Spectatorship, Part 1 | Katie Alice Greer

Text: Katie Alice Greer
Image: Matt Dunn
Issue: #2, Summer-Fall 2015. Editorial on Spectatorship.

“WE’RE VERY STRATEGIC IN HOW WE OPERATE AND CREATE”

Priests-BlackCat-2014-09-07-matt-dunn

When we started Priests we knew that we wanted things to be very thoughtful, very considered. It’s still important to us. We want to be expressive on stage, there is a lot of theatricality involved. People think “theater” and “performance” means “fake” or “made up” but I don’t think that’s true at all. At least, not in the sense that it means you’re lying. It’s just as “fake” or “made up” as a painting, I suppose. I don’t know why that’s of any lesser value or different than any other art.

 

We’re a small band right now but we think our music is for everybody. We’re pretty confident that we’re likeable, make good music, and could honestly appeal to a very wide range of people. That’s one reason we make pop music, pop means you’re appealing to the populace. Much about our band probably seems off-the-cuff but I’m telling you, we’re very strategic in how we operate and create. One condition for the shows we play is that it’s hosted in a space that is as accessible as possible. When a sponsored gig comes along, it’s considered just like any other. We ask: where is the money is coming from? Are we comfortable taking it? Most often, the answer to that question is “yes.” We’re not yet in a position to turn away money very often. We played a gig sponsored by a shoe company and took their banner off the stage before we performed. In the modern age, you’ve got a million cameras around all the time, a million opportunities for someone to film a guerilla-style accidental advertisement for “X Shoe Company, starring Priests,” just because they’ve filmed our show on their iPhone and we’re playing music in front of a corporation’s banner. No thanks. That costs extra.

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

 

Truly, no one invests in art anymore, besides corporate enterprises interested in capitalizing on an image. You need an image to sell things. Any business-minded person can tell you:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

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