Thoughts On The Dead

Musings on the Most Ridiculous Band I Can't Stop Listening To

Shitty By The Bay

Fuck Hot Tuna. First of all, their name is just gross. Few foods become less appetizing than tuna at temperature; second, they’re like a side project/all-star jam thing? Kind of? I don’t know what they are: last I checked , the membership was part of the Airplane, two-fifths of the Quicksilver’s road crew, a hobo calling himself Haile Selassie, the actual Haile Selassie, and a volunteer horn section that missed the last gig to go hunting for ‘squatch, which everybody else is pretty sure means running around the woods getting fucked up and no-eye contact gay stuff.

Hot Tuna is to rock and roll supergroups what the West Coast Avengers were to superhero groups.

Fuck the Dead Kennedys. They’re the Bay Area version of the Germs: interesting in theory and tale and legend, but unable to play their instruments or sing.

Fuck the Doobie Brothers. Those guys weren’t related at all. Can’t stand a liar.

Fuck Sly and the Family Stone for precisely the same duplicity.

Fuck the Metallicas. Has any band cruised into their legend status on less? Their first record sounds like cardboard having a seizure. Now their second and (especially) third albums were monsters that would do donuts in the parking lot no matter what that fucking cop says. Master of Puppets just openly stares at the boobies of the girl you like–the girl that EVERYBODY LIKES–and she is digging it.

That’s how good that record was. But then Cliff died, horribly, and the two of them–James and Lars–got someone to bully. You couldn’t push Cliff around (well, they couldn’t) and it was no fun to kick Kirk: he just wanted to play his guitar and watch horror movies and have a questionable hair thing going on. But Jason took it for while, and in a spite of–pique? hazing? tribute?–the two idiots wiped the bass clean off Jason’s first album with them, which was shitty 10-minute-prog rock, anyway.

Deliberately sabotaging your own product out of sheer dickishness: that’s Lou Reed territory. Shocking they ended up producing unlistenable music together.

But Master was good, man.

Fuck Primus. I’m not saying that in the ironic way that their fans do: it’s simply terrible, terrible music. Astonishingly good musicians, but who cares.

Fuck Blackalickious. Kiss my ass: that’s not a word.

Fuck Creedence. The jagoff and the jagoff’s brother and the other two whom I wouldn’t recognize of I were them. I understand that sometimes the action has shifted to Vietnam and it is required by federal law to play CCR, but there’s not much to it. It’s not even equivalent to  log cabin: building one is intricate work–no, Fogerty’s songs are more like sod houses: they are durable, livable, even pleasing. But that’s all there is.

Fuck Linda Ronstadt. Okay, no: she’s outta sight.

Fuck Rancid, even though their lead singer had a killer giant Welcome to London mohawk. They played Boston in the early ’90’s and the guy across the hall protested the chow because they weren’t really punk. I’m sure the argument was more subtle at the time, but that’s what it boiled down to. I’m sticking with my neighbor: fuck Rancid.

Fuck the Hot Licks. Not Dan Hicks: he’s all right, just the Licks. They know why. Conversely…

Fuck Greg Kihn, but not his band.

Fuck Tony, not Toni, OMIGOD FUCK Toné! Mostly for making me find that special fancy ‘e’ for your name. Other stuff, like the ecological horrors you’ve loosed upon an unsuspecting valley! Who will save the innocent landowners and burghers of Nojack’s Wing Pines!

Fuck Journey: I never started to believe. All I can think of is keyboard scarves and wharves and adenoids. And then that replacement singer thing: everything’s outsourced to Asia now.

Fuck Crosby, Stills, and Nash. Crosby, Stills and Nah. Zing, motherfuckers. The ony thing worse would be a Nocal/Socal All-Star Super-Jam with the Eagles because that would be like matter touching antimatter in the Awful White People universe and PBS would still be playing that shit during pledge week. “Ooh, look: George Harrison showed up. Yipee.”

Fuck the Faming Groovies. Seriously: fuck you, Flaming Groovies. Fuck you so much, Flaming Groovies.


  1. You forget Huey Lewis and the News. Their early work was a little too new wave for my tastes, but when Sports came out in ’83, I think they really came into their own, commercially and artistically. The whole album has a clear, crisp sound, and a new sheen of consummate professionalism that really gives the songs a big boost. He’s been compared to Elvis Costello, but I think Huey has a far more bitter, cynical sense of humor.

    Then they released Fore, their most accomplished album. I think their undisputed masterpiece is “Hip to be Square”, a song so catchy, most people probably don’t listen to the lyrics. But they should, because it’s not just about the pleasures of conformity, and the importance of trends, it’s also a personal statement about the band itself.

  2. Don’t forget Steve Miller. He sucks, too!

  3. Sly and the Family Stone had four members of the Stewart family. Sly, Freddie, Rose and Little Sister. They weren’t like the Doobies. Don’t think you can hate on a band where half the members are related by blood.

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