Support Local Journalism. Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club.


Wake up to good music, or forever lament its passing.

Cleveland has a history of feverishly embracing things outside the mainstream. Consider that Roxy Music's first gig in the U.S. was in our fine city. Even in the halcyon punk-alt-indie-rock action of the late '80s and '90s, there were still plenty of sold-out gigs from bands that never enjoyed mainstream radio play or spots on MTV.

There's a bigger problem in Cleveland than brain drain: I call it taste chaste. I'm talking about every one of you who helped Live sell out the House of Blues, while the Buzzcocks -- who've made a far greater contribution to rock history -- played the smaller room. I'm talking about people who support the vanilla mooing of millionaire hacks like Three Doors Down and Nickelback. How does it feel to know that your parents (or grandparents) were more open-minded than you?

Hey, all you too-cool-for-school hipsters: Sonic Youth, Flaming Lips, Death Cab for Cutie, and Secret Machines appeared on the recent Kuyahoga fest bill, and the place was nowhere near capacity. Where the fuck were you? Did you pay more money to piss off to Chicago to see the same bands at Lollapalooza that weekend? Was that "cooler" than fostering a strong music community in your own backyard?

Cleveland, we gotta open our minds and ears, and be willing to drag ourselves to work tired more often. We're smarter than the corporations selling us Creed spinoffs and wheezy reunions, and we're just as passionate about music as the undergrounds of New York, Chicago, and L.A. When gas goes to $6 a gallon and the great shows dry up because nobody supported them, you're gonna feel like a pinhead, trying to rationalize the "merits" of Maroon 5.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Speaking of Shorts

More by Jon Stitch

Read the Digital Print Issue

December 1, 2021

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


Staff Pick Events

  • Open Turntable Tuesday @ The Winchester

    • Tuesdays
  • Ryan Sickler @ Hilarities Comedy Club

    • Thu., Dec. 9
  • Sebastian Maniscalco @ Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse

    • Thu., Dec. 9

© 2021 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.

Website powered by Foundation