Friday, July 31, 2009

27-alan mcgee on the faces

and more from the major domo of whatz not and what iz in the isles of late britania, the man with the four-eyed tifter, mr. alan mcgee railing forth on why rod & the faces should give it another go.


"ZANI - We Need a Reunion

Being a Rod Stewart fan these days is tough. If you mention his name in company then the odds are you're going to get at least one guffaw and a "blues traitor" comment. Why so serious about Rod the Mod? This is a man who was one of the main influences on the Sex Pistols (in his Faces days) and therefore helped instigate punk rock.

The problems people have with Stewart's career seem to start around the late 70s (his Blondes Have More Fun era), when he was making commercial bids into disco crossovers and soft pop (moves that prompted rockists to label Stewart a joke). Joke? Hardly. I can easily mention some classics from this period: Young Turks, Baby Jane and Downtown Train.

The anti-Stewart arguments are tired and scurrilous. From mod urchin to international playboy, Stewart has always been the essence of rock'n'roll by following his own instincts. His early days saw some of the heaviest players in UK music working with him: Joe Meek, Ray Davies, Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger, Fleetwood Mac and Jeff Beck. Impressive. However, it was when he joined the Faces and started his solo career that he began his iconic white-blues phase (1969-1974), releasing one commercial and critical smash after another.

A career highlight for me was discovering Stewart was a fan of Creation Records (he went on to cover the Primals and Oasis for his When We Were the New Boys album)

Being a fan, I'm surprised by the lack of hoopla for a Faces reunion. And the possibility of the Black Keys reworking Stewart?! This is news! Big news! The potential for a Black Keys and Stewart collaboration is exciting, and I have been tracking developments since I first heard the rumours. The Black Keys have been in collaboration heaven for the past few years, from their almost-there work with Ike Turner to Rick Rubin bringing them in for his ZZ Top project. Yet when I heard the Akron-based psychedelic blues boys were teaming up with Stewart? That tops the lot.

I mean, was there ever a better rock'n'roll band than the Faces? Drunken, likable and out for the good times – they have had a huge musical impact on myself, the Black Crowes, Wilco, the Sex Pistols, the Replacements, Oasis and many others. Which is why I think a Faces reunion will mean a return to the halcyon days of yore, where Stewart had critical and commercial success. Not that Stewart probably cares either way. The magic of Rod is that he does what he wants, when he wants, and hey, if he wants to work with the Black Keys and reunite the Faces, then that's fine with me."


Me said...

Mr. McGee's enthusiasm is laudable here but, unlike some of his contemporaries like Ray Davies, I don't believe Rod Stewart's voice has held up well enough. I don't know that he'd make it through a Faces tour, or even a single show blasting out like he used to. That isn't a criticism as much as a physical reality in this instance.

Haw Haw Harry said...

If Rod had an influence on the Sex Pistols, it was only in a negative way, like Jagger, the punks hated Rod's rock'n'roll decadence. That's all. Rod Stewart (with Jeff Beck) should be recognised for his influence on Led Zeppelin instead.