist influences to date.

I think owning their first three albums are an absolutely must if you're into rock music. They've got material on those albums that I haven't really heard another band of their ilk be able to top in 20 years, based purely on that sound. To me, they've become a benchmark band in a sense; they're one of those bands that now are constantly used as a reference tool for rock acts, and more often than not they're cited as influences for many artists across a number of genres.

Rich Robinson has almost single-handed kept rhythm guitar playing 'cool', just as Keef did with the Stones. He's pretty much the first guy I think of besides Keef when it comes to rhythm guitar. Maybe him and Malcolm Young. That's it.

While I think their later albums didn't have the attitude and delivery of their early stuff, they've been able to adjust their approach to songwriting and deliver amazing material on a whole different level, specifically with their last two albums. I think 'Before the Frost...Until the Freeze' is a stand-out record for a band that has been pigeonholed into one sound for two decades. These guys have aged like a fine wine. I will forever be a fan. My only gripe is that I was too young to be able to really enjoy them in their heyday. I would've LOVED to have gone to any show during the Southern Harmony or Amorica days. Good god. And that's coming from a guy who's seen them over a dozen times in the last 8 years.
 
Messages
431
If they were around in the 60's they would be ripping off Glenn Miller and Count Bassie
obviously not a big fan though.....

I do think their body of work - as a whole - is stronger than The Who's. Consistently excellent work, carried on for 20 year period and now off in different directions.

The time context is a rubbish argument - like saying Jay Z will never be as big as NWA because he came after....

No group past 1980 will ever be as big as the 60s and 70s bands. Look what happened to TV audience figures over that period.
 

SW33THAND5

Member
Messages
5,082
i think that they would have been a lot bigger...

i think that...

1st album.... solid work throughout.
2nd album (southern harmosy) masterpiece! i will set this up against any and all great rock and roll albums
3rd album (amorica) masterpiece! great follow-up! every song solid
4th album (3 snakes) great album... high points.... under a mountain, black friday, black berry, others. some less than great stuff too. but a really good album


after that? i find them very hit and miss and have lost interest. they are still fantastic live.

they should have never let marc ford leave. it was their golden era (in my opinion) much like the rolling stones mick taylor era
 

woof*

Member
Messages
7,456
Nah
They would only have been in the majors like the Stones if they had been from England.
 

TimH

Supporting Member
Messages
5,951
if they'd been out in the time of Stones/Beatles Mark Ford wouldn't have had the shoulders of Page/Clapton/Hendrix/Beck's perfection to stand on and learn from. I think those players were innovators and pioneers while Ford, while VERY good, is not. He needed those guys to come first.
 

Marty DiBergi

Supporting Member
Messages
926
The Crowes mean a lot to me on so many levels.

I think the OPs question is difficult to answer, in part because as others have mentioned they have a rock style (to be specific) based upon bands that influenced them that would otherwise be contemporaries.

The metaphysical nature of the question is boggling. One might as well ask whether the Beatles would have been as successful now or whether my life would be different if I had been born in Poland, etc., etc.

Outside of the rock sound, they are heavily influenced by country, blues, bluegrass, etc. artists that I would never have heard of if it weren't for them.

Part of the Crowes package is the traditionalist and revivalist nature... to take that out of the equation results in the birth of a different child.

Also, as mentioned previously, they were playing rock during a period of time when there was little "good" rock music being played/performed (IMO as I am limited by my own knowledge and experience). I would not want to remove that from the equation either.

Finally, and I think the most important, is the fact that the Crowes are and have been one of the greatest TOURING bands of my time. As I have seen the environment of live music shift to epic and expensive world tours or bundled music festivals or album release promotions, the Crowes are one of the few bands that still decides to go out and hit clubs and smaller venues just for the kicks of playing live. They don't need a new album to go on tour. They do it just to play. They have a loyal fan base that knows they are in for a good time and a good show whenever they are in town. While I have never followed DMB or Phish or the Dead for that matter, the Crowes are to me what those bands are to others. If the Crowes are in town, I go to the show.

I could go on and on. Yes, the common feeling is that TSHAMC and/or Amorica are the high water mark(s) for the band, but I have gotten something out of every album and every show. From the face-punch rock of By Your Side to the pyschedelic trip of Lions to the barnyard stomp of Warpaint or Before the Frost/Until the Freeze I feel like I get everything that they have done has been done with purpose.

I guess I cannot answer the original question as posed, but I can say that I am extremely grateful that they are a contemporary band for ME. I missed the Zeppelin boat. I missed the Who boat. I missed the Stones boat, despite the fact that they are still kicking. What I did not miss is getting able to see one of my favorite bands over the course of their musical life for a reasonable $30 - $40 admission fee.
 




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