Do the Ronettes really deserve to be in the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame? This year, along with previously documented underachiever REM, the Ronettes angled into the Hall, largely on their puppet-body contribution to (allegedly) human-killing Phil Spector's 'wall of sound' sound. The songs are catchy -- the few that exist -- but they didn't do that much to make them. Do you applaud the players of Twister for the overlapping tangle that people get into based on the color the arrow points to?
The FBO will be, over the next two weeks, appointing new bands the FBO recommends for joining the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame that have been snubbed so far.
FBO INDUCTEE NUMBER ONE: JOHN COUGAR MELLENCAMP
Can anyone listen to 'Pink Houses' and not like it? John Cougar -- often so mocked for his dumb swoop of hair in the mid '80s and carrying the vibe of someone that might have laughed too hard at a taking-a-dump-on-someone's-porch prank years before -- is actually something of the Real Bruce Springsteen. A working-class guy who has working-class roots and earned his slur with his Central Time Zone homeland. He helped found Farm Aid, still going, and has made jangly, duo-guitar rock'n'roll beginning at precisely the moment (1982 or so) that the Rolling Stones forgot how to. John has kept it up. You may smirk at the recent Ford Truck commerical -- 'this is our country' -- but you can't deny the hook, or that it SOUNDS LIKE JOHN. He has his own voice -- something hard to find -- and his own co-opted sound that has never sold out, tried fashionable tricks or swayed from his Indiana convictions. In his OK single 'Cherry Bomb' (which featured a bi-racial couple in the video), he lets his long-standing bandmates take a stab at a line in the last verse (can you imagine Billy Joel or Bob Seger do that?). The title 'Pink Houses' deserves credit. Here in Vietnam, you can't walk down a street without seeing a pink-fronted home, or go into a cheap motel with rose-pink walls. But in the USA, pink houses are hard to find. The man is MORE the poet than many so-called poets, and deserves, for 20 years of consistent rock'n'roll production, a nod into the Hall.
Is there anyone else who really plays Stones-inspired rock anymore? John's held the banner high.
--> Consider this:
John Cougar is not in the Hall, but BOB SEGER, ZZ Top, Jackson Brown (sacre bleu!), Santana, Jefferson Airplane and Billy Joel are.
Mobile HQ -- Cat Ba Island, Vietnam