You know what I miss? Songs about ROCK. I don’t mean songs THAT rock; we all can name five songs off the top of our heads that totally fucking rock. In fact, I’ll try it right now:
1. Kiss – “Detroit Rock City”
2. Jane’s Addiction – “Stop”
3. The Kinks – “All Day and All of the Night” (guitar solo)
4. Led Zeppelin – “Black Dog”
5. Archers of Loaf – “Sickfile”
Jesus, that was easy. Anyway, I’m talking about the songs that take on the issue of “rock” itself, and the myriad ways one can and can’t rock, and the proper environment to do so. Back in the ’70s, before I was really conscious about my own ability to rock, it was apparently a subject of much discourse.
Let’s not confuse this with Billy Joel’s “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me,” which is not about rock, it’s about “talking about rock” – an act far too removed to fit anywhere near the act of rocking.
The Who, in the song “Long Live Rock,” found themselves fit to proclaim “Rock is dead! Long live rock!” in the old-fashioned role as town crier for rock itself. Neither the Beatles nor the Rolling Stones ever had the gumption to make that kind of statement about rock, or even rocking.
Kiss expressed their interest in “rock[ing] all night and party[ing] every day,” which signaled their belief that partying and rocking were exclusive acts. This is corroborated by Sammy Hagar, who informed his listeners that there was “Only One Way to Rock,” which, frankly, I found a little limiting. He even said that 8:05 was the time to rock (I assume PM).
By far, the ballsiest song about the act of rocking was AC/DC’s “For Those About to Rock (We Salute You)” – which, with the cannons firing at the end, has to be one of the greatest statements ever made. Assumedly, if you had to ask whether or not you were about to rock, you probably weren’t.
In regards to rocking, you knew who you were. I also salute those who are about to rock, or those who have been rocking for some time. ROCK and FUCKING ROLL!!!