Dear Roy Orbison,
Greetings from summer camp! I write to you this time regarding “The Spirit of Rock & Roll.” Some say it’s lost. It ain’t lost, it’s just not always where it used to be:
Sometimes loud-mouthed, sometimes furious, occasionally rude and always on fire. Intractable are the youth who wave their fists and bark along. The kids are pissed and they mean it, man. Wait, no, they’re not pissed – they want to dance. No, no, now they want to screw or scream or tweet or something. At any rate, they’ve all shown up here to escape life for a tic while sweating it out in God-knows-what Fahrenheit. This parking lot is the combat zone as well as the playground. Summer’s here and the time is right for growling in the streets. Expensive jeans, neon rage, exuberant and coated with slogans like “balls deep.”
Yeah, I don’t like it either. But would we really want it any other way? I mean, it’s the youth, the rebellion. It’s the brand new dance, and American Bandstand it ain’t. Like it or not, at least for the time being, this is what we’re dealing with. I say let ‘em have it… for now. Welcome to the Vans seven-ring circus you call Warped Tour.
Previously bound exclusively to its punk rock reputation, the Vans Warped Tour has been broadening its horizons over the years to include everything from bluesy folk singers to screaming teenagers who play disco metal. Although not all of us are thrilled about the latter, we have to accept that the times they are a changing and new trends are gonna come along. We don’t always like or understand these new sounds and fashions that turn up, but we have to respect the fact that this, for the time being, is fueling the fire for a large percent of the young music lovers out there. Underneath it all, the principles are somehow still the same. Whether it’s in disguise or in your face, the spirit of rock & roll is still in attendance and it’s foaming at the mouth.
Don’t get me wrong Roy, I’m having the time of my life out here, and there are plenty of great bands to watch every day on this tour. I just wish more people were checking them out. It’s interesting, some of the older folks are finding their fix. They too need the therapy – some more than others. Aimless and as derailed as any teenage freight train, the old timers know that when the smoke clears (and the smoke always clears) the tried and true will still be standing.
Here’s to seeing that happen sooner rather than later. In the meantime, we’ll be alright. Turn up The Gamblers, The Souls and The Big Damn Band. It’s Warped tour and it’s a hell of a way to spend the summer.
Tell Eddie I said happy birthday, and say “hi” to Dee Dee and the boys for me.
P.S. send beer.
If you’re in a band and have some thoughts to share from inside the business, get at us.