Make Love, Not War

I confess . . .

Behind the bartender was the coolest bartista in San Diego, slim and punky and the first woman I've ever seen look good in lowrider jeans because both her belly and her butt had that nice swayback roundness. She was dancing, not for tips or coochie sexiness, but because if she had to work the cash register, she was gonna bounce and smile while she did so.

And then Dave Wakeling! Wee and blond and youthful, with muscley biceps and a rugby player's beer tummy, he still plays the hits for the nostalgia crowd. Jimmy was full of contempt. He should have new music. He should be growing. He has a tummy. He used to open for The Clash at The Palladium, for fuck's sake, and here he is, slutting around any beach bar that'll charge a $10 cover.

So what if he has a tummy? He's sexy and 70! I dance like a big fag at Duran Duran shows—who'm I to knock the nostalgia crowd? And I couldn't care less about hearing new cuts; any song, for instance, that the Stones wrote after Some Girls was worthless trash, and I don't want to waste my precious concert dollars on it. Which would you choose: "Brown Sugar"or "Harlem Shuffle"? We know what the Maos in the Chinese government would pick. But then Jimmy mentioned Tom Petty, who unlike Mick Jagger and Sting, becomes better with each album, and I became confused. I'd rather hear cuts off She's the One—which nobody has ever even heard because it was released in the midst of a glut of Tom Petty albums of soft (but not boring, Sting!) beauty and strength—than be subjected to "Breakdown" yet again.

Tom Petty's new stuff rules, and therefore Dave Wakeling should be ashamed of himself. Still, the only problem I had with the show was the silly way he clasped his hands together like a lovesick altar boy at the end of "I Confess."

* * *

I wasn't going to write about or even watch the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductions Sunday night. I don't do awards shows. But then, it was, you know, the Clash and The Police back when they were exciting and before Sting started recording with any Marsalis brother he could lay his soft-jazz hands on.

AC/DC rocked until Steven Tyler came out to pay homage by sucking up every bit of attention in the house and singing louder than and out of harmony with Brian Johnson. If I were Johnson, I would have punched him in the throat.

I had high hopes for Gwen Stefani, inducting the Police, but she was winging it with long stories about herself rather than eloquent—and written beforehand—tributes like the ones Tom Morellofrom Rageand U2's The Edge paid to the Clash. She was, I'm sorry to say, dippy.

And Sting managed to suck every drop of goodness right out of "Roxanne" and spit it into the sink. The "song" was noodly and jammy, but with an ugly arrangement that went on for somewhere around the length of the entire second side of Synchronicity. Sting is becoming more and more slow, until he'll finally end up playing whole albums of one long zen note. Holding one note may work for tantric sex, but come on, Sting. Keep it between you and Trudie.

Keep it to yourself.
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