Skip to main content

Hail hail to the good times

Malcolm Young died last Saturday at the age of 64 and I believe he squeezed a lot of life out of those years. AC/DC is always referred to as an Australian band but the Young brothers were born in Scotland and though they did emigrate down under as tykes they carried a lot of Glasgow right along with them (Bon Scott was also a Scottish immigrant) .
Malcolm Young, who has died aged 64 after suffering from dementia, was the driving force behind AC/DC, the rock outfit that sold more than 200m albums over 40 years to become one of the highest-grossing bands of all time. His brother Angus, the band’s lead guitarist, may have been the most recognisable character in AC/DC, largely thanks to his habit of wearing school uniform on stage, but it was Malcolm whose inventive rhythm guitar and storming riffs formed the backbone of the band’s sound. Malcolm often took the crucial decisions about the band’s strategy, and he became notorious for abruptly firing various managers, producers and band members. 
You read that right. 200m (m as in Million) records. In America Back in Black is the 6th most purchased album of all time, but World Wide we're talking huge numbers. It's a long way to the top (if you wanna rock 'n' roll) and Malcolm Young made it to the tip-top. These lads pushed a lot of vinyl over the years and breathed the rarified air of Michael Jackson, Pink Floyd and Whitney Houston which isn't bad for a pair of 5' tall factory workers from Scotland - not bad at all.


But to what end? 

It's not like Malcolm Young will ever make it onto #RockStarMountRushmore and all that rock'n and roll'n cost him his mind and life before he could start cashing his social security check. Oh well, the joy is in the journey, as they say, even if that journey is along the highway to hell. R&R is a Young mans game and as they age these Rock Stars loose the testosterone that puts the TNT in their sound. The spirit of the thing diminishes once you've played Shot Down in Flames for the 50th time, the 100th time, the 1000th time - hey man, it's a job. And as you age the job gets harder and harder to do even if you become more practiced and "professional" the energy isn't there anymore and even if you can summon the energy using chemicals or some insane workout/dietary formula you still look stupid with your thinning hair and old bones gyrating on stage like you don't even know how old you are. It's sad to see these rock n' roll stars die young but it's even worse to see them age and refuse to give up the stage to younger more dynamic acts that make the music the way the music is supposed to be made - full of piss and vinegar. The young AC/DC (with Bon) was what it's all about, but that was 40 years ago and all those millions of records sold can't change the truth.

My Rock Star Mount Rushmore is:
Bo Diddley - for reasons explained here KOTCB Purple Smoke on the Water
Eddie Cochran - Not Elvis, Eddie - took rock n' roll to the UK (including Scotland)
Pete Townshend - "A Quick One, While He's Away" released Dec. 1966
Frank Zappa - for reasons explained here KOTCB The Graduate (was your college professor)

Rock n' Roll lived for about 10 years 1957 - 1967 and everything that followed was derivative vultures picking at the carcass.  

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson

She was "sexy", but "too much hard work."

I'm a regular Fox & Friends viewer (mostly in protest of the other insipid morning programs like Today and Good Morning America) so over the years I've gotten to know Gretchen Carlson pretty well. Stuck between Steve and Brian she always seemed a prudish scold with an irritating, self-righteous demeanor that I simply put up with because I figured some people in the Fox audience actually liked her persona. It was obvious that Steve and Brian did not, but they were stuck with her like so many talking heads and had to make the best of it - which they did. Besides, she was no worse than any of the other women on morning show TV - I mean, you're only going to find a certain kind of person to do this kind of work and that kind of person is the Gretchen Carlson kind. Then, one day, she was gone and replaced by Elisabeth Hasselbeck and the F&F ratings began to climb, and climb and climb - in two months viewershi…

The Democracy Quirk

Let it be said that Politico is one of the most worthless web sites with clout on the internet - it's like the Washington Post after a night of hard drinking in the Georgetown bars that passed out on a friends couch. Predictable and stupid at the same time - Also, the editors appear to despise democracy as a political science and as practiced here in the USA. Their latest "explanation" for the Trump phenomenon takes aim at the voters and their knowing ignorance which can be easily explained by the Dunning-Kruger Effect. The article written by shrink/educator David Dunning illuminates a big, glaring problem in any democracy, and that is, "we all run the risk of being too ill-informed to notice when our own favored candidates or national leaders make catastrophic misjudgments." Shit, now you tell us, for surely this is not a problem unique to 2016 and probably was in effect in 2000 and 1980 and 1968 and so on...
But as a psychologist who has studied human behavi…

Running Fence 2

You probably know that the Congress (specifically the Senate) and the POTUS are at loggerheads over Federal funding for the Big Beautiful Wall to be built along the US southern boarder. The reasons for this impasse are long and complex so a quick review of how we got here might be in order.

The Elvis from Queens glided down the escalator at Trump Tower (corner of 57th & 5th) and declared to America and the World that he intended to build A Great Wall across the southern boarder when he became POTUS because this alternate speech was never going to happen (KOTCB Alternate Universe 06/15/2015)A few weeks later candidate Trump was presented with a big fat brick of pain and suffering that served as the cornerstone of his campaign (KOTCB Dirty Sanchez)The physical Wall served as a curative slap in the face of the DC establishment who had, over the years, constructed an elaborate Folly Wall in place of the real thing (KOTCB Decius drops the mic)The idea of the Big Beautiful Wall began to…