How Gospel is like polka
From avfl’s favorite Canadian reader, NG:
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A story in the Toronto Star of Jan. 28 about Polka Music possibly being removed from the list of Grammy categories next year got me wondering if there are similarities between the Polka Music industry and SGM (excluding Gaither).
Some facts about Polka music:
1. There are at least four different North American Polka Styles.
2. With CD sales declining, polka music isn’t the force it used to be.
3. Four of five Grammy-nominated recordings were produced and distributed by the artists independently. According to one of the nominees, John Gora: Acts are lucky to sell more than a couple of thousand copies of a CD, most of them off stage at performances.
4. Artists say there is little to be gained from a Grammy win unless you’re signed to a major label with access to promotional money and space on store shelves.
5. Though major North American polka festivals still draw multiple thousands, they’ve diminished over the past 20 years.
6. Nominated Artist Walter Ostanek said: “Polka will never die but no one makes a living at it . . . it’s for weekend warriors now.”
7. Another quote from Ostanek: “If the Polka Grammy disappeared tomorrow it will be thrown into one of the roots music or world music categories and then you’ll never hear of guys like us again.”
(Toronto Star did the story because nominees quoted are Canadians.)