I like Aerosmith. There. I said it. Should I be embarrassed about this? Or should I be more embarrassed by the fact that before this weekend I could not have named a single Aerosmith song?
Okay, that is not entirely true because I was familiar with Walk This Way - but only because of Run-DMC (Da Kings of Queens - hollah Muller!) And I guess somewhere amidst the pop culture databases in my mind I recognised that Dude Looks Like a Lady was sung by the only man with lips larger than Jagger. But that was really the extent of it.
While I am shaming myself, I may as well admit that I can still only name two Led Zeppelin songs: Stairway to Heaven (duh) and D'Yer Maker. I only know the latter because one of the cooks in the restaurant I worked in throughout college sang it ALL THE TIME. As far as naming the members of this seminal band ... well, aside from Robert Plant I can't. I even just cheated and googled just to make sure Plant was actually a member.
I guess I just missed the whole 1970s anthem rock bus. Alice Cooper, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, and even Van Halen could appear at my dinner table and I wouldn't have a clue who they were. Ditto Pink Floyd and The Who, though I can at least name some of their songs.
It's only because I spent my young teen years at the roller rink that I know the words to so many Journey Ballads. Now those guys knew how to sing about the young love I experienced.
Anyway, I always thought I was pretty well schooled in music, but damn! It's like graduating high school in America without learning who Abe Lincoln or Thomas Jefferson were! (As an aside, I recently dated a guy who rudely accused me of just that.)
So, because an old and dear friend of mine is still, after all these years, in love with Steven Tyler I have discovered Aerosmith. What is that, like 20 years behind the curve? Anyway, she sent me a link to a Youtube video and that led, as Youtube links always do, to a couple of hours of video watching. By the time Liv Tyler and Alicia Silverstone stripped in Crazy I was hooked. I went out and bought some of their CDs yesterday and spent today writing papers to the soundtrack I apparently had muted during my youth.
The only thing I can offer in defense of my musical steet cred is the fact that while I missed most of the Big Boys, I did amass quite a collection of obscure punk, old rock-a-billy, classical and old- school rap. During my music industry years I had the opportunity to meet a lot of cool musicians who became even bigger after I met them - though, uh, not due to any actions on my part.
I do own bragging rights to the following encounters - though to explain how they occurred would take waaaay too long:
* Playing with baby Jack Osbourne backstage while Ozzy gave interviews.
* Discussing how very religous people are in the Bible belt with Bono.
* Dying the hair of Fixx's bass player in the public restroom of the arena before they played.
* Todd Rundgren sat in with Lords of the New Church, which was cool, but backstage he would not admit to us he was Todd Rundgren. (Conversley, Ted Nugent used to call the record store, but we refused to believe it was him. (Mucho thanks to Muller for reminding me of that!) Also, that same night at the LotNC gig Stiv promised to come to the record store the next day to kidnap us...and made good on his promise, though no actual kidnaping occurred.
* I pissed off the lead singer of Whitesnake ... or maybe it was some other hair rock band. regardless, I didn' know who he was then and clearly I still don't. Sorry "leather pants guy in the zebra shirt". I'm sure you've recovered from the ego blow.
* I ended up stuck with the responsibility for the underaged girlfriend of one of the guys in the scratch and rap band that did the "wiki wiki" song, whose name neither Muller nor I can now remember. So much for the staying power of 80s rap! I put the kiddo's butt on a bus back home to Jersey the next morning!
* Too many fun nights hanging with Henry Rollins and the guys after a Black Flag gig.
* Discussing physics and philosophy with the guys from Devo - though not so much input from me on the physics part. Damn! Those guys were freakishly smart!
* Inflicting my wrath on Brian Setzer after he was rude to my (then) boyfriend's two little boys. I didn't care how many tattoos he had - I was still gonna kick his ass!
After a nostalgic phone conversation with Muller we both agreed that there were so many great shows and fun people that they all sort of meld together into one big crazy groupie experience. Even without the Arena Dinosaurs they were still Good Times.