|Photos by Craig Hlavaty|
|Ed. Note: This is merch from the show and not a poster from Craig's room... we think.|
Aftermath shook hands Thursday night with Kenny G, a man who has arguably been one of the most reviled men in pop music now nearly 30 years. Why are we bringing this up? It's not to name-drop or poke fun at the man. We mainly feel guilty for being a part of this filthy little cabal these past few decades.
See, we have always been taught that Kenny G sucks. From the first time we heard his name uttered in 1993's Wayne's World 2
, our brains have associated him with "yuck." Along with Yanni, Michael Bolton, and (to a lesser extent) John Tesh, Mr. G has formed a sort of "Fantastic Four" of ill public repute. It's not deserved either. We can blame hipper-than-thou Generation X culture for that.
Of course, in 1992, something like G's "Forever in Love" is going to pale against "Smells like Teen Spirit." That's like comparing a wet dirty kiss from your girlfriend while in the shower together to the polite peck on your cheek from your aunt on your birthday. It's just that in the early '90s, every hipster in flannel felt the need to rebel against something, even if it wasn't something that had no intentions of being a detriment to their way of life. Kenny plays instrumental saxophone, guys. He wasn't trying to write odes to heroin and growing up under Reagan on heroin.
Kenny G is a professional saxman, and arguably one of the best that we will ever see. That's coming from a student of music who figuratively is now just earning his bachelor's after 27 years. Aftermath can call a spade a spade, and hold his fire on something worth his time.
We can't muster the blind hatred the way we used to, especially against someone so clear-cut as Kenny G. Anyone who calls themselves a music fan that could sit through nearly two hours of Mr. G's work last night and couldn't walk out with a respect for the man doesn't love music, nor do they know how to appreciate it.
Aftermath doesn't like raw onions, but he's not going to call everyone who eats raw onions a dipshit and throw his rusty stiletto at them. If Kenny G gets your rocks off, then damn it if we can't all live in harmony.
Kenny G appeared from one of Arena Theatre's side doors in the circular room, with sax in hand. He began playing with his five-piece backing band as walked through the crowd, holding a note for two-minutes at one point. He got close to his fans, showing how effortless sax is to him. Grown men sat up enthralled, and Aftermath even muttered a few exclamatory expletives.