Long Live Rock N Roll!
It’s always been the case that the music you grew up with in many ways became the most important chapter to the soundtrack of your life, because it coincided with the years that involved discovering yourself, finding your voice and so many rites of passage that shape the rest of what we do and who we become.
For the rock and heavy metal fans of the late 70s and 80s this was perhaps more true because as a genre it was completely ostracised and frowned upon as mindless and of little substance. For the mainstream media in the UK which in those days meant a handful of radio and four TV channels, it simply didn’t exist.
To listen to or even be aware of this kind of music, you had to belong to a very exclusive club. You had one magazine to read, Kerrang!, one mainstream radio show, the late Tommy Vance’s original Friday Rock Show and if you were lucky, local radio shows up and down the country that gave it some airtime.
Mainstream TV coverage was restricted to forced slots on the BBCs Top Of The Pops when a metal song unexpectedly breached the Top 30, and it would be introduced by an idiotic Radio 1 DJ as some kind of travelling freak show to be gawped at in horror as if to remind you that monsters do exist. Only The Old Grey Whistle Test gave serious consideration to the groups paving the way but it was underground, hushed up and on after the pipe & slippers brigade had long-since retired safely to their beds.
It wasn’t until MTV launched in Europe at the end of the 1980s that rock and metal got the coverage it deserved, but by then devotees of the denim, leather and/or spandex uniform had become used to being outsiders. Many revelled in it and were glad that most of the bands they liked, no-one else had ever heard of.
Nirvana’s Never Mind in 1991 and the grunge revolution that followed laid waste the framework of rock and metal as it was, resulting in the mix of styles that converged to become Nu-Metal and the mainstream and hugely commercial following it now attracts. Many of our musical heroes lay wounded and rejected, but having spent the 90s largely in exile, the resiliant and battle-hardened troops are still there, still playing and in many cases recording new material for us to enjoy.
Why this podcast? Well it’s to report the news, keep you up to date and include the odd feature and interview. So give it a listen and feel free to comment or contribute in any way you see fit.
Keep On Rockin’!!!