Sep 272010

John Wetton Interview Coming Friday, October 1

Believe us, we care what the groundbreaking popular vote said regarding a poll that resulted from an analysis and discussion to determine – once and for allThe Sexiest Man in Prog-Rock. We care what the humble subject at the root of this heretofore-unexamined topic ultimately may have felt about all the attention he received. We cherish the new friends we’ve made in the last couple of weeks, and we welcome you to our daily gatherings and passionate discussions of rock-related topics, both serious and inane. We’re not sure how the other finalists in our quest to determine – once and for allThe Sexiest Man in Prog-Rock may have felt, but among those we attempted to contact, only go-to bassist/vocalist of the Progressive and Art Rock scene (Asia, King Crimson, Roxy Music, UK, Family, and many more) John Wetton responded to the ardent support of his fan base, summing up the consideration for this honor as follows:

“I’m delighted to be deemed a cute pig in the litter.”

We should all feel delighted to have finally established for all the world’s rock snobs, who have long considered prog-rock the sole domain of stoners and Dungeons & Dragons dudes, that the ladies dig prog-rockers on their own terms, including reasons as earthy as the music may be cerebral or ethereal. Just as cool, a number of Townsmen, regardless of their sexual preferences, felt comfortable discussing the importance of prog-rock bands containing a couple of good-looking guys to pull off those 17/8 time signatures. That’s what I call progressive rock music discussion! Most of all, however, we should feel delighted at the announcement that John Wetton has graciously agreed to subject himself to a Rock Town Hall Interview!

John Wetton: The Rock Town Hall Interview, Coming Friday, October 1.

The interview will cover John’s unique career and, hopefully, stimulate thought and discussion about the inner workings of some of the most-distinctive bands of the 1970s, the difference between “Prog Rock” and “Art Rock,” and the possible threat posed by Punk and New Wave bands. John also gives us a few additional seconds to answer the hard-hitting, rapid-fire questions of Rock Town Hall’s patented Dugout Chatter.

Thanks, John, and congratulations to leading popular vote-getter Carl Palmer and other runners-up Greg Lake, Keith Emerson (yes, the band should have been named PLE!), Chris Squire, and David Gilmour! Finally, thanks to the loyal and enthusiastic followers of one of rock’s most ambitious music scenes for making this silly notion turn into something of lasting value!

Sep 232010

Chicks dig odd time signatures!

Our ongoing poll to determine the Sexiest Man in Prog-Rock has garnered interest across the globe. Out of the gates it looked to be a showdown between the the Zelig of the Prog/Art Rock world, stylishly tressed bassist John Wetton, and former model and Pink Floyd hunk David Gilmour. Then, without warning, cape-wearing Yes bassist Chris Squire and ELP’s boyishly macho drummer Carl Palmer jumped ahead of Gilmour and put some heat on Wetton. With a record number of votes pouring in, Wetton and Squire are neck and neck! Before more votes are posted, let’s consider the leaders in this heretofore-inconceivable showdown.

I know this discussion will make some of you manly men uncomfortable, but these prog-rock legends aren’t as smooth as Ken dolls down there, nor are their fans a collection of plastic Ken and Barbie dolls. For the rock ‘n roll record, I suggest you man up and give these gents the once-over they deserve. It’s clear that only Rock Town Hall is fit to determine, once and for all, the Sexiest Man in Prog-Rock. In-depth analyses of our leading vote-getters appear on page 2!

Aug 242010

My friends, it took me long enough, but I finally manned up and spent a few days with that Prince deep cutz collection that hrrundivbakshi demanded that I confront for Hear Factor. It was one of the most difficult series of listening sessions I’ve ever encountered, but I am a better man for it – and you, HVB, are a better man for having put me through it.

E. Pluribus, you’re a good egg, too – and thanks for never making me sit through anything as painful as those Prince deep cutz. However, I need to call you into this, too, because you like to make a big stink about how exquisite your tastes are, yet you can’t even begin to appreciate anything remotely in the “Art Rock” camp, can you? I’m calling you into this alongside hrrundivbakshi because I think he can put a little heat on you. I think HVB has it in him to find a bearable angle on Roxy Music. I doubt you do, but I hope he will shame you into opening your mind a little bit. As painful as it may be for one of you to budge, I’m confident that your need to distiguish yourselves from each other will result in one of you expressing something profound and fascinating, something more than what we may expect.

Now, if you have some time, I want to know if either of you have it in you to appreciate Roxy Music. I’m offering a completely unbalanced sampling of two songs each from my favorite two Roxy Music album for your analysis, gut responses, and possible pleasure. In case you need a visual, I’ve also placed a video of the band playing another favorite from their debut album. I feel this will demonstrate the band’s usefulness in the research that is done in RTH Labs. Please take all the time you need, or at least as long as the tracks last. Let me know if you have any questions. Thank you.

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Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

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Don’t think the rest of you have not been summoned as well. I urge those of you who’ve stayed on the sidelines through past discussions about Roxy Music to step forward. Do you want to be part of the angry mob forever, or do you want to stand out and be your own person?

May 142010

Townsman andyr and his wife have reported the following series of Rock Crimes. Sensitive viewers are cautioned before proceeding to the video evidence, which was captured by the iPhone of an anonymous audience member. The authorities are currently interviewing witnesses. Please feel free to provide your own testimony in the Comments section for this post. Thank you, andyr family, for your bravery and good citizenship in reporting these crimes.

Watch video evidence of Rock Crimes of flash mob proportions…after the jump!
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Mar 082010

Let he who is without a Rock Crime record cast the first Rolling Stone!

Whether your personal Rock Crimes are big or small, we know you’ve committed at least one. If nothing else, you were born with original an Rock Crime. It’s time you ‘fess up and come clean with a Rock Crime you’ve committted. Those who confess and apologize will be granted immunity. Those who continue to run from The Truth will be suspects in the next sweep of the Nebraska Manhunt!


Aug 182009

Nothing suspicious in their cocktails.

Townsman Andyr raised this question with me last week concerning J. Geils Band, a long-time, hard-working, journeyman, Boston party rock band best known for its Jagger-esque frontman and energetic live shows but always underachieving in the studio that suddenly turned out two albums of polished, radio-friendly hits.

At first I dismissed my friend’s suspicions as the result of the dangerous practice of mixing love for rock ‘n roll with love for baseball. Over the next few days, however, I went searching for possible ties to members of J. Geils Band and performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs).

Although the band was tight with San Francisco promoter Bill Graham and played the Fillmore West numerous times, I did not find any ties to the Bay area’s nascent BALCO labs scene. J. Geils himself was always a sturdy looking guy, but judging by estimates of his head size over the years, there were no changes. In fact, with one exception, each member of J. Geils Band seemed to maintain a pretty stable Look and role within the band.
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Aug 112009

I was disappointed to hear that Jesse Sandoval, the drummer from The Shins, was in his words “fired” from the band. He tells his side of the story in an article in the Portland Mercury. While he seems to have a bit of a complicated relationship with band leader James Mercer, I’m in agreement he was fired in a not-so-professional way. I’m sure it was awkward for all involved but still call it what it is and forget the “…I’m going in a different direction” statements.

I particularly like Sandoval’s drumming. Admittedly it was quirky but I think it added interest to what might have been some otherwise average indie rock songs. I’m not sure what Mercer will do next or what it might sound like but it will be missing the unique combination of his Shins bandmates and Sandoval’s drumming.

So the question is What are some other bands that lost players, either fired or quit, that ruined the “magic?” Can we say David Lee Roth out of Van Halen? Eno out of Roxy Music (maybe not)? Can you offer some suggestions?

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