I Could've Been A Contender

God, there's a lot of talent out there.

Always has been and always will be.

Those that come by it naturally, however, don't always receive their just rewards and while the mediocre and sometimes downright pitiful undeservedly ascend the stairs to the altar of fame and fortune (this means you Britney, Ke$ha, and other assorted manufactured products) the poor saps imbued with abundant natural gifts are left wallowing in the gutter playing for pocket change on the dive bar circuit.

Sometimes if the circumstances are right, they achieve some small measure of recognition but don't leap the hurdle into full-blown stardom.

The following is a list of some of my favorite musicians who based on ability, talent, and chutzpah, should have been huge but didn't quite go over the tipping point.

Matt Johnson & The The

If you need any confirmation on this one, just take one listen to "Armageddon Days" off 1987's seminal "Mind Bomb."

Go ahead, I'll wait.

Now try to argue with me. You can't, can you?

Rarely do goosebumps appear on my arms, but this raw, unhinged, passionate album hits you right in the cavern that once held your cold little heart and you truly feel the agony in his guttural screeches and wails.

He means it.

PJ Harvey

Like Matt Johnson, Polly Jean was always a critics' darling with a rabid fan base, but she never had the mainstream appeal of the more popular artists of the day. She covered taboo subjects, rocked a little too hard and didn't care what anyone thought.

Robyn Hitchcock

What was that you say? You don't know who Robyn Hitchcock is? Well welcome to the club. NO ONE seems to know anything about this guy when I bring him up in conversation. But guess what teeming masses of humanity? YOUR LOSS!

Look him up and memorize the words to "Balloon Man," you'll thank me later.

Here he is going off on a wonderfully bizarre rant on MTV before introducing his video!

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