Thursday, November 29, 2007

We're not all in the mood for a melody

There won't be live music at Nordstroms.

According to the Seattle Times,

Some Nordstrom department stores are discontinuing their live piano notes in favor of commercially recorded music piped in over speakers.

Nordstrom's store at Bellevue Square recently did away with its pianist, and the Alderwood mall store in Lynnwood will soon follow suit, said company spokeswoman Brooke White.

Apparently, some shoppers prefer popular tunes by the likes of Bob Dylan, Alicia Keys and Frank Sinatra to the jazz and Broadway standards that pianists have been performing in Nordstrom stores for 20 years.

"We know there's a nostalgic value to the piano, and some customers love it. But some don't. They just feel the piano is outdated," White said. "It's a difficult line to walk. We know we're going to disappoint some people."

The Oregonian also quotes White: "We certainly understand that some people are disappointed, and that's something we always hate to do at Nordstrom. But over time, we just evolve our experience."

My gnostic buster antennae are tingling. So live is passe. Now we prefer our music to be canned. The Market knows best! But hold on. Does this have anything to say to us about how people nowadays respond to incarnation? Is it really good news to proclaim "God is With Us!" Does the gospel need to "evolve" too? Yes, we certainly need to do more than just preach; we must get down and dirty. But that's my point. If we do not have Christ's incarnation as our motivation-- the conviction that live is better than virtual--then why bother?

Its a pretty good crowd for a saturday
And the manager gives me a smile
cause he knows that its me theyve been comin to see
To forget about life for a while
And the piano, it sounds like a carnival
And the microphone smells like a beer
And they sit at the bar and put bread in my jar
And say, man, what are you doin here?

1 comment:

Dan said...

Wow. I'm (almost) speechless. Disgusted, for sure. Alan Hirsch calls consumerism one of the greatest threats to the gospel today. Always follow the whims of consumers. Market your product to meet the shifting demands of an ever-restless consumer base. Sell out to the lowest common denominator.

One more great example of the dumbing down of our world.