DC ROCK CLUB
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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Rules of Rock: Supergroup Formation

We here at DC Rock Club have decided to try and codify and document our vast knowledge of rock. Now that most of us--with the exception of Potsy, who was diagnosed as impotent by his pediatrician at age 6--have kids, we feel the pressing need to give back to the world, to leave it a better place than it was when we came up.

Pursuant to that noble goal, here are a few scientific, empirically-proven rules and corollaries regarding supergroups and the formation of same:

  1. DC Rock Club's First Rule of Supergroup Formation. Supergroups are invariably less than the sum of their parts. Who among us wouldn't think to themselves, wow, Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin? Paul Rodgers from Bad Company? Tony Franklin, the barefoot placekicker from the Philadelphia Eagles? And Chris Slade, formerly of Uriah motherfuckin' Heep? Sign me up, dude! And yet...The Firm had, like, two good songs. How could this be? It could be because of Corollary 1--a rock group is like a sports team. It needs role players. Not everyone can be a superstar. This is also why those Hollywood movies with an assload of A-listers always fall short. Everyone wants to be the leading man.
  2. DC Rock Club's Second Rule of Supergroup Formation. If you form or join a supergroup, then your current group is thereby pushed into the realm of hackdom. This rule was actually provided me by my friend MB (which may or may not stand for Montgomery Burns), who noted that Will Ferrell lookalike and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith had joined Chickenfoot, with Sammy Hagar, and pointed out that, to pick an example, Phil Selway from Radiohead wouldn't just up and join a supergroup next week (ok mates, I'll be off to join Chickenfoot for a few months, then). Not only is Chickenfoot hacky, but Smith's participation has given the RHCP that final push into the abyss as well. And it's not just dorky bro-rock types, either. Jack White joined with notable pussy Brendan Benson to form The Raconteurs. Not uncoincidentally, around the same time White started to resemble a stout 45-year old woman who shops at Chico's. It's fucking too much. And now he's in Dead Weather? This is how it went down with the Maya--they had the Classic era where they built all their temples and pyramids, and then they immediately entered the Post Classic era once they started conquering neighboring city-states, in effect forming a Mesoamerican supergroup. A few centuries later they were popping their smallpox cysts in the mirror and thinking, where did it all go wrong? You formed a supergroup, that's where it went wrong.
  3. DC Rock Club's Third Rule of Supergroup Formation. Don't allow music sluts to join your band. This is an intermediate step towards forming a supergroup. Music sluts include but are not limited to the following people--Johnny Marr, Dave Navarro, Jeff Beck, G.E. Smith, any member of the Red Hot Chili Peppers or Jane's Addiction, Chris Cornell, Sammy Hagar, either of the Deal sisters, and David Crosby. Just tell them to keep walkin', man.
  4. DC Rock Club's Fourth Rule of Supergroup Formation. Instead of forming a supergroup, just form a regular group, but call yourselves "Supergroup." It's a bad-ass name and it works.
This is not to say supergroups haven't produced some good stuff. In fact, here's my top 10 supergroup songs of all time:

  1. "Anyone For Tennis," Cream. The ones who started all this nonsense. Other Rock Club members accuse me of being gay for loving this gentle hippy song.
  2. "Get The Message," Electronic. Collaboration between New Order's Bernard Summer and Johnny Marr. Quickly forgotten, but like a bad piece of meat, this one stays with you.
  3. "Radioactive," The Firm. I like how it sound like Paul Rodgers is holding his nose when he sings 'cause I'm uh-radioactive...
  4. "Heat of the Moment," Asia.
  5. "High Enough," Damn Yankees. Epic. I believe Ted Nugent is wearing a form of eight-ball jacket in the video, and Oakley wraparounds. Someone should hunt him for sport.
  6. "Feel Like Makin' Love," Bad Company. Who doesn't?
  7. "Such Great Heights," The Postal Service. This song is about forming a supergroup, and writing one good song, and then breaking up the supergroup.
  8. "Say Hello 2 Heaven," Temple of the Dog. Were it not for this song, they would have henceforth been known as Temple of the Dong.
  9. "Our House," Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young.
  10. "Can't Find My Way Home," Blind Faith. Topless woman on the album cover.

10 comments:

Potsy said...

Anyone For Tennis sucks eggs, Jimbromski.

Bad Company rulez. See how I spelled that with a "z?" That's how much they rule.

Even though that chick is ugly, gotta love the Blind Faith album cover.

John said...

Nice rundown but you boys are killing me with slobbering over an 11 year-old girl on the Blind Faith record. YES - she is 11!!!! She actually asked to be paid for the photo with a pony (although they gave her parent's money instead.) True story. Gross.

Jimbromski said...

11 years old? Oh God.

Let the record show that neither Potsy nor I "slobbered." Although I did refer to her as a "woman."

Potsy said...

Wow. 11. That's crazy. I was of course referring to how much I liked the rocket ship/aeroplane she is holding.

They should have given her the pony. That would make for a good photo too.

Super Zoe said...

Unrelated:
Did you guys hear WOXY is moving to Austin?! Seriously. http://tinyurl.com/nohppn

And I would have NO idea what WOXY is except I read this blog. Look how educational you are!

PS: I love Damn Yankees 'High Enough' - one of my fave power ballads ever. And I LOVE power ballads.

Jumbo Slice said...

Super Zoe - I welcome the arrival of our WOXY overlords. One more reason to love Austin.

As for supergroups, your second point is the most important. Once you join a supergroup you've tainted the very group that made you a Rock Star. Guys need to think about that before forming atrocities such as Chickenfoot.

BTW, excellent list of music sluts. I cracked up when I read "David Crosby". Never thought of him as a slut but in this case it fits.

Question: if kids of famous musicians start a band, is it a supergroup by proxy?

Growing up my favorite supergroup song (sadly) was "Get It On (Bang a Gong)" by Power Station.

Steve said...

I must register my disagreement on one point - Brendan Benson is pretty balls.

Potsy said...

having pretty balls does not excuse him

Potsy said...

oh, is. not has. my bad.

Robert said...

Are you kidding about woxy I just mailed them a La Snacks Cd Today!!!!! I really need manager

Everyone knows that the greatest super group of all time is Brad Stone Gossard plus Kevin Smith look a like from Satchel equals Supergroup awesome