Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Mike Watt Today


3 guys in a trailer park, originally uploaded by Theresa K.

He's on the left, in his signature flannel, Mike Watt.

I think Mike Watt is a man's man. He's the godfather of hardcore, which is a punk subculture and genre I never understood, and still kind of don't. I respect Watt's staying power and his integrity. I also like his website. You might too.

Here, Mike Watt is surrounded by Evan Foster, of the Boss Martians, center, and Michael Kastelic, of The Cynics. They are backstage at the Underground Garage Festival, where all three bands played --- oh, did I mention that Mike Watt played bass for The Stooges? Yeah. Watt with The Stooges. It was awesome. That's all I can say.

Evan Foster is important in this picture to me for two reasons. Before punk rocked the world, in England, the first wave of "new" music was called "pub rock," and that's the genre that gave us Nick Lowe and Dave Edmunds, and Eddie & the Hot Rods among others. Who knew that "pub rock" would clear the path for "punk rock." Elvis Costello fit in there somewhere as well.

Evan's band, The Boss Martians, play a new-wave-pub-rock twist to garage and surf music. In fact, they bring the 70s current too. They cover the Small Faces in their live set!

Michael Kastelic is the singer in the Cynics, and he is as wild and charismatic as any punk rocker from back in the day.

So - I think this is a fine trio here, even though this is a 2004 photo.

But while I have your ear --- hardcore. To me, the rough and tumble violent contingent of hardcore fans is what was the beginning of the end of punk for me. It was noticed by the media more than the early punk and I didn't like the idea that the media was covering punk as a violent movement.

But that's a discussion for some other time.

Mike Watt, however, tops in my book, hardcore or not.

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