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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Remember when MTV first started out? It was a small network that began in the 80s and revolutionized the way music and television were viewed. Literally. It was the first time anyone saw a real music video.

Teenagers secretly snuck into their television rooms while their parents weren’t looking and watched the hippest video versions of their favorite songs, making them feel instantly cooler. Stars like Madonna, Pat Benetar, and the Buggles ruled the screen. Then things started going awry…

When MTV introduced their first reality show, things started to go downhill. The Real World was a look inside a world where seven strangers came together to live. Everything the college aged party animals did was taped with very few things held back. The show was a great success, so the network kept airing more shows like it.

These days, there are more reality shows on the network than there are actual music videos. In fact, it’s a rare thing to witness any occurence of music at all. We can thank the television channel for raunchy shows like Jersey Shore (douchebags pictured above).

As a result, the network has decided to take the ‘music’ out of its logo. In an article from the Los Angeles Times, David Howe, president of the SyFy channel, says the name ‘music television’ is too limiting and outdated. MTV’s head of marketing, Tina Exarhos, believes that people don’t refer to the channel as ‘music television’ anymore and the network should move on.

I spend a lot of time reminiscing about simpler times, and this is certainly one of those cases. Reality shows make America dumber! Not to mention, most people who watch MTV’s reality shows are mostly teenagers. An entire generation, wasting their brain’s potential on this stuff.

Good thing I cancelled my television service.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Crosby, Stills, and Nash will perform on August 9. Photo from boston.com.

Crosby, Stills, and Nash will perform on August 9. Photo from boston.com.

One of Pennsylvania’s largest summer music festivals opens its doors to tons of waiting fans today, offering three special performances by The Commodores, Martin Sexton, and Ladysmith Black Mambazo.

Musikfest has been happening in downtown Bethlehem for the past twenty five years now. It has brought many large acts from all across the country to the smallish town in Pennsylvania.

This year, the festival will feature 300 performers, including 10 nightly headlining shows. The concerts will take place on fourteen different stages, eleven of which are free. (Free is good.)

Here’s a quick run through of some of the headliners. You can find information on the rest of the bands performing on the lineup website. I would love to list them all for you, but then this post would never end.

  • The Commodores
  • Chris Isaak/The Wallflowers
  • Yes with special guest Asia
  • David Cook with Green River Ordinance
  • Third Eye Blind with Matt Nathanson
  • The B-52s/Joan Jett & the Blackhearts
  • Puddle of Mudd with special guest Stasis
  • Pat Benetar & Blondie with The Donnas
  • George Thorogood and the Destroyers with Jonny Lang
  • Crosby, Stills & Nash

You can see that the festival offers something for everyone. The musical tastes being provided are certainly eclectic to say the least. Each headliner (or two) will be performing one of the nine nights the festival runs.

It should be noted that the headliners cost some money. You can find tickets for each show here. But if you don’t feel like spending the money, there are still tons of free performers spread out all over Bethlehem. It might be quite nice to just walk around and take in the sights and sounds. There are also craft, art, and food vendors all over the place, too.

The whole town pretty much turns into one big music celebration. I recommend you join in the fun!

Get the low down at Musikfest.org.

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