small brush shouldn't fuck with big timber

Death's Door, the view from the Spanish announcers table: <strong>Music shit </strong>

Tuesday, March 30

Music shit

MSNBC came out with its ideal list of the ten greatest rock bands ever. I’ll give a bit of their take on shit, then finish up with my take on shit.

1.The Beatles

The Beatles are unquestionably the best and most important band in rock history, as well as the most compelling story. Almost miraculously, they embodied the apex of the form artistically, commercially, culturally and spiritually at just the right time, the tumultuous '60s, when music had the power to literally change the world (or at least to give the impression that it could, which may be the same thing). The Beatles are the archetype: there is no term in the language analogous to “Beatlemania.”

(I’ll give it to em on this one, the Beatles “Revolution” was the first rock song I ever paid attention too. As individuals the Beatles put out some of the best music but also some of the gayest shit ever written, can you say Ebony & Ivory? But it all had that Beatles signature sound, which is why I agree with em being on this list. The Liverpool sound is so distinct it should be copy written. Do yourself a favor and play some Beatles at high volume and just listen to Ringo’s drumming.

2. The Rolling Stones

When the Beatles ceased to exist in 1970, the title of “World’s Greatest Rock ‘n’ Roll Band” fell with very little dispute to the Rolling Stones, who by then were in the middle of such a wondrous creative peak that they might have challenged the Fab Four for the title anyway. It’s a title the one-time “anti-Beatles” haven’t relinquished since. Not only have the Stones been the greatest rock band in the world for more than 30 years, but they have been a functioning rock ‘n’ roll unit for more than 40, the longest run in history.

I’ve had many discussions about the Stones versus the Beatles. For one I’ve never considered the Stones a “rock band”. Whenever I hear the Stones I hear rhythm & blues, or rock so influenced by R&B it’s a moot point. For a junkie Keith Richards is an impressive guitar player, and Charlie Watts has always struck me as a minimalistic mystery. But remove either one and the Stones wouldn’t be who they are. Here’s an interesting side note, during what had to be a severe bout of lucidness, Richards once gave a great insight into why the Beatles really broke up. He blamed it on lack of monitors. For those of you that don’t know, monitors are the speakers that face the performer so that they can hear themselves play or sing. And Richard’s theory was that the Beatles got so frustrated during live shows from being unable to hear themselves that they just said fuck it. All I know that both these bands are from the same era, but listen to some of their early songs side by side. Some of the Beatles shit sounded like they were playing thru an AM radio whilst the Stones always had this fat contemporary sound. I’m just sayin.


Ireland’s U2 is the most important and influential band of the post-punk era, joining ringing guitar rock, punkish independence, Celtic spirituality, innovative production techniques and electronic experimentalism — all held together by singer/lyricist Bono’s transcendent vision and charisma.

I dug U2 until Bono grew a mangina and decided he could save the world.

3.The Grateful Dead

The Dead sold out every show because a Dead show was a socially acceptable place to temporarily take a break from the rat race and try on '60s hippie values without having to live them. People who didn’t do drugs any other time indulged and danced around like pixies to the Dead and their light, rhythmic, pleasant, sometimes inspired, extended musical journeys.

Hmmm whatever, old hippies stank like a muthafucker and patchouli oil freaks me out. Plus all that goddamn circle dancing was just tiresome to look at. Free love was just an excuse to fuck anything with an inverted peehole.

5. Velvet Underground

Brian Eno has famously said that not many people bought the Velvet’s albums when they were originally released, but everyone who did formed a band. After bravely jousting the twin enemies of indifference and open hostility in its lifetime, the Velvet Underground has gradually been embraced as one of the best and most important bands in rock history.

The reason that muthafucker’s went out and formed bands after checking out the Underground was that they figured “goddammit, this shit blows, I can drop acid and play better then this. I guess it goes without sayin that I never got the Velvet Underground.

6. Led Zeppelin

Over a 10-year, nine-album career from 1969-79, Led Zeppelin was the most popular rock group in the world, ultimately selling more than 50 million records in the U.S. alone (more than 200 million worldwide), developing the blues-based power trio-plus-lead singer archetype in many directions including mystical English folk-rock, Middle Eastern-influenced exotica, quirky pop and every manner of heaviness. They also came to symbolize the Dionysian excesses of the rock lifestyle.

For those of you keeping count, Dionysian excesses meant over the top fucking up rock and role lifestyle. Zeppelin parties made most present day rappers and rockers like pabulum puking pussies. Plus who else could sing about Vikings and shit and make a nation of kids run out and buy pants so tight you could see if they were circumcised or not. John Bonham was my hero.

7. Ramones

The Ramones were the American punk band, an endless wellspring of noise, energy, attitude, humor and (sometimes forgotten) great songs, who helped reinvent rock ‘n’ roll when it needed it most in the mid-'70s.

My personal take on the Ramones, “The cat in charge said we can play for ten more minutes, so here’s everything off our newest LP”. (any old punker will understand that one)

8. Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd is the most eccentric and experimental multi-platinum band of the album rock era, creating exceptional cinematic sound sculptures “Meddle,” “Dark Side of the Moon,” “Wish You Were Here,” and the band’s popular apex and conceptual death knell, “The Wall.”

Back in the day I once invited this lesbian guitar player friend over to watch “The Wall” one night. Back then I was running my TV thru part of an old PA system, so it was louder then a muthafucker. She tripped so bad she ended up crying and doing that fetal thing on my couch. The "Wall" fucked her up.

9. Bob Marley and the Wailers

The greatest singer, songwriter, and cultural figure in Jamaican history, Bob Marley brought the righteous message and “positive vibrations” of reggae music to the world, and is the only towering figure of the rock era not from America or the U.K.

There was a time when reggae was all there was, and Marley was the God.

10. Sly and the Family Stone

Sly and the Family Stone made some of the most buoyant and thoughtful music of the late-'60s and early-'70s, uniting and transforming black and white music at a time of highest hope and deepest betrayal in America. Leader Sly Stone personified both extremes, as the truest of believers and a victim of his own disillusionment.

Sly begat Michael Jackson, Sly begat Prince, and Lenny Kravitz should suck Sly’s cock every time he steps on a stage.


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