Stranglehold

Take a moment, if you are so inclined, to listen and watch this always incredible footage of Jimi Hendrix performing our National Anthem at Woodstock in 1969. Just watch this brilliant performance.

I appreciate this performance more the older I get. It is simultaneously hyperbolic and yet strangely understated, mostly due to the cool of the dude who’s grasping the guitar. Yet, there is nothing ambiguous regarding the intent here. Jimi’s rendition is a savage protest and a damning indictment. If you don’t get it by the time he belts out “Taps,” then you’ve got mushrooms in your head. This performance is a big FU to militarism and to fucked up stupid dirty war.

So. It is somewhat bizarre to me to see Ted Nugent take on the ol’ Star Spangled Banner during an appearance on the Huckaboo show. And to watch Huckaboo stand there with his hand over his heart. My dear sweet gravity, conservatives are weird.

First, please allow me to attack Nugent’s strange assertion: “Name me a cool rock and roll song from France.” This is just bloody strange, and where should I start?

No, Ted. No good music ever came from France. Hector Berlioz wasn’t French, and nor was Claude Debussy. Maurice Ravel, Georges Bizet, Pierre Boulez? No? Right. Ignorant rednecks have no use for these fellows, I reckon.

Not to mention the fact that, perhaps, not much French rock music—which does exist, actually—gets to us because, well, they speak FRENCH in France…do I really need to mention this? Really?

The weird gist of Nugent’s assertion really reveals itself when you embark on a countdown of the greatest rock bands of all time. No, they’re not from France. But guess where else they aren’t from?

The Beatles. Led Zeppelin. Pink Floyd. The Who. The Rolling Stones. All. European. Bands. And, as far as Jimi goes…guess where he had to succeed first before he hit it big in these Untied States? That’s right. England.

Ignorant rednecks.

But what’s most offensively weird about this tape is seeing all of these conservagoats standing around and watching this guy play a mediocre rendition of this thing on his guitar and acting like they’re watching Betty Buckley. Does it get any more uncool than this spectacle? What a humiliation.

I’m embarrassed for Ted, for Huckaboobie, for Fox, for America, for hunters, and for rock and roll. Ted. You should have stopped at Cat Scratch Fever.

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