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Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Rockin' Classics

There are timeless classics in all genres of music.  In rock, a music giant, classics abound, but only a few throughout the decades remain timeless.  The following are my favorite rock classics.

The Rolling Stones.

I would be sorely remiss if The Rolling Stones did not make this list.  After all, they were considered the "World's Greatest Rock & Roll Band" in the same decade they were formed in (www.vh1.com/artists/az/rolling_stones/bio).  They were the most popular band of their generation and continue to influence future generations (Id.).  One of the best rock songs by this ageless band is "Rock and a Hard Place" (Jump Back - The Best of The Rolling Stones '71-'93).  The beat is standard rock style.  The electric & bass guitars and drums provide fun instrumentals.  The lyrics are catchy.  Nothing really stands out (VH1.com admitted that The Rolling Stones did not always have "blockbuster" hits) (Id.).  Yet when this song was originally released in 1989, rock as a music genre was experimenting with a variety of styles, all finding their definitive places in a long line.  Therefore, every aspect of "Rock and a Hard Place" stood out and appealed to many.  These many passed their interest down to the next generation, who will pass down the same interest to the next generation, and so on.  The Rolling Stones, then, is a classic.

Rush.

Rush is an acquired taste upon realized difference from vocal similarity to Supertramp.  Rush's style is incredibly unique.  Such songs as "Tom Sawyer" cannot stay in the same beat and tone.  Next to the band's edge, this inability to stay focused in a traditional sense allows Rush to stand out.  Rush, then, is a classic.

Van Halen.

Oh yes.  A must, even according to veteran guitarist Andy Taylor (formerly of Duran Duran), whose clear interst is so stated in a documentary on the Live from London dvd.  One word to sum up Van Halen in my eyes - "Eruption" (The Best of Van Halen, Vol 1).  Eddie Van Halen's ability to move his fingers that fast and that precisely alone makes Van Halen an instant classic in my blog books.

Aerosmith.

An American ageless band.  After all, if The Rolling Stones claim title to "World's Greatest Rock & Roll Band," then it is only befitting that Aerosmith claims title on the other side of the Atlantic with "America's Greatest Rock & Roll Band," being the best-selling American rock band of all time (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aerosmith).  And like The Rolling Stones, Aerosmith has influenced future generations as well (Id.).  My all-time Aerosmith favorite is "Back In the Saddle."  The instrumental anticipation at the beginning of the song leads to classic Steven Tyler vocals that do not let down the listener.  This song likewise provides the definition of rock edge.  My mother's generation knows Aerosmith through "Dream On" and many others.  Two generations of fans do make Aerosmith a classic definitely.

The Eagles.

I chose this band to add to my list because like Aerosmith, The Eagles strike a chord in multiple generations.  My mother and I share an interest in one of the band's most well-known songs, "Life in the Fastlane" (Eagles Greatest Hits, Vol. 2).  I am the ultimate prude and yet I like this song and its most grown-up lyrics.  Indeed, to have this affect, The Eagles must be a classic.

This list is brief and does not touch on the many, many other timeless classics around the globe.

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