For the uninitiated, from 1969 to 1974 Ian Hunter was the lead singer and main songwriter (along with Mick Ralphs, later of the lamentable and unlamented Bad Company) of Mott The Hoople, one of my five favorite rock & roll bands ever on planet Earth, and probably the best live band you never saw. (For the unbelievers amongst you who find that claim frivolous or overblown, track down the 2004 Sony/Columbia release Mott The Hoople Live - 30th Anniversary Edition double-CD set for a crash (pun intended) course in rock & roll aggro from the fabled 1970's.
And that's not all, folks. Ian Hunter is no nostalgia act, Jack. Starting with his Rant return-to-form in 2001, Hunter has amassed a truly world-beating run of four releases - Shrunken Heads (2007), Man Overboard (2009) and last year's brilliant When I'm President - extending his white-hot swath of rock & roll command well into the 21st century. (And let's ask ourselves at this juncture, dear readers, how many other artists have made FOUR great records in a row in the 21st century? By my count Steve Earle, Alejandro Escovedo and Jack White are the only three contenders that spring readily to mind. Bob Dylan maybe, sorta could at least have been considered if it weren't for that fucked-up Christmas debacle of a record he cut in 2009, royally screwing up his four-in-a-row curve.) (And let's face facts, three of my favorite rock acts of all time - Lou Reed, Neil Young and The Rolling Stones - haven't even made ONE great record in the 21st century, let alone four, or more particularly, four in a row.)
But I digress.......
It just occurs to me, I first saw Ian Hunter with Mott The Hoople on June 13th, 1970, at the Cincinnati Pop Festival, exactly one week after I graduated from high school, 43 years ago. I cannot think of another rock act I'm likely to see again that is going to span a longer period of time than that. I saw The Who on November 1st, 1969, but believe you me, the chances of me attending an evening of entertainment with that rotting, bloated corpse of a rock & roll assemblage that Daltrey & Townhend have taken to hauling around the States like an albatross around their necks and not-so-laughingly call The Who are - in the words of Elvis Costello - less than zero. The Who were four men - Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend, John Enwhistle and Keith Moon. There are no substitutes (pun intended, again). (see blog entry Shows I Saw In the 1960's, part two, The Who, December 7th, 2012)
I guess it's conceivable I might see Bob Dylan again, who I first witnessed November 19th, 1965 (see blog entry Shows I Saw in the 1960's, part one, Bob Dylan & the Hawks, May 3rd, 2012) but it's doubtful, unless somebody else pays for the ticket. I saw Dylan in 1990 on the Oh Mercy tour and sometime after that at (of all things) the Ohio State Fair and, for me, the Dylan live ship has sailed. I suppose it's eminently possible I might see Iggy Pop again in my lifetime, who I first saw with The Stooges back in '69 (see blog entry The First Time I Saw The Stooges, August 24th, 2012), but we'll see. Right now we're discussing Ian Hunter.
Perhaps we'll talk more about Mott The Hoople and Ian Hunter in the coming weeks of Bonus Video Fridays, but for this week this is all I have left to say: Ladies & gentlemen, if you live anywhere around Ohio, within driving distance of Kent, you could do worse for an evening of rock & roll than to drop 35 bucks to see Ian Hunter & The Rant Band on October 5th. You'll just have to take my word for it. Have I ever steered you wrong?
inspirational verse; "'Allo, 'allo,'allo,'allo" - Ian Hunter, 1975
"You didn't know what rock & roll was / Until you met a drummer on the Greyhound bus
I got there in the nick of time / Before he got his hands across your state li-i-ine"
"Woman, you're a mess, gonna die in your sleep /
And there's blood on my amp and my Les Paul heat"
(Wait, come to think of it, every line in the song is inspirational, just listen LOUD and enjoy.......)
© 2013 Ricki C.