Unlike the rest of us who merely tune in for the sheer
lunacy of “Jersey Shore,” Atlanta rockers The Swear actually have a substantial reason to watch the
breakout MTV reality series.
The critically acclaimed five-year-old band could glean some
major exposure and potentially some serious coin from MTV’s number one show. So
far, two of the band’s songs — “Last Breath” and “Shuttered Off Christine” have
been featured in stereotype-reinforcing show.
“Guilty as charged,” says The Swear singer-songwriter Elizabeth
Elkins when Intel inquired about whether
she tunes into the televised train wreck. “Ordinarily, I’m a History Channel
watcher. I’m a serious viewer who wants to learn something. But I also have a
need to tune into mindless reality shows. ‘Jersey Shore?’ ‘Rock of Love?’ I’m
When the premiere episode of “Jersey Shore” first hit the
airwaves last month, Elkins, guitarist Jeremy Zamora, bassist Kevin Williams and drummer Steve Moretti immediately began receiving texts from fans after
they caught of an earful of “Last Breath” between hair gel-fueled hot tub
Last week, viewers got an extended sample of Shuttered Off
Christine” as the swimsuit-clad roommates continued to redefine the phrase ‘business
acumen’ at their seaside T-shirt shop.
While the writerly rocker originally penned by Elkins as a
reflection of a friend with substance issues living in the declining burg of
Anniston, Alabama, the songwriter has her own theories about why the thoughtful
track was used by “Jersey Shore” music supervisors.
“It’s probably less about the emotional qualities of the
song and more about Jeremy’s really great guitar riff!” laughs Elkins. “If you
listen closely, it’s really a creepy gothic song at its core.”
Whenever The Swear has a new recording project finished,
Elkins mails off a disc to MTV music supervisors. The band never knows for sure
if anything sent will ever be used.
Until a BMI/ASCAP statement and a check is sent nine months
later (bands are paid each time a song is aired), that is.
So Elkins and The Swear aren’t exactly complaining about
“Jersey Shore” currently running around the clock on MTV. As a reality show
viewer, Elkins understands the show’s appeal.
“It’s just so bad,”
she says. “I literally watched the first episode with my jaw on the floor. I
remember thinking ‘holy [expletive] this is going to be really popular.’ But our drummer Steve is a second
generation Italian from Jersey. He’s offended by this show on every level.”
After five years of near non-stop gigging around town at
Smith’s Olde Bar, 10 High and The Five Spot (their next gig is at Lenny’s on
March 26), producing an EP “Every Trick’s a Good One” and LP “Hotel Rooms and
Heart Attacks,” the band is grateful for the national exposure (MTV.com has
also linked “Christine” to online retail outlets for viewers to purchase).
“It’s exposure you can’t buy,” says Elkins. “We’re very
thankful for it.”
For more info: www.theswear.com/
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