There and Back

The only time I usually get to see MTV is at the gym, so I missed last night’s debut of Ashley Parker Angel’s new series, There and Back. The former O-Town singer’s trying to get a solo record made, he’s living with his pregnant girlfriend, and he’s broke because (among other things) he spent too much money on a car.

Though I imagine it’s played on-screen for darkly comic effect, this scenario is actually really, really common for bands that get signed to major labels and either get dropped or fall into shelving limbo. According to Reality Blurred, there’s a truly embarrassing moment where Ashley interviews for a gig at Guitar Center and the manager really has no clue who he is (despite the camera crew).

In an era where our biggest pop stars are assembled by reality television shows for fickle mass audiences, imagine the kind of career you’d have if you focused instead on building solid, supportive relationships with just 1,000 fans?

You’d have more in the bank than Ashley does right now, that’s for sure.

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2 responses

  1. My dad always said experience is the best teacher, but sometimes it’s better when it’s someone elses experience. As much fun as he may have had during O-Town’s height of success, I don’t envy his situation now. Good luck Ashley…

    But there is an important lesson to learn here; more bands need to know this stuff. I’ve set up a new blog on my band’s web site specifically aimed at my band members! It’s called Indie Music Adventures. Since they’re not as active in learning about the industry, I’m hoping they’ll at least read their own band’s blog. That way they too will get this kind of info and maybe learn from it.

    Bottom line: good point, Joe, about building solid, supportive relationships. Just because you grow with a grassroots foundation, doesn’t mean you can’t also eventually have success beyond the grass roots.

  2. […] Joe Taylor from made note of former O-Town member Ashley Parker Angel’s struggles as documented on MTVs new show There and Back. It’s kind of sad that MTV can build a whole show’s premise on the phenomenon of going to the top in the music industry and crashing back down to be in more debt and struggling more than before. All this after having a platinum selling album!?! […]