Tours de Farce: Barbarians At The Turnstiles
Will the recent discovery of ancient Peruvian ticket outlets nestled high in the Andes Mountains help us better understand the routing for Dixie Chicks? Do cave drawings depicting prehistoric booking agents and promoters bashing each others heads in with wooden clubs uncannily predict the negotiating process needed to bring Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera to your city?
For almost as long as there have been service charges, man has studied the earliest history of this planet in hopes of better understanding the concert industry. From the Keith Richards dig at Stonehenge to the Mother Love Bone relics of Seattle, science has analyzed, mapped and catalogued artifacts dating back to a concert world long past, yet so similar to our own.
“There was a time when we believed that the concert industry began on the plains of Africa,” says world-renowned concertoligist Dr. Henry Jones, Jr. “However, the 1960s fossil discovery of Lucy, the earliest surfer girl of the primordial period known as the Malibu Era, not only changed the way we think about concerts, but also can be traced directly to the Wilsonian Era, which in turn gave rise to the modern Beach Boys that we know and love today.”
Amazing if true, and if not, even more amazing. In fact, the latest craze for today’s contemporary concert expert is to have his or her professional lineage traced back thousands of years. For example, many promoters, such as the ones who regularly present shows by major acts like the Tim McGraw and packages like Ozzfest 2003 , have paintings hanging in their offices comparing themselves to what their professional ancestors may have looked like thousands of years ago.
“Some of these paintings are amazingly accurate,” says Dr. Jones “Artist renditions of big, burly men and Amazonian women dressed in animal pelts. The razor sharp fangs protruding from their mouths, stone clubs by their sides, along with the booking agent scalps hanging from their belts and the wild-eyed look in their faces, would be enough to make anyone think twice before doublecrossing them.”
Stone clubs? Scalps? Fangs? If one is to believe the paintings, the concert professional has come a long way since prehistoric times.
“You bet they’ve come a long way,” answers Dr. Jones. “Now they use cell phones instead of clubs.”