Many people say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. This is perhaps never more true than when examining the many tribute bands that have formed over the course of musical history. There are many reasons that artists form tribute bands, and each band has a definite motivation behind their act. Some of the most common reasons that bands form tribute acts are the following:
- To honor a personal idol – This is perhaps the most popular reason that people form tribute bands. Most often, one or more members of the tribute act grew up idolizing a particular band or artist. Using this person or act as motivation, the tribute band seeks to honor them by keeping their music alive.
- To revive a type of music – As time goes on, musical styles change to match modern tastes. While some people enjoy this progression, others long for music of a bygone era and form tribute bands to keep those musical styles alive. These revival bands often find pockets of success in fan bases that also yearn for that particular music style.
- To put their own spin on an act – Some artists choose to form tribute bands to honor a specific artist while putting their own twist on the music. They see room for interpretation in their favorite music, and use the platform a tribute band gives them to create new music from old songs. This style has become very popular for compilation recordings, with many modern artists submitting a song from a notable musician to a compilation album. Making a musical tribute to famous acts is one of the most popular ways for artists to honor their favorite musicians.
Contrary to popular belief, tribute acts are not always formed after an artist dies. Instead, tribute bands often form to encapsulate a specific moment or time period in an artist’s career that was particularly notable or influential.