Interesting topic for this week. Fictional Bands. Are these made for TV bands that became great (The Monkees)? But, also the bands that released music, even though they are fake (yes, I think so). Or, is this an accounting of the greatest fictional bands, even if we never hear their music (maybe).
For instance, Stillwater was going to make the list for me (from the movie “Almost Famous”). We never hear them play (I can’t recall) and the narrative never tells us if they, as a band, go any farther. Off the list they go. Additionally, Wyld Stallyons will (according to “Bill and Ted”) save the world with their music. But, the world’s still going to Hell, so obviously they haven’t fulfilled their destiny. Who made it, well, on with the countdown:
3) The Commitments – The movie “The Commitments” follows the beginnings of the band of the same name. How they form, the troubles and tribulations they have, etc. The movie is very good (although you need an Irish to American English dictionary to get through all the slang). The music from the movie is incredible. The music was played by the actors (including the amazing vocals by then teenager Andrew Strong) and it’s a tape I wore out in high school (which is amazing since I was listening to pretty much 90% hair metal at the time).
2) Steel Dragon – The movie “Rockstar” is many things (most of which are AWESOME) but, for me, the best thing about it…the music of Steel Dragon. Steel Dragon is the prototypical 80s Hair Metal group – loud guitar, lyrics that make no sense and giant sets with pyro at the concerts. They are always in excess. The soundtrack to this movie contained a handful of Steel Dragon songs (all from the movie) that all found a permanent home on my iPod. Musically, I never evolved from the 80s, and Steel Dragon fits in perfectly.
3) Bruno – Technically not a band, but a one man wonder. A dynamo. A gift to Rock. Bruno was a 60s rock icon who influenced a generation. It has been said that if it wasn’t for Bruno, the Beatles would never have existed (honest, one of the Beatles proclaims that in the mockumentary “Return of Bruno”).
Bruno was really the blues-influenced alter ego of the greatest actor the world has ever known – Bruce Willis. Launching his singing career (short lived, unfortunately) with back story (as any great actor would), Bruce took to the stage and covered classics (and even had a Top 40 hit with “Respect Yourself”).
I’ve only seen the mockumentary once (perhaps Bruno burned the master copy after it was released so he could go back into hiding?); but I had the tape (and the follow-up CD – yes, I was the ONE person who bought Bruce Willis’s SECOND CD) and I played it til it busted. It was rock-y, blues-y and Bruce-y. What could be better?
CRAP! I just realized that Eddie and the Cruisers didn’t make my list (the music was all played by John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band). NO NO NO! I have to amend. Wait, I’ll just add them at the end. The Dark Side’s Coming! This group is so awesome I still get chills thinking about the end of “Eddie and the Cruisers II” when the new band is playing and Michael Pare declares “…and I’m…I’m Eddie Wilson.” Legendary.