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The Majesty of Rock

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Well. Well, well, well. If my life has had a theme in the last couple of months, it would be turning dross into gold. There are several examples, and I'm saving them for you, storing them up, because they're just so cool. Certainly, what happened last weekend qualifies. From one only mildly snarky review-- more a damnation by faint praise, actually-- there comes an outpouring of love that would bring Sally Field to her knees. I feel so thoroughly appreciated, so stuffed with love, that I may have to enter rehab. Thank you. I promise to crease and fold my Leonine ego back into its aging, fleshy envelope for the foreseeable future.

Speaking of aging, fleshy envelopes (and who doesn't?) I want to share something with you that fills me with profound joy. It is a front page story on the "Life" section of our local newspaper, The Marietta Times. It's a story about local online YouTube stars.

Disclaimer: As Dave Barry says, I am not making this up. The Marietta Times does that for me.

First is a gentleman, now 42, who was captured on videotape winning a lip-sync contest in 1986. He expertly mouthed the words to Billy Idol's "Rebel Yell," all the while keeping an Elvisoid sneer on his lips. Doing so, he became the Southeast Champion Lip-Syncer. But he failed (by 1% of the call-in votes) to become the National Lip-Syncing Champion. But all is not lost, because the video of his performance is now available on YouTube. It's so easy to forget, watching this electrifying video, that Derek is not singing. Or playing the guitar he picks up for his "solo." That he is not actually the real Billy Idol, his very own self. If you are able to watch the whole video, he doffs his leather bolero toward the end.Bet you won't have much trouble figuring out which picture is from 1986. Derek is now the owner of a public-relations company in Charlotte, NC. He will live forever as the Southeast Champion Lip-Syncer on YouTube, and in my heart. Hotness, thou art Derek in 1986. This constitutes breaking news in Marietta, Ohio.

What really arrested me about this article, though, was the photo of two area rockers that graced the top of the page. They're from Parkersburg, West Virginia, right across the Ohio River from us. For your viewing pleasure, I have located this video performance of their original song, "Growin' Old," on YouTube. I know that I'm really pushing the boundaries of a nature blog reader here, but at about 1:30 in this video, there is a moment when the bass player (the large guy) lays his head tenderly on the shoulder of the lead singer (the little dude who looks like a lady) and keeps it there, a cigarette smoldering between Big Guy's lips the whole while. Bill's take on that is that Big Guy wants to make sure he's in the video. I have to watch this video a couple of times a day because I bark like a seal every time he does that. Let's have a closer look at that picture. They are rockin' on with their bad selves.
Notice the cutline. It says, "Submitted Photo." So that means that the band, who shall remain nameless in this post (since their loyal fans are doubtless legion) gave the Times this photo, as representative of their undeniable majesty.

In sharing this small-town moment with you, I am staying true to my BlogArtist's Statement, to make room in my life for the things that bring me joy. These things include radiant sunsets, fossils in streambeds, flights of snow geese and the resonant purr of cranes. They also include The Marietta Times, white socks, old sneakers, and the sheer power and absolute Majesty of Rock.


well now, that was totally different... what next, a post on quantum mechanics, or maybe something on the Dalai Lama...?
anyway, YouTube is a great place to look for old 'rock' in all its forms.

Martha Quinn & Billy Idol....that brings back some good memories from the old days when I was a huge MTV fan. Thanks Julie.

Derek. Ooooo. In Charlotte now. Hmmm. I would have loved to see him (singing or not) on American Idol tonight competing against the rest of the girls. Hee-haw!

Tickled with this :o)

Ah, small town newspapers. One of my sons, who had been living in Frederick, MD came home and was reading the local paper, the Jackson Herald. He started laughing so hard I had to ask what was so funny. He pointed to the headline: "No hole found under the Ravenswood pool."

That was the top news of the week. Compared to the four murders that headlined the papers in Frederick, I guess our "news" was pretty tame.

Posted by Granny Sue February 19, 2008 at 8:01 PM

I am so lmao right now...a cracker hair band...yeah! I miss me the Ohio Valley.

Ms. Z you are da bomb.

Fffwhoooaah! And I almost fell off my chair when I saw that part of the stage he was performing on ws a giant replica of the actual Swatch I used to wear back in the day. Admit it, Julie, you used to compete in air bands, didn't you? Even though you CAN sing. Everybody was doing it. (I used to be Bono, for a few minutes in 1986. Yes, mullet and all.)

Trix, I was cackling as I thought of you. Through the magic of the Internet, you can transport yourself to a skanky WV bar. You might want to see the band "rippin up an acoustic 7 bridges road" at this link. Or, you might not.

Wendi, I have to confess that at the time this video was made, I was sequestered deep in the CT. countryside, and my idea of fun was driving great distances to go contra dancing. I missed the 80's, musically; I couldn't stand the smashing snare drums. Retreated into traditional Irish and bluegrass for the decade, and poked my head back out when I met Bill in '92. Looking back, it seems that wasn't such a bad time to hibernate.

Rock on, Julie!

holy moldy oldie.

Contra dancing, huh? Ever meet up with a group called Nightingale? Even if your musical tastes have widened, I think you would like these folks, one of whom is an old friend.

I find the other guitar player's mid-song cigarette management oddly compelling. These are the kind of guys who think "This is Spinal Tap" is a drama.

Thanks for sharing the free joy. You rock.

I cannot find anyone to rock with me...I'm 48 and I like Nirvana and Black Sabbath and the Pixies.

Submitted many ads to Craig's dice, I'm too old, I guess.

April, one is never too old to rock. (Little Richard still ain't too old to go "Whoooooo!!")
Methinks you need to crank up Southern Culture on the Skids and dance to "Camel Walk."

I suspect the other subtext of "submitted photo" is "We didn't take this photo, we didn't pick this photo, it was thrust upon us and if we wanted to illustrate the story we have to use it, but we don't really approve of it."

Long live rock!!!!

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