Not Just Phony. Cacophony.

Story Sent in by Adam:

Renee and I were in the middle of our first date. We were at a local restaurant that had outdoor live music, and a three-member folk band was playing. They sounded good, and I knew that Renee liked folk music too, so I silently congratulated myself on picking a good first date venue.

We alternated talking and listening, and overall it was going well. Then, after the group finished one set, she excused herself from the table and approached them.

As I watched, she spoke to all three of them on the stage, they exchanged smiles and it looked as though they were all friends, talking shop. I figured that she was telling them that she liked their music, and I liked her all the more for standing up and doing so.

When she returned to the table, she said, "I told them that they played all of their songs wrong. I know the original tunes, and they played them all wrong."

"Are you serious?"

"I am. They might have you and everyone else here fooled, but not me. I know my music."

I suggested, "Maybe they're doing their own adaptations of it, on purpose."

She shook her head. "No. They're playing completely different songs, but calling them the same names. I told them to play them right."

I left it at that, and tried my best to make conversation on other topics. Soon enough, the band started up again, and I have to say, they sounded even better.

About one and a half songs in, Renee stood up and said, "I'm leaving. You coming?"

I said, "You want to go?"

She replied, "Not really, but if they keep" then raised her voice loud enough for most folks to hear, "butchering songs, then I don't have a choice, do I?"

I didn't say anything. I didn't really want to leave, and she must have read that in my face. She shrugged, said, "Fine. Sit here, clap, and enjoy fake music," threw a few bills down on the table, and walked off on her own. I remained there until the band completed their second set, and you know what? I thought they sounded great, and based on the applause, everyone else there did, too.


  1. That's really weird. Folk music is one of the most improvisational forms of music, with the exception of jazz. Most folk songs are so old and have been reworked so many times that in many cases nobody alive has any idea what the original arrangement sounded like. If she knew enough about folk to be familiar with different arrangements for the songs they were playing, she surely knew that too. So I have no idea what she was thinking.

    Even more baffling is why she thought coming off as a huge music snob would somehow impress you or anyone else. It is a mystery.

  2. Not to mention that song names can be reused.


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