The question of is rock dead? has bothered me for years. I was an avid listener in the 70’s, my teen years were a blur of rock concerts, festivals and all sorts of fun. Likely fun that I should not share online!

In 1980 I had had enough of life as a hippie, I had cut my hair, wore a suit, I was the epitome of the corporate world. Here we are 30 years later, I have long hair, I don’t own a suit, and the idea of working for a corporation appalls me. I wake up at whatever time I wake up, that is usually between 6-7am. Then the fun begins.

In 1980 I somehow lost my connection with the music world, rock was on the outs, punk was on the in.

Around the year 2000 I decided, actually that is a lie, anyway, somehow music re-entered my life. Oh, I was not prepared to spend a mud logged weekend in a two man tent, but I was prepared to see where the industry was headed. The more I looked, the less I liked it.

Many of the bands from the 70’s were still playing, this surprised me, a few stragglers from the 80’s were still active, though seemed to have lost some of their luster. The 90’s seemed like the decade that rock took a vacation. The 00’s have a few high spots, but there seems to be little waiting in the wings to take over from the great classic bands when they hang up their guitars.

Joining me to discuss this sad state of affairs were Trace Hacquard, author of the book Deadlines and Commitments which explores the state of the rock world in some detail. Billy James who is the owner of Glassonyon PR a company that specializes in promoting classic artists and also a musician in his own right who is now working on his fourth CD, he also about to release his eighth book, a second biography of Todd Rundgren. Randy Pratt who plays with the great rock band The Lizards and also owns the record label Hyperspace which works with many classic artists. My final panelist was Armando Aldazabal, he is a successful author and music producer.

All of these people are walking encyclopedias on the subject of rock music. No matter how obscure the band in question it seemed like they all had some commentary.

The program ran for 90 minutes and we covered a great deal of ground. In fact, so knowledgeable are these people that we could have easily talked for many hours longer. You can listen to the entire program here. As a bonus you will also get to hear a couple of tracks from The Lizards latest CD Archeology, and a couple of clips from a couple of new prog bands, IZZ and Roswell 6.

Simon Barrett

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