Published on June 3rd, 2020 | by Darren Paltrowitz0
A Look at Eric Speck’s Excellent New Music-Centric Podcast, “Convince Me To Like This Band”
As a music obsessive for decades, I’ve been known to take music a little too seriously. By that, I mean that I tend to view entertainment as more than just entertainment. In turn, I can admit guilt when it comes to causing friction within friendships, relationships and workplaces as a results of criticizing the favorite artists of others. Jimmy Buffett probably being the most recent example of that.
Normally this is something that I would feel embarassed about, but when I heard of Eric Speck’s new podcast Convince Me To Like This Band, I had a change of heart. A sort of “a-ha” moment, where I realized that there were other people who were exactly doing what I have yet on a larger scale. Within Speck’s podcast — four episodes can currently be checked out via your major podcast provider of choice — “super fans” and “haters” explain why they feel the way they do about particular artists.
Already highlighted so far via Convince Me To Like This Band have been Slayer (defended by Mike Meyer who famously carved “Slayer” into his arms and then lit them on fire, as memoralized by the Slayer within album artwork), Phish (defended by Brian Bavosa, who has seen the band live 450+ times), Morrissey (defended by Jose Maldonado, who has not only seen Morrissey live 100+ times but also sung in a related tribute band) and Rush (defended by Jillian Maryonovich, a former aide to Barack Obama). Per the haters, one example is Les Savy Fav singer Tim Harrington, hilariously so.
Convince Me To Like This Band host Eric Speck is essentially a music business lifer. He was involved in A&R at labels like Island Def Jam and Warner Music Group, a label manager at Knitting Factory Records, a talent buyer at legendary but defunct New York City music venue Brownies, and owner of now-defunct indie-rock record label Ace Fu Records. These days, Speck currently works at Pandora Media and hosts the radio show Time To Be Useless — which streams on Radio Free Brooklyn and The Independent FM — beyond co-owning the rock bar Pet Shop in Jersey City, New Jersey.
I had the pleasure of speaking with Eric Speck via Zoom on June 2, 2020 but as luck would have it… The recording of that call did not come through. Entirely missing. Why? No idea. It’s (weirdly) happened a few times over the last two months and is very inconvenient, to say the very least. But what I can tell you is that Speck was nice as can be during our 15-minute chat, has plenty of great episodes in the works, and continues to keep busy with a variety of interesting projects. In lieu of the interview, below you’ll find embedded content related to Speck, Convince Me To Like This Band and the Pet Shop bar.