Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Nurse the Hate: Hate Old Rock




I saw an article today in the British Press about the upcoming Keith Richards autobiography and how it's going to really freak Mick Jagger out when Keith goes public with Mick's womanizing and drug taking in the Rolling Stones glory days of the late 60s/early 70s. Is that right? Allow me to counter that stance Sir. I would say that Mick would be doing cartwheels if anyone thought he was "dangerous" these days. Those Rolling Stones guys have teams of PR experts working on making them look dangerous right now. I saw Mick sitting in a suite at the World Cup semi finals with ex-President Bill Clinton and other members of the chicken dinner lecture circuit while wearing a scarf and what appeared to be women's sunglasses. I think he could use as much a reminder of what an excessive cat he was in the early 70s as anyone. He's like a cool old Uncle now (that tends to dress like an Aunt on occaison).

It's tough to try and continue to produce good music when you can have a bunch more fun going to soccer matches and having sex with Brazilian models 40 years younger than yourself. What would you rather do? Sit in the practice space with leathery Ron Wood and Keith Richards, or hang out with Clinton and models? It takes some real dedication to keep writing good stuff. You can really count on one hand how many rock musicians continued to make good music after they really hit it big and hit middle age. Neil Young... Bob Dylan... Maybe Tom Petty... Shit, is there anyone else? The guys I really respect are the ones that have had some moderate success, and still keep doing it well. With these artists, it doesn't seem to matter if the large audience is there or not. They continue doing what it is that they do, as if they have to do it. It's not a choice, it's who they are.

Robyn Hitchcock is a great example. I have a feeling that if you left him alone in a cabin for 3 months, you'd return to find out he'd written 6 complete full lengths, of which 3 would be really good and all would have something of merit. He must have 30+ full length releases since 1980, and the quality of them has maintained throughout. Sure, some are better than others, but it's not like he's been coasting. Interestingly, he continues to write about many of the same themes, but his stuff always comes from a slightly new angle. I've seen him in clubs, then on mid sized theater stages, and then back in the clubs. It doesn't matter. He just does what he does.

There is not many of these types out there. Bob Mould, Jon Spencer, New Model Army, Dave Lowery of Cracker/Camper Van Beethoven, Buzzcocks, Fred Cole of Dead Moon/Pierced Arrows, The Gourds, Frank Black, Dexter Romweber, Bob Pollard, Nick Cave, and Shaver come to mind. These are all musicians that have been doing really good (and sometimes great) stuff for a long time. Maybe it's not as sexy to be into them now as the press has moved onto the Next Hot Thing, but there's a reason the work keeps coming out of these guys. It's good stuff. Maybe not all of it, but it's certainly worth as much attention as whatever the hell is on the cover of Alternative Press this week. Remember, when someone is all breathless about the "New Thing", that today's LCD Soundsystem is tomorrow's Girls Vs Boys.

Now where the hell did I put my Gourds "Stadium Blitzer" disc...

4 Comments:

At July 7, 2010 at 5:25:00 PM EDT , Blogger 陳登陽 said...

人有兩眼一舌,是為了觀察倍於說話的緣故。............................................................

 
At July 9, 2010 at 11:48:00 PM EDT , Blogger JasonBirk佳琪 said...

當一個人內心能容納兩樣相互衝突的東西,這個人便開始變得有價值了。............................................................

 
At July 19, 2010 at 9:31:00 PM EDT , Blogger Dave L. said...

Would you include Mike Ness in that group?

 
At July 20, 2010 at 12:39:00 AM EDT , Blogger AZ said...

Hey, Ron Jeremy is looking good in that pic.

 

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