Great way to publicize your band, right?

This year’s Sammies are right around the bend, and what better way to commemorate the occasion than a boycott?

Last weekend, an entity calling itself “Sacramento” posted a laundry list of grievances at its Web site, Many of these were garden-variety inflammatory accusations, essentially claiming that SN&R runs the Sammies the way the Florida Republican Party runs its elections.

Of the 23 grievances, at least seven curiously had to do with a specific but unmentioned band. Scrolling to the bottom of the site led to three “Links” buttons, marked “The Band,” “they do not” and “want you to hear!” All three links accessed the Web site, apparently the Internet home of a Rocklin hard-rock quartet called Moore. The Web site is registered to a Michael T. Moore of Rocklin, who is listed as the lead vocalist of Moore at that band’s Web site. No surprise there. Moore, whose band was nominated in the metal category last year, was ejected by security from the Crest Theatre during the Sammies, after he was observed grabbing a microphone and changing settings on the theater’s soundboard—actions that will get anyone thrown out of a concert venue.

Here are the events of last year, as we understand them, which were described by one employee of this newspaper as a “comedy of errors.” After an impressive write-in campaign, a former SN&R promotions director added Moore’s name to the ballot in the metal category. The promotions director asked Moore to submit a JPEG-format photo. Moore apparently e-mailed it to her, but SN&R’s art department never received it; when the Sammies program was going to production, the art department tried to contact the promotions director and the band, to no avail, so the band was listed as “not pictured.” Then, on the night of the Sammies, the person announcing the category neglected to mention Moore as a nominee, even though the band was listed on an overhead projection.

Yes, this is a constellation of unfortunate events that might be misconstrued as a dark conspiracy. Moore certainly had a right to be pissed off, and if no one from this paper has apologized for all the mix-ups, I’m doing that now. That said, as a fellow frustrated musician whose dreams of success came nowhere near materializing, I learned a difficult lesson. It is this: “Talent” can carry you only so far; the social skills of building and maintaining relationships are what really can make a difference. And whether an artist elects to build bridges or burn them down is a matter of personal choice.

This year’s Sammies will be held at the Crest on Wednesday, April 2. The deadline for ballots is 5 p.m. Thursday, March 6. And, contrary to certain allegations, write-ins are accepted, counted and even encouraged.