I was talking to a college kid, he said the late 90’s/early 2000’s were probably weird. He based it on this clip from the movie She’s All That.
So yeah, based just on this he was right.
We talked though. It was interesting to get his perspective on things. He said he didn’t really remember much before the year 2001. I don’t remember much before 1990. We are 11 years apart in age. It makes sense.
I went on a long rant in which I explained the positive nature of the 90’s, the optimism for the future, and the irrational fear of Y2K. It helped me understand “the youth.” It helped him pass time as he performed his work study job of renting out film equipment at his college.
I continued my work day.
As the hours passed the splinter got deeper, the little thought on my mind that maybe I had spoken out of my ass on the 90’s. The thought that the 90’s were nothing special, and I only remember them as being so because I was an optimistic young man living in the suburbs of a medium sized midwestern city and I didn’t know the reality of the world yet.
I started thinking about how many more records Sponge sold compared to Sunny Day Real Estate, and how anyone waxing nostalgic about 90’s music would go in depth to point out the importance of Sunny Day Real Estate while never mentioning The Flys, or Sponge, or any other crap L.A. band that sold millions of records and spent all their money on cocaine and impressing girls who were background actresses on Melrose Place, until they lost it all and had to manage a Guitar Center.
The truth is the truth.
According to the new truth, Wikipedia, Sunny Day real Estate’s Diary sold just over 231,000 copies. According to this article Sponge’s Rotting Pinata sold over 1 million copies.
Yeah, one was corporate rock and the other was released on sub pop, i get it, but the point is the point. In a capitalist world Sponge won. In our nostalgic 90’s hearts Sunny Day Real Estate won. So in the year 2016 who wins? Who we want to be the winner or who made the most money?
And there you go, what was the reality of the 90’s? Was it great? Was it optimistic? Do we remember it so fondly because we just really want to?
For every band barely scraping by, unwilling to bend on their artistic visions and values, that was inspired by Sunny Day Real Estate there is a band barely scraping by, trying their hardest to sell out as quickly as possible, who were inspired by Sponge. In a world where everyone is equal, one is not better than the other. However in the real world one is, and it is the band that was inspired by Sunny Day Real Estate. Because corporate sell out music is for douchey hashtag visionaries and scarf wearers.