Tuesday, September 28, 2010

ALICE COOPER - Saginaw, MI 1978

Aaaaand I'm back!

Yes, my lovely son Luke got himself born on September the 4th, and all is well! Thanks to everyone who visited in the interim. Life is grand...well, except for one thing:

As of today's preposterous nominations announcement, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has offically lost all credibility. Forever. As in, permanently jumped the shark, never to recover.

By nominating the poodle-maned clowns in Bon Jovi before ever having nominated Rush (not once; not to mention Randy Newman, The Zombies, Yes, Todd Rundgren, Deep Purple, The Smiths and countless others left waiting in the wings), the Hall of Lame has committed a serious crime against music and must no longer be taken seriously again. Joel Peresman, Jon Landau, Jann Wenner, and every last member of the feckless nominating committee should all go kill themselves at once.

I can only imagine what kind of sleazy, schmoozy music industry political bullshit led to such a calamitous decision, since it certainly wasn’t based on artistic merit; in Bon Jovi’s case, there simply is none. Even if one were to argue -- as I’m sure some nameless, highly-paid idiot did -- that giving Bon Jovi the nod is based purely on their (mystifyingly) enduring popularity, then bands from Kiss to Chicago to (if the slot had to go to an '80s hair-metal group) Def Leppard or Motley Crue would be more qualified than the vapid and personality-free Bon Jovi. At least Kiss has the makeup, costumes and pyro to make them distinctive.

I don't care how many "units" they've shifted, or how many "sheds" they somehow keep filling with their philistine fans: Bon Jovi is as musically worthless a group as has ever existed. They are mediocrity incarnate, corporate rock at its most generic, the perfect example of everything that went wrong with mainstream rock in the benighted age of Reagan. They embody everything that Nirvana came along to wipe out. Bon Jovi has not recorded or performed a single line of lyric or note of music that is not a complete cliché. Possessing not an iota of imagination, intelligence, wit, artistry, originality, or genuine emotion, with no musical value whatsoever, these insipid cheese merchants are the sonic equivalent of McDonald's.

Now, lots of people eat at McDonald's -- but no one gives McDonald's an award, because McDonald's food doesn't deserve awards and everyone is smart enough to know this, including McDonald's.

Apparently the Schlock Hall is not this smart. Lest we forget that Black Sabbath and The Stooges -- monumentally influential bands that were instrumental in creating entire genres of rock music -- had to wait 10 years and 16 years, respectively, to be inducted. But not the geniuses of Bon Jovi. In only their second year of eligibility, it's "Step right up, boys!" (And don't even get me started on TV actor/fitness pitchman LL Cool J, another utterly unworthy nominee, who is not now and never was a musician.)

Following the debased precedent now set by the Schlock Hall, I eagerly await the awarding of next year's Best Picture Academy Award to The Last Airbender.

Anyway, congrats are due to 2011 nominee Alice Cooper. He plays actual rock music, and thus is vastly more worthy of induction to this pitiful institution than almost all of this year's other nominees.

Wendler Arena - Saginaw, MI - October 5, 1978 (SBD)

(With thanks to Viva Les Bootlegs.)