Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's all rock and roll to me

Unfortunately, that Rolling Stone list is the kind of thing you can't get out of your head. So while laying awake last night, several more things came up:

Egregious omissions from the list:
- Chris Robinson of the Black Crowes (you know, Kurt Russell's step-daughter's ex-husband, that guy). If Mick Jagger had never been extruded from the alien birthing tank that produced his self-replicating immortal being, then Chris Robinson would have been the next best thing. He's skinny, he's white, and he can absolutely belt out the blues. His voice is pure rock-n-roll, and he (and the Crowes in general) are underrated.  By the way, "Hard to Handle" was originally an Otis Redding song, and Chris Robinson may actually have made a better version.  But that's a whole different topic.
- Bob Seger.  He's one of these guys that you totally forget about, but you know the words to almost all his songs. "Old-time Rock and Roll" is still getting it done, and he's got that "I was up until 3am drinking bourbon and smoking Marlboro's (the reds, not that pansy-ass filtered crap)" rasp to his voice that screams rock and roll.

Broader comparisons (the list was only rock and roll, but to put all these people in perspective let's review the following)
- Billie Holliday, Ella Fitzgerald, and Sarah Vaughn are all up here (imagine my hand up about my forehead), and all the rest of y-all (yes, you Van Morrison and you Sam Cooke, and especially you John Lennon) are down here (now imagine my hand down around my knees). They didn't sing rock and roll, but at some point it doesn't matter. You name one person on the planet who can do what they could do.
- Nat King Cole. Imagine Bille Holliday, now deepen her voice a little. The only man who could sing like those three. I only wish he had been born a few years later so that he could have put together a Motown kind of catalog, rather than being "stuck" with his standards. (As an aside, let us not confuse Nat King Cole with his low-rent, money-grubbing, no-talent daughter Natalie Cole. There is a special place in hell reserved for her gold-digging thievery of her father's work and the warbling screech that she insisted on poisoning it with. Don't worry, the members of Radiohead can crawl up one another's ass to make room for her.)

I'd say that's it, but we all know this is going to bug me for the next few days, so stay tuned.

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