During the recent "Let's-add-another-show-in-Lafayette" frenzy by Garth Brooks' people, one local artist made a comment about the number of people going to Garth's shows, and then took some heat for his comment.

Lane Mack posted what some people may have considered a negative post toward Garth Brooks, but then he recovered when he explained his position.

Facebook/Lane Mack
Facebook/Lane Mack

I totally get what Lane is saying: if more local musicians had as much support from the local community that the national artists receive, maybe we'd have more national artists from Acadiana. He wasn't knocking Garth at all, he was just lamenting about the low turnout for local artists.

Some of the replies on his post included "Maybe you need to swing around on cables" (I know that this one was tongue-in-cheek) and "He has radio hits", "Just tell yourself.. 19 more number one singles!".

Now, I know most of the people who posted the above responses, and most of them are tongue-in-cheek or are submitted as what they think others believe, but Lane Mack has a great point when he repeated this saying: "your favorite big time musicians were once locals somewhere, too".

Here's Lane's follow-up post to explain his position:

Look y'all I ain't knocking Garth Brooks at all, not even talking about myself with that last post but I just want to see my local people getting the recognition they deserve around here. Just bc it isn't on the radio doesn't mean it isn't good haha. I had local stations tell me that my music didn't "fit what they were doing" and they refused to spin my songs, that is until the EP got some recognition then what do ya know they wanted to spin it. And thank the big man upstairs for the local stations that actually do spin independent local artists!
I used to be at local shows (of all genres) way more than I am now, mostly bc kids and playing my own shows have taken away my time for any extra, but I just want people to recognize the talent that we have here (and it ain't just Cajun/Zydeco)
I've heard this saying a few times "your favorite big time musicians were once locals somewhere too"
Anyways my point is, get out there and see some live music. Anything local! Go see the genres you like, or just show up to something new. Believe me as a local musician and I'm sure I can speak for most others, WE APPRECIATE y'all coming to the shows! It's how we afford to record music and keep things up and running. (Plus in my opinion the shows are always the best part)
Look, I'll play music for a room of 1000 or a room of 10. It's all the same to me. It's magic being on stage. Im there to have fun and at the end of the day that's why I (me personally) do it.
To end this whole jumble of word diarrhea Yall have a good time watching Garth Brooks! Honestly I've seen his tv specials it's going to be insane. I don't know how he has that much energy.
Lane Mack

Well said, Lane! From the karaoke bars to the mid-sized venues to the festivals, there is a lot of great local talent playing around Acadiana. Is that local talent as talented as the national artists? Sometimes they are more talented than the national artists, but they lack the deep pockets that the national artists enjoy. The national artists have more money and infrastructure to put on extravagant shows, hire dancers, backup singers, bass players who aren't drunk (just kidding!), you get the point: the raw talent is still there, but there are so many layers of other fluff to help carry the show. If you come to a show at a local venue, usually all you get is the raw talent (and if you are lucky, a great light show from Keith Kelly!).

It's kind of like going to a fancy restaurant to eat, and they bring you a cup of gumbo as an appetizer. The gumbo is good: rich and thick, with chunks of andouille sausage and smoked duck breast, with fresh parsley and a few pinches of file', served over that 2-Minute Uncle Ben's rice. Delicious, right? But, is it your grandma's gumbo? "Oh, but wait, JayCee: that's totally different!"  Wait, what? They are both gumbo, right? They are both delicious, right?. Which is better?  "Well, JayCee, they are both great, in their own way." Right, they are both great in their own way. Granny's gumbo is just a basic, delicious gumbo. The fancy restaurant gumbo has all that extra fluff. Local artists are just raw talent; national shows have all that extra fluff.

I'm with you, Lane Mack: I am a HUGE fan of Garth Brooks. If I could afford a ticket, I would try to be on the front row and I'd be singing along with every song. I might even throw some panties at him. For my local musicians, I treat them the same way: on the front row, singing along with every song. (But I'm going to hold on to my panties for the local shows because I'll have to see the local musicians again later this month: it would be embarrassing to be known as "The Panty Guy".) One day, that "local artist" might recognize you on the front row when they are playing the Cajundome on their "Homecoming" tour.

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