Posts Tagged ‘The Edge’

Dear Loyal Readers: Thank you for your many compassionate comments after we lost our dog, Storm Small. They’re much appreciated. Though we plan to recruit a new dog soon, we will never replace our little man. He was the comeback kid and our most valuable player.

But now I have to get my act together, because in one week I begin the Clarion West Writers Workshop Write-a-thon. I’ve pledged to write an hour a day and double the size of my novel by the time this marathon ends on August 2. Two people have already put up honest-to-God money to support me, which means no screwing around, I have to do it. All hail my supporters:

Karen G. Anderson
Mitch Katz

They will receive an original piece of Run-DMSteve art, which I will create once this thing is over, plus my ever-lasting, ever-lovin’ thanks!

During the course of the Write-a-thon I will post every day on this blog with something (I don’t know what yet) about my progress. Your comments are welcome, however snarky, and I thank you in advance for reading along. See you on Sunday night, June 23.

What’s so hard about Web 2.0?
In April, at a social-media marketing conference here in Portland, I attended a presentation about how even an idiot without a camera can make a video and post it on YouTube. The guy was right because now this idiot has done just that!

Random Pick of the Week
Roy Orbison, Mystery Girl (1989)
It’s about time I said something positive about Jeff Lynne (of ELO infamy) and here it is. He was one of the founders of The Traveling Wilburys. The Traveling Wilburys (Lynne, George Harrison, Tom Petty, Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison, and Jim Keltner) gave Orbison a new lease on his musical life. Lynne then went on to produce Orbison’s farewell, Mystery Girl, released the year he died.

Roy Orbison’s voice belonged in a higher league. When he recorded Mystery Girl, Orbison still had most of that voice left, and though the material at hand was inconsistent he did a fine job with “You Got It” (written by Lynne, Petty, and Orbison) and “She’s a Mystery to Me” (Bono and The Edge). Either of these songs would’ve made a fitting B-side to “Oh Pretty Woman,” and what greater compliment can you give? So thank you, Jeff Lynne.

Random Pan of the Week
Macklemore, “Thrift Shop” (2011)
Oh come on. “This is fucking awesome” is not a lyric. Macklemore’s vocabulary never gets out of second gear and he wouldn’t know a metaphor if it hit him with an impact equivalent to one U.S. ton of lead. “I’m a take your grandpa’s style/I’m a take your grandpa’s style/No for real – ask your grandpa – can I have his hand-me-downs?” The grandpa in the video is wearing the same clothes my Dad wears! Eat your heart out, kid – someday I’ll inherit all of Dad’s clip-on ties from the ’60s.

But the video is fun.

I’m not impressed by a white rapper named Macklemore. The guy to watch is Wallpaper. (OK, it’s four guys. Shut up.) Have you heard “#STUPiDFACEDD”? “White boy wasted/gluestick pasted.” This is fucking awesome!

Rebel Soul
Kid Rock

I first encountered Kid Rock when Devil Without a Cause (1998) served up two mega-hits, “Bawitdaba” and “Cowboy,” both of which are totally awesome if you’re a teenager and clueless. I thought of him again in 2004, when my boss at the time and his wife went to a Kid Rock concert. After the show they were invited backstage, where they persuaded Mr. Rock to autograph Mrs. Boss’ ass. The next day at work, Mr. Boss proudly shared photos of this historic event. His wife had a nice ass.

I’d rather contemplate derrière marketing than Kid Rock, one of an octet of prominent male musicians who enjoy wearing stupid hats. The other seven are:


Elvis Costello

Bob Dylan

jack and edge
Jack White (left) and The Edge (right)


and Deadmau5.

Honorable Mention, Bandana Division:

Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band Perform On "Today"
Miami Steve.

(The hatless gentlemen are Jimmy Page and guess who.)

But when The New Yorker profiled Kid Rock, I knew it was time to turn my attention his way again. From the pages of my favorite magazine (Model Railroader is the runner-up) I learned that KR is a white boy who started with rap but transformed himself into a rocker who loves Motown, Mitch Ryder, ’70s arena rock, Hank Williams, and outlaw country. His new album, Rebel Soul, was available for a free listen on Rhapsody, and as the operative word here was “free,” I took it out for a spin.

The results: Mixed!

You can’t charge Kid Rock with not knowing his history – the man vacuums up music like Beck or Prince. “Detroit, Michigan” appropriates the guitar line from Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger” and threatens at times to burst into Bob Seger’s “Old Time Rock ’n Roll.” The foot-tapping “Celebrate” has the same drive as “Ballroom Blitz” without the dopey speaking parts and with a big ’70s guitar hook I can’t identify. The jaunty “Redneck Paradise” could almost be “Werewolves of London,” a song KR digs – he mashes it up with “Sweet Home Alabama” on “All Summer Long” (Rock n Roll Jesus, 2007).

Let’s be thankful that Kid Rock never imprinted on Chicago or Men Without Hats. It’s bad enough that for one frightening moment on “Cocaine and Gin” I thought I was about to hear Don Henley sing “The Last Resort.”

The album’s highlight was “Cucci Galore.” Ladies and gentlemen, this is the song Kid Rock was born to write. It’s a no-holds-barred study of the Playboy Mansion, in which KR deftly rhymes “edible bikinis” with “chocolate martinis.” “Cucci Galore” is by far the most interesting song on Rebel Soul. Musically, it’s an exciting blend of hip hop and hard rock. Also, KR genuinely cares about Playmates in their natural habitat, more than he does about any of his Dukes of Hazzard preoccupations. I give him points for his sincerity and his musical eclecticism, but I’m taking them all away for the dumbass lyrics.

Consumer report
You can dance to some of Rebel Soul, you can skip the country tracks, and it rocks in several places, though you’ve heard rockers like these a million times, often from the band that played your employer’s holiday party. Kid Rock surprised me – he can do a lot of what AC/DC, Bad Company, Humble Pie, The Cult, Bob Seger, The Jesus and Mary Chain, The Black Crowes, Stone Temple Pilots, Korn, Limp Bizkit, and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club can do, not as well but sometimes not far off. While that’s an impressive entry on anyone’s résumé, I’m not giving him the green light to autograph Special D.

I’m not going to replay Rebel Soul. Nor will I kill time with lengthy celebrity profiles in The New Yorker when I should be writing my novel. But no way am I skipping this:

MR The Sex Issue