The Slacker Factor ::: The Voice of Generation X: Podcasts, Blogs, World Domination

Lack of Teen Spirit, A Meandering Rant from TSF 6

Posted on February 22, 2010 | By Robert LaFrance | 4 Comments

The "Smells Like Teen Spirit" Single Artwork

Considering The Slacker Factor is a podcast and webspace targeted directly at Generation X, whose musical apex is squarely planted in early 90s grunge, what I’m about to say will no doubt offend some and may even be considered downright sacrilegious. So, let me just come right out and say it…

I never need to hear Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” again. That’s right, the GenX anthem that epitomizes all things slacker is not aging well in my eyes. In fact, the second I hear those opening power chords, I instinctually reach for the dial or digital preset button to find just about anything else (within reason, of course… I’m not about to choose any American Idol reject over the voice of our generation (I think, anyway).

It’s not really Kurt’s fault though. In 1991, when Nevermind was released unto the unsuspecting public, it was all I needed to puff out my chest and get all angsty. After all, this was the theme song to many a drunken slam dance, late night rally to plan our world domination, or solo introspective moment. But just three years later, after Kurt Cobain’s untimely death in 1994, the song sank into nostalgia. Hearing it then, we’d take a second to imagine what could of been, what still might be, and what contributions our generation was making (or not making) to the world. But now, it’s lost all that sense of nostalgia, emotional connection, and is just plain tired. Read more

TSF6: Pondering Nirvana. Now ONLINE!

Posted on February 20, 2010 | By Robert LaFrance | No Comments


The Slacker Factor Podcast, Episode 6:  Pondering Nirvana

Haunted by a love/hate relationship with the music of our past, Rob struggles in his quest not to achieve Nirvana. We are confused by guys/girls and the words around them in a discussion on gender speak. Finally, Chris attempts serenity with NPR’s top songs of the decade and breaks out cool/questionable jazz.

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Meandering Rant on the Lack of Teen Spirit by Rob

Book Report: Gender Speak

Music Segment: NPR’s 50 Most Important Recordings of the Decade

Why All New Music Sucks, a Meandering Rant from TSF3

Posted on December 9, 2009 | By Robert LaFrance | No Comments

Do we stop appreciating new music after a certain age? AKA Why does all new music suck?  Recently re-titled as “Has the now effortless pursuit of new music changed music’s value aka why new music is almost free!”

I long for new music.  I easily fall into the media hype of some groundbreaking young band and seek out any and all of their recordings.  I have been known to incessantly fight the busy signal of a radio station’s request line in order to ask the DJ the name of the song that was played exactly 27.5 minutes ago.  I’ve then called the foreign-based record label to find a local retailer that might actually carry said music.  In my eternal quest for the new and different, I’ve canvassed my hip friends for suggestions, begrudgingly tuned in local college radio, combed the billboard charts, made purchases based solely on the esoteric words of a music journalist, I’ve dragged my classy, sophisticated girlfriend (now wife) through the rough and tubmble streets of Greenwich Village, New York City to seek out musty old music shops that carry used records and spend hours flipping through bins of dusty vinyl – only with the promise of returning the favor by agreeing to window shop at Tiffany’s on 5th Avenue, subscribed to new music CD services (remember CMJ?), provided false names to both the Columbia and BMG music clubs… even purchased random CDs based solely on the cover art or some annoyingly pretentious record store clerk.

But, that was a long time ago and much has changed in my life…

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