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Question…Friday?

Fri, Nov 13, 2009

Question Tuesday

Question…Friday?

After some technical difficulties getting home from Wrockstock, and a hard-hitting case of WSN1, I regret that I was unable to get to Question Tuesday until now.

Today’s question was inspired by Stine’s comment last week:
“I would definitely classify the AVPM soundtrack as wizard rock. It’s music, it’s awesome, and it’s about Harry Potter. Wizard rock.
That being said, though, I wouldn’t classify the StarKidPotter people as wizard rockers. AVPM was just one of their many projects, and nobody had expected it to take off like it did. AVPM is a play, written and performed by a theatre company, and what we call wizard rock is just the soundtrack. That’s what I think differentiates it from Lena’s wrock opera, which I’ve always seen as more of an ‘extended’ wizard rock song.”

So, what makes you a wizard rocker? Does this mean that Switchblade Kittens aren’t a wizard rock band? What if you have only written one song in your life, and it happens to be a wizard rock song?

I don’t claim to have answers to this (or even a solid opinion) – I just wanted to open it up to discussion.

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40 Comments For This Post

  1. somuchpotential Says:

    The Switchblade Kittens are probably a bad example as I believe they have released an all wrock album and so could easily be counted as wizard rockers despite most of their projects being muggle.

    I would say, for example, Hank Green who has many wrocker friends and has written quite a few Harry Potter songs to date could be called a part time wrocker? But someone who’s only ever written ONE song, probably shouldn’t be. (They may not even know about wizard rock, afterall.)

    Because a musical is so different from a band, I wouldn’t call StarKidPotter a wrocker, but if there was one wrock song released, I’d probably promptly switch my answer.

  2. Brad Ausrotas Says:

    It’s plain and simple (I’m joking, it’s so not): A band can claim to be a part of the Wizard Rock genre if they write songs about Harry Potter.

    A sufficient number of songs, however. A band has to be fairly consistent with their genre labelings, right? For example, for a band to be classified as a part of the ska and punk genres, it means that they have to have a sufficient number of both of those styles in their music, otherwise they don’t fit their genre.

    If you’re a rock band and you have one experimental electronic song on your entire album, does that make you a rock/electronica band? I don’t think so. If you only have two songs up, well that means that half of your music is electronica, doesn’t it? Thus the genre fits.

    So I would say that in order to be classified as a wizard rock band, a sufficient number of songs in your library must be of the wizard rock variety. Are the Switch Blade Kittens a wizard rock band? No, they wrote one song. They’re no more of a wizard rock band than Led Zeppelin is a Lord of the Rings band.

    And since, with Wizard Rock, it’s basically all-or-nothing (The entire purpose of your band is to write music about HP, or you’re a Muggle band), it’s pretty clear who fits and who doesn’t. Even Hank Green, who has written two songs specifically about Harry Potter, is not a wizard rocker, because the vast majority of his music is about other things.

    As Dinah said, the lines grow vague when it comes to the MUSIC. The only requirement to write a wizard rock *song* is for it to be about HP. But to be in a wizard rock *band*, well, your band has to have a good portion (I’d say at least half or so) of music about it.

    To further explain my point, I’m going to make up a fictional band called The Dangerous Lizards.

    The Dangerous Lizards is composed of 3 people who love Harry Potter and who love Dr. Who, and decide that they want to write music and play in a band together. But they can’t decide whether they want to be a wizard rock band, or a Timelord rock band. So they decide to do both. They’ll write music about Dr. Who and HP.

    Does this make them wrockers or trockers then? Well, let’s say they put out an album. It features 10 tracks, 8 of which are about Dr. Who, and 2 of which are about HP. As far as I’m concerned, they’d be a trock band, for all intents and purposes. If it was something like 5/5 or even 6/4, then they could be considered both. But without that significant minority, they’d just be a trock band who also happen to write music about HP, just like Led Zeppelin were a rock band who also happened to write music about Lord of the Rings, Norse mythology, and a myriad of other awesome things.

  3. Brad Ausrotas Says:

    Ah! That was totally Freya and not Dinah. My mistake xD

  4. Laura! Says:

    Even though I answered an emphatic “YES!” to the StarKid question, I never actually thought about the distinction until that point. I would listen to the soundtrack and enjoy the heck out of it, but I never sat down and throught, “Hey, those StarKid guys, great wizard rockers.”

    To me, a wizard rocker is someone who dedicates not just their talent, but also their time and energy, into the community. To me, being a wizard rocker takes extreme amounts of commitment, and a little bit of ingenuity: I feel like a lot of wizard rockers are either students, making great music in their little-to-no-free-time, or adults with day jobs, but every single one of them gives their whole life to the community.

    I don’t feel that the Switchblade Kittens are wizard rockers. In the Wizard Rockumentary, they mentioned that they wrote the very first wizard rock song, and while that’s probably true, they also mentioned that they were moving on to “princess rock,” about the Meg Cabot novels. To me, that shows that they are not committed to either the music or the community. It’s not necessarily a bad thing – I know the community/fandom isn’t for everyone and good on them for being versatile – but it doesn’t make them wizard rockers in my eyes.

  5. Freya Says:

    Laura, I think you’ve pinned it down. You have to be a part of the community to really call yourself a wizard rocker – whether you do it online or play shows constantly. As long as you are invested in the community, you are a wizard rocker.

  6. Julia Says:

    Laura beat me to it!

    A Wizard Rocker is someone who’s involved in our community. I think we’ve proven time and again that WRock isn’t just about the music, it’s about each other, and someone who writes WRock songs isn’t automatically a part of this community unless they make an effort to be.

  7. Georgia Riddle Says:

    Brilliant question!

    Hmm… I kind of compare it to what Alex Day said on the Bridging The Rift podcast about Trock: any song about Doctor Who can be considered Trock.
    However, like Brad said with bands it’s still really subjective since there are different “labels” for the music people write, e.g Twi-rock, Trock, Wrock, Filk or even Muggle music. What other people perceive that band to be might be different to how that band wants to be perceived based on how many songs of a certain genre they’ve written. If you seriously want to start both Wrock and Trock like I do, for example, I think you should make a different band for each genre instead of putting all the songs under one multi-fandom umbrella.

    I think it’s also safe to say that to be a Wizard Rock band your band name has to be a reference to something Harry Potter related, the same way Twi-rock and Trock band names should have references to Twilight and Doctor Who respectively. Otherwise it would probably raise a load of questions about what your band name references and confuse people.

  8. Guillermina Says:

    I think a musician is a Wrocker if they consider themselves one.

  9. Brad Ausrotas Says:

    See, I’d agree with the point about the community, except that there are TONS of credible acts out there that really haven’t contributed to the community.

    Part of the reason why I love Wizard Rock is the DIY attitude that Harry and the Potters created for everyone. The idea was that if they could record an album in their living room on the weekend, just about anyone could make music about HP and call themselves wizard rockers.

    That’s how it works, guys. I love our community and everything, but before Paul and Joe came along, there wasn’t a community. So why did they write wizard rock songs? Because they love Harry Potter, and because they wanted to devote a band to making music about it. That should be the only requirement.

    There are tons of incredible bands out there that aren’t a part of the community. In fact, the only bands that can really said to be a ‘part of the community’, in the literal sense, are the bands that interact with the fandom on a large scale, and those are just the biggest couple-dozen bands out of HUNDREDS.

    Does that mean that all of these other bands deserve less credit? Are they suddenly stripped of their title just because they haven’t contributed to the community in some way? That’s nonsense.

    By creating music about HP and putting it out there for anyone to enjoy, you’re adding to the community in a way beyond anything previously thought possible. The weapon we have might be love, but music is a magic beyond all things we do here.

  10. Hogwarts Hotel Says:

    Personally, I’m with Brad. I believe that you are a wizard rocker because you decide to call your self a wizard rocker. It can be for what ever reason you want it to be, for the music, or the community. For me, an aspiring, and practically unknown wizard rocker, wrock is about the music.
    Like I said above, I don’t think that’s the case for everyone, but living up here in far away British Columbia, with the lack of opportunities and shows, I have no choice but to focus solely on the music. I think that this is the problem for a lot of wizard rockers all over the world, and, like Brad said, if you make being a permanent fixture in the community a criteria for being classified as a wrock band, you ‘re down playing the hundreds of amazing wizard rockers that, for one reason or an other, can ‘t be a part of the community.

  11. Marauder Says:

    Yeah, I don’t go for this whole “have to be in the community” thing – besides, the community as created by who? If Imaginary Band A doesn’t hang around the same sites as a lot of people, but have fun corresponding with Imaginary Bands B and C, are they part of the “community”? Besides, if that’s the qualification, it comes down to basically saying you can only be a wizard rocker if you have enough time to be part of the community. Never mind the fact that you have ten different HP songs posted and are working on the next ten – you didn’t have time for HP Alliance or checking Wizrocklopedia or figuring out in-jokes, so you’re not in the club.

    Mr. Marauder has never logged on to our MySpace once in his life and could probably name five wrock bands if he had a few minutes to think about it, but he’s co-written songs, done vocals for a few of them, and frankly, between the two of us, he’s the better singer. He’s trying to finish school and the band was my idea in the first place, but he truly loves being in it and has a lot of input on our songs.

    I know of various groups that have done one HP song just for the heck of it, so I’d say someone is a wizard rocker if they’ve done more than one song. Even if most of their songs are about other things, they did the HP ones that they did, so they’re at least a wizard rocker among other things.

  12. Laura! Says:

    Maybe “part of the community” isn’t the exact phrase I wanted … Certainly being active in the community/fandom is a big part of my opinion on What Makes A Wizard Rocker, but I don’t consider it the only criteria.

    I think you can absolutely be a wizard rocker if you only focus on music, as long as it’s not half-assed (pardon my language). I feel that the genre and community take more effort and determination than some people are willing to put in. You have to be dedicated and not give up.

    (That was my real point about the Switchblade Kittens, I think. I feel like they “gave up,” in a way.)

    I feel like if you’re going to be a wizard rocker, you have to be willing to put your heart and soul into it. If that means only writing/recording music but not playing shows, or not going to cons, that’s great.

    I also agree with what Julia said above: “I think we’ve proven time and again that WRock isn’t just about the music, it’s about each other.” It’s ABSOLUTELY about each other! And the family we’ve created. Whether you’re a part of that family in real life, or only online, or only through music, it’s about more than just music – it’s also about our relationships with each other.

  13. Brad Ausrotas Says:

    But why can’t people half-ass it? Why not? What gives you the right to decide whether someone is a wizard rocker or isn’t, based on the quality of their music?

    Call me a fundamentalist, but I think that everything goes back to the Degeorge brothers. A lot of people (news articles often point this out) think that their music is amateur, and (dare I say it) half-assed. They wrote 7 songs in an hour and performed for an audience of six. 6 of those songs formed the basis for their first album, which they recorded in their living room.

    And before that? Were they a part of the fandom? Nope. They didn’t consider themselves “super-fans”. But look what they started. Look what writing 7 songs in a kitchen in an hour, and then performing them in a shed, created.

    While wizard rock has expanded to become a part of the fandom in recent years, which is awesome, completely awesome, it can exist independent of it. There are fandom members who don’t like wizard rock and vice versa. The aspect of community is wonderful, for sure, but it’s not necessary, because when it comes down to it, wizard rock is a genre of music. And the artists that are wizard rockers are there, first and foremost, because they wanted to write music about Harry Potter.

    Wizard rock is an amateur genre. It’s not mainstream, it doesn’t get much news coverage, and the bands don’t play for stadiums every night. Those who are financially capable can go on tour and produce merch and albums and be present at conferences. They can give their time and money and themselves because it’s available to give.

    Not everyone can do that. Not everyone can go on tour, during the summer or otherwise. Not everyone can afford to be at cons, or produce albums, or sell merch. Not everyone has the TIME to do any of that either.

    Does that mean they aren’t wizard rockers? I don’t think so. Harry and the Potters don’t think so. Bands are tricky things. They form and they split, they come and they go. There are bands out there that were great that are now defunct. They still created music. It was still enjoyed. If they give up, that’s their business.

    But I agree with your point about the Switchblade Kittens. It applies to everyone. You need to fit the genre, and having only one song, or two songs out of an entire library, doesn’t make you a wizard rock artist.

  14. Freya Says:

    Are there people that consider themselves wizard rockers that don’t interact with fans and other bands, either in real life or online? Because simply by reading the ‘pedia, posting your music on MySpace, going to shows, etc. – I think that qualifies you as part of the community. I’m not saying you need to be some sort of big name fan to be a part of this. You just need to be even the tiniest bit involved. That was my point.

  15. Dinahsaur Says:

    Okay, I want to respond to a couple things before I finish reading so I can get them down before I forget or lose track of them. First:

    From Brad: “And since, with Wizard Rock, it’s basically all-or-nothing (The entire purpose of your band is to write music about HP, or you’re a Muggle band)” – With that definition, the Mudbloods aren’t Wizard Rock. Some people could argue with that statement that the Whomping Willows aren’t Wizard Rock. The same goes for other bands that have created non-HP-related songs (or songs that are only vaguely connected to HP, etc.) and released them in the mix of their Wrock albums. I don’t believe that to be Wizard Rock every single thing has to be 100% HP. Throwing in a little Muggle music with similar themes (A War Amidst Pop Songs, anyone?) is more than acceptable and in no way diminishes the Wrocker.

    As for my personal opinion on what it means to be a Wrocker? It’s a combination of intent and follow-through. If it was purely intent, then the Switchblade Kittens would be Wrockers in my mind. However, I don’t think they are at all. They wrote one song, pretended an entire album was Wizard Rock (listen to the lyrics, don’t just read the song titles… they’re not about HP), and claimed to be Wrockers. But they didn’t continue with it, they didn’t contribute to the community (in my opinion), and now they’ve moved on. They claim to have started Wrock with ‘Ode to Harry’, but HatP are the reason Wrock happened and they were not inspired by that song. So that’s my take on that.

    There are a ton of bands that have started and not continued in Wrock. I call those Wrock bands, but the individuals are no longer Wrockers unless they’re continuing to follow-through with their music, band, and the community at large. Some bands I absolutely love and listen to all the time, but cannot consider the people Wrockers anymore. (This is primarily the bands that released one or two songs 3 years ago and haven’t been seen since. By no means is it an all-consuming statement, as there are exceptions to every rule, and a few at least come to mind in the Wrock world).

    So the very base answer I give is this: If someone claims the title of Wizard Rocker and actually pursues it in some way, shape, or form. They deserve it. If they say they’re a Wizard Rocker and just use the title as a way to look cool, but don’t produce anything out of it, they don’t deserve it.

    Sorry if that was rambly. :P

  16. Brad Ausrotas Says:

    I can agree with that, Freya, by all means. By creating music about Harry Potter and sharing it with others, you’re a part of the community. That’s it. That’s all that should be required.

    I’m just getting the impression that to others it’s more than that. That you need to do more, that it goes beyond just the music. No. The music is the point, here. This all started because of the music, and it should all go back to the music as well.

  17. Brad Ausrotas Says:

    And now for Dinah.

    I completely agree with you. I was just saying that IN GENERAL, it’s all or nothing. But it doesn’t have to be. My main point there was that to be classified in the wizard rock genre, a certain portion of your library must be music about Harry Potter. Not all of it. It can go so low as to be split half-and-half. Just like with any other genre, you have to be able to back up your genre claim with your music. If your music doesn’t fit the genre, then you don’t belong there.

    And as for the Switchblade Kittens, yeah, I consider them as having one song. They have one wizard rock song, out of THREE albums worth of material. I’m going to estimate and say they have 10 tracks per album. That means that out of 30 tracks, only 1 of them is wizard rock. If a band has one dance-pop song and 29 blue-grass fusion songs, does that mean they can call themselves both? No, they don’t belong to the dance-pop genre with just one song.

    But as for defunct bands. Well, yeah, that’s how it works. If you played in a Wizard Rock band in 2007, you were a wizard rocker in 2007. If you still play in that band? You’re still a wizard rocker. If you don’t? Then you’re not a wizard rocker anymore, unless you’re playing in another wizard rock band or somesuch.

    The point is, those who gave up Wrock in 2007 are now civilians, essentially. They can claim, “Yeah, I was in a wrock band once.”, but they’re not now. So they’re not wizard rockers now, either. But they were. Perhaps you have a bit more experience with this sort of thing, but I’ve never encountered anyone just trying to usurp the title of wizard rocker. It’s not about the title, it’s about the music, and I think people get that.

  18. Molly Wazlib Says:

    Brad A: “The point is, those who gave up Wrock in 2007 are now civilians, essentially. They can claim, “Yeah, I was in a wrock band once.”, but they’re not now. So they’re not wizard rockers now, either. But they were. Perhaps you have a bit more experience with this sort of thing, but I’ve never encountered anyone just trying to usurp the title of wizard rocker. It’s not about the title, it’s about the music, and I think people get that.”

    I don’t know that I really agree with this 100%. I put out my third album over a year ago, and since then, I haven’t played any shows, I’ve released only one other song (for Jingle Spells 2), and I don’t have any new material in the works. So, for all intents and purposes, I haven’t been active in the community since the summer of 2008.

    But I still listen to wizard rock. I’m still friends with wizard rockers. I still go to (and organize!) wizard rock shows, even if I haven’t played in some time. I read the ‘Pedia, I keep in touch with some wizard rock friends. I still consider myself part of the wizard rock community. I don’t consider myself an ex-wizard rocker. I still describe myself as a wizard rocker. Does my relative dormancy negate the way I feel about my relationship to the fandom as Roonil Wazlib, or just as plain old Molly? Does one year cancel out the three previous ones where I was a much larger part of the scene?

    Overall I think this is a really interesting question to discuss. I’ve loved the debates that have been on the ‘Pedia over the last six months or so (the one about the Parselmouths and the one about sexism stand out to me).

    If my life is consumed with all the things that make up a life (in my case particularly related to being a student and a student teacher), and I can’t afford to go to and play at Wrockstock or conventions, does that make me not a wizard rocker? I would hope not.

    What do you guys think?

  19. Dinahsaur Says:

    I’m with you, Molly. Hence why I wanted to make it clear that there are exceptions and why the main people I considered in the “not exactly a Wrocker still” category as people who posted a couple song a couple years ago and haven’t looked back.

    For example, I still consider you a Wrocker, Adam (though done with the Mudbloods) is still a Wrocker at heart, Jace was still a Wrocker even though he was on hiatus (non-hiatusy as it was). But there are bands I’ve found on Myspace with a single song from 2005, for example. Or other similar situations.

    I hope that made sense. Trying to remain coherent.

  20. Brad Ausrotas Says:

    Hmm…

    That’s the thing, though. Do you still consider yourself an active wizard rocker? Are you going to continue making music in the future?

    It works like regular musicians. I’m going to use Nirvana as an example because it’s something I’m familiar with.

    When Nirvana ended, Krist and Dave went their separate ways. After Nirvana, Dave Grohl went on to form the Foo Fighters, and play in several side-projects along the way. Dave Grohl can call himself a musician, because he’s playing in bands.

    Krist Novoselic essentially disappeared after Nirvana. He played in a few small bands before focusing on politics. Can he call himself a musician today? I don’t think so. He used to be a musician. Now he’s a politician.

    As much as I can see where you’re coming from, you’re defined by the things you do now in your present view of yourself. If you make music now, you can call yourself a musician now. If you play in a wizard rock band now, you’re a wizard rocker now.

    If you played in a wizard rock band, disbanded said band, focused on other things, and then went back a few years later, well, you’d be a wizard rocker when you were playing in it, but not in the time in-between.

    A Lightning Bolt Scar were a wizard rock band in 2007. Now they’re just regular guys. If they got back together and started playing again, they’d be wizard rockers again, but I wouldn’t call them that now.

  21. Abby Says:

    I just wanna dance. :)

  22. Russ Says:

    Being a “wizard rocker” is like being a “musician” – once you’re one, you’re always one.

    If I stop writing wizard rock, but still love the fact that I released 3+ albums, and still continue to listen to wrock and support wrock bands, does that mean I’m no longer a “wizard rocker”?

    Oh hell no.

    But it is all subjective – does a band who forms, releases one song, then decides “the fad is over” qualify as a wizard rock band? It’s an interesting question.

    Like Molly notes above, sometimes one can’t always be (or doesn’t want to be) involved with wrock 100% of the time. Doesn’t mean they’re not a “wizard rocker”.

    I’m not even going to go into the example above about Krist Novoselic; I’ll be banned from here for life if I do.

    And really… I’m getting tired of this labeling crap. Why are people so concerned about who’s what nowadays? I think it is an interesting question, but seriously… just go freaking enjoy the music and have fun already.

  23. Jarrod Says:

    I agree with Guillermina who said “I think a musician is a Wrocker if they consider themselves one.”

    If you get into wizrock vs non-wizrock songs per album, people may argue that the Whomping Willows or The Mudbloods are NOT wizard rock. And that is simply ridiculous. So by this definition, could Hank Green be considered a Wizard Rocker? Sure. Has he helped shine a spotlight on our little scene? Damn right he has. I would be happy to share a stage with him anyday.

    Wizard rock is IN YOU. Let’s not overthink this.

    :)

  24. Jarrod Says:

    And FYI, that was meant in a NICE way. I love the Wizrocklopedia’s mind-opening, opinion-stirring questions. :D

  25. Zivlok Says:

    “Ode To Harry” was the first wizard rock song, but by the completely muggle band, Switchblade Kittens. Harry and the Potters were the first wizard rock band. The Weird Sisters, however, are a wizard rock band, and the Switchblade Kittens too, depending on which name they’re going by.

    Also, I think “wizard rocker” and “wizard rock band” are two very different terms. I think most people would agree that if you have played wrock music and like to consider yourself a wrocker, then you are. I go a step further and say that you can also claim yourself as a wrocker even if you’re just a fan, the same way that Lars Ulrich is a metalhead, as well as that dude who just knocked three of your teeth out (that’s what you get for moshing without protection).

    But I would say that “wizard rock band” depends on what music the band is currently playing. And really, that’s not an issue for pretty much anyone besides The Switchblade Kittens. I mean, I seriously doubt anyone would try to go out and play any other type of music under a name like Madam Maxime and the “We Prefer The Term ‘More To Love’”s? Or Augustus ROCKwood? Or Dead Fred Weasley and the “Holy Crap, Is He Really Macking On MY Angelina? REALLY?!?!?”

    Sorry, I’ve got a million of ‘em. Anywho, once a wizard rocker, always a wizard rocker, as long as you want to be. And that’s what side-bands are for, anyway. Why make muggle music under a wrock band name when you have Japonica or… or… okay, that’s the only muggle band of a wrocker I know off the top of my head, mostly because JFF sells Japonica buttons with him eating pizza, and I has one.

    Anywho. My point, and I might have one. Is this: yogurt is tasty. Seriously, it’s gooood stuff!

  26. Heather Says:

    I hate labeling bands I listen to because so many of them defy genre classification (take my favorite band Anathallo as an example!). I suppose I feel the same way about wizard rock. If wizard rock is about love and community, then I guess we should extend that sense of community to anyone who desires to be a part of it by writing songs about HP, whether that be full time or part time. :)

    Also WSN1 should go die. Not enjoying my fight with it… hope you’re feeling better, Freya (and my fellow sickos)!

  27. Helen Myrtle Dyes Her Hair (Formerly hf.gal) Says:

    No idea…
    Switchblade Kittens…
    :P
    NO!

  28. Laura Says:

    Hum, I’ve never considered myself a wrocker. I mean, I love writting stupid songs about Harry Potter and sharing them. I go to Wrockstock and regularly drive 5 plus hours to library shows. I’m a wrock fan! I do think it’s how you think of yourself.

    I think The Switchblade Kittens are a muggle band who has done wizard songs. Kinda like the Weird Sisters from GoF. I consider those songs to be wrock but are the members? No.

  29. Grace Says:

    I’ve discussed things along these lines with other people, and the thing I keep coming back to is the importance of a name. As far as distinguishing “wizard rock” bands, a name related to Harry Potter seems to be key (somebody above made this point). It’s funny to me to think that we will consider the Moaning Myrtles to be wizard rock, but Lauren Fairweather’s solo stuff – which is fairly heavy on HP content – probably wouldn’t qualify under some of the above stipulations.

    I’d love to see wizard rock be less self-limiting, more of the fluid nature of the Whomping Willows and The Mudbloods and Nagini. And I know some people have told me this would drive them away from fandom, but I like seeing bands explore other topics and themes that are just as awesome and would love to see them do it without having to create eight themed side projects, sorted by subject matter.

  30. Trudy Says:

    Hmm this is a really interesting discussion.
    I think overall I agree with Guillermina, whoever considers themselves a wrocker is one.

  31. Marauder Says:

    “And really…I’m getting tired of this labeling crap. Why are people so concerned about who’s what nowadays? I think it is an interesting question, but seriously…just go freaking enjoy the music and have fun already.”

    You know what? I agree. Scratch what I said about more than one song.

    I’d count “Secret Keeper” by Switchblade Kittens as a wizard rock song along with “Ode to Harry Potter”. I’m kind of getting the impression some people here have some resentment towards them…what’s with that? And as for “they gave up,” oh, for heaven’s sake, it’s their lives and they can write songs about whatever the heck they want. It’s not like they abandoned faith in the Church of Wizard Rock or something.

    I don’t think it really does anyone any good to get all clubby about this.

  32. IFTBA Says:

    The requirements are: you have a song, you are currently active, you call yourself a “wizard rocker,” and you have a wizard rock band or name decicated entirely to wizard rock.

    “Wizard rock” itself is just a catch-all term applied to any songs about Harry Potter.

    Disagree with Russ. Terms only apply if you do what the term describes. You’re only a musician if you play an instrument, even if it’s just in your spare time. Proof is requisite. Otherwise it’s just talk. You have to make wizard rock to be a wizard rocker. If the only requirement is capability, then EVERY band would be a wizard rock band, because they’re all capable of making songs about Harry Potter. The label has to describe the present-tense. Not history or intentions.

    If Ozzy Osbourne becomes nothing but a mute head in a jar, he’s still a rock legend, but not a rocker.

    The root of “wrocker” is the verb form of “wrock.” Verbs require action. So, if your wrock band breaks up, you’re not a wrocker anymore. This isn’t like the dubious term, “Mr. President.” You can’t just do it once and keep it forever. You have to earn it.

    “It’s not who you are deep down, but what you DO that defines you.”
    -The Prophet Katie Holmes-Cruise

  33. Marauder Says:

    “The requirements are: you have a song, you are currently active, you call yourself a “wizard rocker,” and you have a wizard rock band or name decicated entirely to wizard rock.”

    I don’t think this works. What’s “currently active”? If you go on hiatus but have plans to return, are you currently active? If you haven’t done a new song in a couple of years but you check Wizrocklopedia from time to time, are you “currently active”? And if your band has to be “dedicated entirely to wizard rock,” well, there goes every single band that ever did so much as one song that wasn’t HP-related.

  34. Jarrod Says:

    Brad:
    I need to politely disagree with you about this statement:
    “Krist Novoselic essentially disappeared after Nirvana. He played in a few small bands before focusing on politics. Can he call himself a musician today? I don’t think so. He used to be a musician. Now he’s a politician.”

    First off, the guy was in a band that influenced me (and millions of others) at a very formative time in my (musical) life. I was 14-15 and until then had been shaped by Elvis Presley and Guns N Roses. They opened a whole new realm of possibilities to the garage band. So to say because he is not currently in a band (as far as we know), that makes him no longer a musician? If he plays an acoustic guitar on his back porch for his own enjoyment, is that not making MUSIC? I don’t think one has to play with a band or gigs to be a musician. I also don’t think that you have a time limit to pick up an instrument or you’re no longer a musician. When I lived in San Francisco, I didn’t play anything for a year. I wasn’t NOT a musician, I was just a musician without resources. Make sense?

    Just my thoughts. :D

  35. Brad Ausrotas Says:

    Jarrod:

    I suppose I’m making a number of assumptions about Krist’s life in using him as an example. For the purpose of the example, I was labouring under the idea that Krist has retired completely from music to focus on politics.

    If this is the case, while his contributions to music are notable (and awesome), he still can’t call himself a musician if he’s not anymore.

    “If he plays an acoustic guitar on his back porch for his own enjoyment”, then yeah, he sure as hell still is a musician! Absolutely!

    Perhaps real-life examples don’t really work the best in this situation.

    But I still believe that you’re a musician while you’re making music. If you give up on making music, you can’t claim to be a musician anymore, can you?

  36. Martha Says:

    Didn’t The Switchblade Kittens do a whole wrock album? They have multiple wrock songs on their Myspace page, so I know they didn’t just do that one song. I would call them a muggle band that did a wrock album. So they’re still wrockers, but they’re not a wrock band. After all, there’s no law preventing muggle bands from writing songs about Harry Potter if they feel like it. And there are even wrock bands that have done wrock albums that have muggle songs on them (The Mudbloods, The Whomping Willows), in addition to wrockers who also have muggle bands (Riddle TM, Ministry of Magic).

  37. IFTBA Says:

    Marauder, my definition for “currently active” is that you have not officially broken up the band. And the reason for this is simply to say you “are” a wizard rocker, not that you “were” a wizard rocker. It’s semantics, not a law. After a certain period of inactivity, obviously any band is pushing the definition of “being.”

    As for every band that did a non-HP song… it doesn’t mean a wrock band can’t do a muggle cover. It means you state publicly that your band is a wizard rock band. As opposed to just “a band” who does one wrock album. I don’t think this really excludes anybody, as the only case I can think of is Switchblade Kittens. And that’s only because the wrock scene didn’t exist then. Technically, “The Weird Sisters” is the name of an album by the Switchblade Kittens. It says so on the CD.

    As for Krist… it’s not like saying he’s not a musician anymore means he was never a musician. But I think he is on record as saying he’s not interested in music anymore. If you can say THAT and still be a musician, well it’s like the Hotel California. You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.

  38. Ashley Says:

    I don’t have time t read all those comments today, like I usually do, because I’m meant to fighting evil, writing books today (well, one at the moment, but that’ll change at the end of the month, when I branch out. Aren’t I great?)

    So I’m just going to get straight to the point.

    I have written several wrock songs. So many, in fact, that the envelope I keep them in is splitting down the sides. I’m going to have to glue them into my notebook soon. All wizardrock.

    I’ve just never recorded them. That’s the only problem.

    But yes, I do, very much, count myself a wizardrocker. Because most of the songs I’ve ever written are wizardrock. I’m not sure if I’ve ever finished a non-wizardrock song.

    Therefore, wizardrocker. Dork. Is it kind of weird that I get so much more inspiration from fantasy than reality?

  39. wrockergrrrl Says:

    Brad Ausrotas, when you say The Switchblade Kittens only did one Wizard Rock song, are discounting their alter-ego band, The Weird Sisters? That WHOLE album is devoted to Harry Potter (and fellow characters)! Whether they are solely “Wizard Rockers” is a different issue but to say “They’re no more of a wizard rock band than Led Zeppelin is a Lord of the Rings band” is ludicrous and rather ignorant and misinformed in my opinion! They were the original wizard rockers! They were the ONLY band at the Harry Potter convention in Florida…before the movement became what it became! I must admit that I would consider them muggles at their core, but there is no way anyone can take away their wizard rock mark on history. Just like the saying goes, “Once a Marine, always a Marine”…”Once a wizard rocker, always a wizard rocker!” Ooh Rah!

  40. Russ Says:

    Old thread is old.

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