Music: Emotional Rescue

EMO IS ABOUT FEELINGS, THE SAD KIND, BUT IT MAKES TEENS AND RECORD LABELS HAPPY

Chris Carrabba has a fine, high voice and looks like a genetic cross between Luke Perry and Jason Priestley. But these attributes have little to do with his success. Frequently, Carrabba--who goes by the stage name Dashboard Confessional--doesn't even sing during his performances. He just strums an acoustic guitar while the audience of mostly middle-class white kids shouts every word of his desperate, heartbroken lyrics in a sort of primal-scream karaoke. "It's almost cultlike," says Carrabba of his fans' spooky intensity. "I know they're endearing songs, but there are a lot of endearing songs."

You might think Carrabba is a rock...

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