Dee Dee [Ramone] is the best punk example of a rock and roll star in part because of that combination of his talent and his personal style, but especially because it’s hard to imagine that he could have succeeded at anything else. The Sex Pistols famously screamed “No future!” at the end of “God Save the Queen.” People made a big deal about how progressive it was that a hit band could sarcastically rage about social conditions. But the noteworthy thing to me about the “no future” subject isn’t the Sex Pistols’ anger about their boring prospects as citizens, but rather that the lack of a future is an unacknowledged foundation of rock and roll. There is no future in being an adolescent, and rock and roll is the music of adolescence.
Rock and roll is the only art form at which teenagers are not only capable of excelling but that actually requires that one be a teenager, more or less, to practice it at all. This is the way that “punk” uniquely embodies rock and roll. It explicitly asserts and demonstrates that the music is not about virtuosity. Rock and roll is about natural grace, about style and instinct. Also the inherent physical beauty of youth. You don’t have to play guitar well or, by any conventional standard, sing well to make great rock and roll; you just have to have it, have to be able to recognize it, have to get it. And half of that is about simply being young, meaning full of crazed sex drive and sensitivity to the object of romantic and sexual desire, and full of anger about being condescended to by adults, and disgust and anger about all the lies you’re being fed, and all the control you’ve been subjected to, by those complacent adults. And a deep desire for some fun. And, though rock and roll is about being cool, you don’t have to be cool to make real rock and roll - sometimes the most innocuous and pathetic fumblers only become graced by the way they shine in songs. And this is half of what makes the music the art of adolescence - that it doesn’t require any verifiable skill. It’s all essence, and it’s available to those who, to all appearances, have nothing.
Richard Hell, from I Dreamed I Was A Very Clean Tramp (via rustbeltjessie)
Fuck. Leave it to Richard Hell. I’ve been saying shit like this for years. I once told a mildy infamous Norfolkian that “Rock n’ roll is fucking. A Ramones beat,..it’s sex. Pure and simple. If you don’t get that, put the goddamned thing down and go have a gallery opening or whatever…” Swagger doesn’t speak scene points, and being a contrarian negates real attitude.
(Fuck me running. I loved this movie when I was a kid. And Kelly LeBrock was my first crush. Still to this day love smart assed, exotic brunettes with smokey voices. Although I totes also crushed on Martha Plimpton in Goonies. Nerdy is hot too, y’know.)
R.I.P. Natasha. I’ve always regarded the QOTSA/Desert Sessions camp to be something of an anomaly in that it combined some of my favorite artists of the 90’s into this clusterfuck potpourri of contemporary iconoclasts. Josh, Nick, & Alfredo of Kyuss, Lanegan of Screaming Trees, Polly Jean Harvey, Jeordie White, Troy Van Leeuwen of Failure, Natasha & Alain of Eleven, and a bevy of others. All artists I’ve listened to since teen hood, still creating more than valid art. That’s all I myself have ever wanted to do; make great art. Salut.
Here it is, folks. Saddle Tramp #003 custom effects pedal board for Ross “Awful” Mackey of Machete Western, hand made by yours truly. Also cookin up ideas for A-frame & rack style guitar stands that’ll look like your Daddy’s gun cabinet. Maybe even some silly plaques that might resemble the ole dirty humored nic nacs in your Mama’s kitchen, too. Leather, brass, burned lettering, hand aged/polished finishes for the discerning culture vulture. Saddle Tramp Custom Woodworks!
Let’s fuck. Because fucking is what rock n’ roll is about. The very phrase is an early euphemism for sex. “I want you to rock me baby, rock me all night long”, “I said roll me baby, roll me till you make me feel.” If it doesn’t make me wanna fight, fuck, or drive fast, then what good is it exactly? It’s why I denounced hardcore. It’s why I’ve never feigned being “spooky.” It’s why I like the first three ZZ Top records. It’s why I want nothing to do with this ineffectual wave of tra la la fucktwat indie pop bullshit. It’s why hipster dickshines in dapper vests playing mandolins and old timey parlour guitars do dick all nothing for me. Paint me a ham-handed, groin-governed white trash neanderthal, then watch me juggle all the imaginary fucks I give.