I love numbers and statistics and facts. I *need* things to line up and balance… I have to cross-check and verify and substantiate. That’s just how I’m wired. And when it comes to writing about my favorite subject (darling Benjamin, of course!) I am compelled to make sure I know what the heck I’m talking about and that I have the documentation to back it up.
Fact-checking, unfortunately, takes a bit of time and so that is one of the reasons why I don’t post more often. I have a long list of ideas of what I want to write about but I’m always thinking, “Shoot, I have to find that one article…!” I really need to get a better system of organizing my materials. What I really wish I had was a database where I could scan in everything and tag every piece of info so that I could do searches based on whatever topic I’m chewing on at the moment…
But I digress. The whole point of this little post is to share with you two of my favorite online sources of information, which I have ended up going back to more than I thought I would when I initially found them.
The first is setlist.fm’s statistics listings for The Cars’ tours. This little goldmine displays all of the performances by the band, what locations they played in (including television performances), and the set lists for each show. It also compiles numbers on the frequency and rotation of all of The Cars’ songs. On top of that, you can look at each song, see when it was first performed in concert, who has covered it, and a plethora of other information. It’s awesome! I’ve used it over and over to help me pinpoint timeline info. The drawback is that it is a wiki, so it allows collaborative editing of its content by its users and there is a chance it is not entirely accurate. So far the one discrepancy I’ve heard of is that a show was missing from the list. I can handle that.
The second website is the United States Copyright Office public catalog. This garners a little less variety of information, but it has been very helpful in sorting out who wrote what, the approximate dates that songs were written, and who was working with whom. Unfortunately this has created more material for my “Benjamin, I wanted to ask you about…” file, as he is listed as co-writer on many songs I haven’t heard. The never-ending mysteries of Ben’s world!
So… if you’re a nerdy statistics junkie like me you’ll love these two resources — check them out! And I hope that if/when I ever post anything that is not accurate someone will call me on it, please and thank you. We’ve got to band together to make sure Benjamin’s legacy is passed on with integrity and truth.