The ’60s and ’70s are long behind us, but the music of the era has remained constant over the last five decades. Former flower children crave classic rock nostalgia while their kids groove to the same music.
But while some bands from that time are still truckin’, some have almost no hope of ever returning. Keep your fingers crossed as you go through this list of bands that may never reunite.
5. The Kinks
Since the band’s break-up in 1996, the Kinks have flip-flopped on the possibility of a reunion.
The deciding factor seems to be whether brothers Ray and Dave Davies can get along. Their sibling rivalry has been the major reason the Kinks haven’t had another run.
With popular songs like “You Really Got Me”, “All Day and All of the Night” and “Lola”, there’s no shortage of reunion requests, but both brothers have turned down the opportunity. After spending more than 30 years together in a band, it seems they can’t spend anymore.
4. Pink Floyd
At 2005′s Live 8, the classic line-up of Rogers Waters, David Gilmour, Richard Wright and Nick Mason took the stage for the first time in over 24 years.
Sadly, nothing came of that one-off experience – yet. A Pink Floyd reunion has been rumoured for decades, but aside from Live 8, the band has yet to reform. The demand is there: Waters has embarked on two successful tours featuring Dark Side of the Moon and The Wall, with a second leg of the latter added on.
Out of this list, Floyd probably have the highest likelihood of getting back together. Just hope that it’s not when pigs fly.
3. Guns N’ Roses
If you ask Axl Rose, he’d say GNR is still together, but the Appetite for Destruction or Use Your Illusion line-ups are the ones most fans want: Slash, Duff McKagan, Izzy Stradlin, and Steven Adler or Matt Sorum.
Current keyboardist Dizzy Reed has spent more time in GNR than any member other than Rose, making him the second-longest standing band member. Yet demand for an original (or close to original) reunion has been high for years. Fans patiently waited out Chinese Democracy, but how long can they wait for Slash and Rose to kiss and make up?
There’s a slight chance that the Guns N’ Roses will reunite – or, at least, talk about it – at their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April.
2. Led Zeppelin
Technically, Zeppelin reunited for one night only at the Ahmet Ertegün Tribute Concert in December 2007. Robert Plant has since repeatedly dismissed rumours of a reunion with Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones and the late John Bonham’s son, Jason. He has opted to continue recording solo albums and touring with the Band of Joy, adding that he can no longer hit all the same notes that he could in the ’70s.
Shortly after the tribute show, Plant said in an interview, “Everything’s got to be right [for a Led Zeppelin]. The whole thing about Led Zeppelin was it was so beautifully haphazard.” If the group can somehow regain the essence Plant described, that’s the one non-earthly element needed for a shot at a world tour.
Even though the Swedish pop sensation ABBA were only together for a decade, the band has long-standing mainstream success, selling 375 million records worldwide. But now, 30 years removed from the limelight without a reunion, it’s looking less and less likely that Agnetha, Benny, Björn and Anni-Frid will perform on the same stage again.
In 2000, ABBA reportedly turned down $1 billion for a 100-show reunion tour. Divided between the four of them, that would have been $2.5 million per person nightly.
Björn Ulvaeus told a UK newspaper that there will never be a reunion. Benny Andersson currently performs with his own orchestra, Anni-Frid has taken up environmental causes and Agnetha Fältskog was, for some time, a social recluse. With the four of them content in their current activities, it seems none of them will take a chance on ABBA.
Looking back at music from the late ’60s and early ’70s, there were a number of rock acts from back then who wrote songs about rambling. Though Urban Dictionary has a definition for rambling, it’s mostly about driving and rocking. A lot of bands did it. Here are the ones that did it best.
Top 5 Songs about Ramblin’
5. “Rambler, Gambler” by Bob Dylan (1960)
Taken off of the soundtrack to Martin Scorsese’s Bob Dylan documentary, No Direction Home, Dylan sings about being a rambler and a gambler. After that, he just rambles. This is one of the earliest-known songs about rambling, so rambling hadn’t yet caught on (heck if I know).
“I’m a rambler, I’m a gambler
I’m a long way from home
and if you don’t like me,
you can leave me alone”
4. “Ramble Tamble” by Creedence Clearwater Revival (1970)
The opener to Cosmo’s Factory, “Ramble Tamble” clocks in with over seven minutes of rambling. Though tensions between bassist Stu Cook, drummer Doug Clifford and the Fogerty brothers grew during the recording of the album, they still wrote a great record with a great track about rambling.
“Theres mud in the water,
Roach in the cellar,
Bugs in the sugar,
Mortgage on the home,
Mortgage on the home”
3. “Ramble On” by Led Zeppelin (1969)
With a lot of references to Lord of the Rings, “Ramble On” isn’t about dirty women or riding on the highway. Rather, it’s about exploring majestic forests and meeting a beauty–and then rambling. Jimmy Page riffs, Jon Bonham slams on the drums and John Paul Jones lends a distinct bassline so that Robert Plant can ramble.
and now’s the time, the time is now
to sing my song.
I’m goin round the world, I got to find my girl
On my way,
I’ve been this way ten years to the day,
2. “Ramblin’ Man” by The Allman Brothers Band (1973)
Wouldn’t you know it, the Allman Brothers Band’s biggest hit was about rambling. Simply put, “Ramblin’ Man” is a southern rock song about being a rambling man–one that brought on generations of rambling men! Okay, maybe not that last part, but still.
“Lord, I was born a ramblin’ man,
Tryin’ to make a livin’ and doin’ the best I can,
and when it’s time for leavin, I hope you’ll understand
that I was born a ramblin’ man”
1. “Midnight Rambler” by The Rolling Stones (1969)
Side two of Let It Bleed starts with this Keith Richards’ bluesy guitar and Mick Jagger’s harmonica, building up into a catchy but dark track about rambling. It’s not the midday rambler. It’s not the midafternoon rambler. It’s the midnight rambler.
“So if you ever meet the midnight rambler
coming down your marble hall
Well he’s pouncing like proud Black Panther
Well, you can say I, I told you so
Well, don’t you listen for the midnight rambler
Play it easy as you go
I’m gonna smash down all your plate glass windows
Put a fist, put a fist through your steel-plated door”
Solo pop tarts are all over the new release section of CD stores, but it’s not often that one finds a mainstream female lead singer with a male backing band, not to mention that the field narrows in a defined genre. However, frontwomen are perhaps most popular in, believe it or not, pop-punk music.
Top 5 Pop-Punk/New Wave Frontwomen
5. Monique Powell of Save Ferris
She doesn’t seem like the right fit for a ’90s ska-punk band, but the red-haired songstress Monique Powell has a rich voice that goes along with the trumpets. In their cover of “Come On Eileen” by Dexys Midnight Runners, she sings what every guy watching the video is thinking: “With you in that dress/my thoughts, I confess/verge on dirty.”
Save Ferris’ name is likely taken from the 1986 comedy Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.
4. Maja Ivarsson of The Sounds
Don’t waste her time. Maja Ivarsson gets to the point: she wants to be “the best female vocalist around… of at least this century.” The Swedish blonde new wave singer has been leading the Sounds since 1999 and was briefly a member of Cobra Starship. Though the Sounds are more well-known in Europe, they’ve played the Warped Tour and have established a fan following in North America.
3. Hayley Williams of Paramore
At only 20 years old, Hayley Williams is the lead singer of the Grammy-nominated Paramore. She’s an orange-haired spitfire backed by an all-guy band on pounding drums, heavy bass and electric guitars. The group has only recorded two albums, but with their third album coming out this September, they’re sure to be a popular act going into 2010.
2. Gwen Stefani of No Doubt
Before the before the kids, before the fragrance, before the Harajuku Girls, Gwen Stefani was the frontwoman of popular ’90s pop-punk group No Doubt. Currently, the band is on their reunion tour and Stefani has returned to the artist she was before her awful solo career. She’s regarded as one of the best female lead singers around–hopefully she’ll stick with No Doubt and defend her title.
1. Debbie Harry of Blondie
Current frontwomen have Debbie Harry to thank–aspiring artists look up to her as one of the most well-known female lead singers, perhaps the original. She’s established her role in the music business and has had enjoyed success with and without Blondie. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006, but Harry is the band member who will be most remembered.
Shirley Manson of Garbage (alternative rock)
Lacey Mosley of Flyleaf (metal)
Amy Lee of Evanescence (hard rock)
Cristina Scabbia of Lacuna Coil (also hard rock)
Nina Persson of The Cardigans (pop rock)
You know the drill. Have a few laughs at the expense of these musicians who still have more money than you do.
Top 5 Early ’90s Rap One Hit Wonders
5. “Jump” by Kris Kross (1992)
They were a teenage rap duo who guaranteed they’d make you jump jump. Mac Daddy and Daddy Mac (seriously, those were their stage names) wore their clothes backwards and had a video game, Make My Video: Kris Kross. Nowadays, you have to be an accomplished artist to get your own video game (it took The Beatles 40 years), but back then, artists were cashing in on the 16-bit action. It’s long gone now.
4. “Good Vibrations” by Marky Mark & The Funky Bunch (1991)
Before he became Hollywood actor Mark Wahlberg, he was rap artist Marky Mark. He and the Funky Bunch (Ashey Ace, Duffle, Scottie Gee, DJ-T and Hector the Bootie Inspector) sent out good vibrations in 1991 and even got their own Make My Video game. But once Marky stepped out of the shadow of his older brother, he went on to model underwear and dedicate a book to his penis. Then he became an actor.
3. “Baby Got Back” by Sir Mix-A-Lot (1992)
When the video for this song came out, even white boys had to shout. Though he never got a video game, Sir Mix-A-Lot’s one hit has been covered by numerous groups (including the cast of Shrek and even got him a Burger King commercial with Spongebob Squarepants. That’s about it.
2. “U Can’t Touch This” by MC Hammer (1990)
MC Hammer was untouchable in the 1990s. He danced in parachute pants, and somehow, it was cool. But then he spent all his money and filed for bankruptcy, became a pastor, went on VH1′s The Surreal Life and now he has an upcoming reality show on A&E. He’s making a comeback, and now you know what time it is: Hammertime!
1. “Ice Ice Baby” by Vanilla Ice (1990)
He might’ve “stolen” (check the grace note, chumps) the bassline from “Under Pressure” by Queen & David Bowie, but Vanilla Ice had moves and lyrics. If his rhyme was a drug, he’d sell it by the gram–but it’s not a drug, so he used it for the biggest one hit wonder track ever. Since then, he too appeared on The Surreal Life, he made an awful movie, made a cameo in a better movie and he’s still touring.
“Jump Around” by House of Pain (1992)
“Informer” by Snow (1992)
“Whoomp! (There It Is)” by Tag Team (1993)
“Bust a Move” by Young MC (1989) and “Funky Cold Medina” by Tone Loc (1989) would’ve made the HM list, were they released in the ’90s. Sorry, guys.
Summer’s approaching, and so is the end of the school year for many kids and teens worldwide. For as long as hard rock has been around, rockstars have written songs about school which their young fans can relate to.
Here comes another top five.
Top 5 Classic Rock Songs about School
5. “Rock ‘n’ Roll High School” by The Ramones (1979)
Those trouble-making Ramones–they just wanna have some kicks and they just wanna get some chicks. But they don’t mind irritating the teachers and the principal along the way, as noted in the film of the same name. Let them have their fun.
4. “Smokin’ in the Boys Room” by Mötley Crüe (1985)
Originally by Brownsville Station, “Smokin’ in the Boys Room” is about the rebellious teenage youth who just don’t like sitting through class. In the cheesey video, a student with an attitude hangs out with the Crüe in the boys room after a trip to the principals office. When the principal returns with an apology and an A on his paper, he still sticks it to the man.
3. “Hot for Teacher” by Van Halen (1984)
The video features David Lee Roth behind the wheel of the schoolbus, driving an apprehensive Waldo do his first day of school. He and his classmates–which include Eddie and Alex Van Halen with Michael Anthony and Roth–soon find out that their teacher is a bikini-clad pageant winner who table dances on the desks. If only everyone who ever crushed on their teacher could relate.
2. “Another Brick in the Wall (Part II)” by Pink Floyd (1979)
Perhaps the most well-known of the three parts, “Another Brick in the Wall (Part II)” contains the cryptic lyrics, “We don’t need no education, we don’t need no thought control,” sung by Pink Floyd guitarist David Gilmour and repeated by a school choir. The album version starts with a trademark scream from bassist Roger Waters before the boarding school protest anthem begins. It’s eerie from start to finish.
1. “School’s Out” by Alice Cooper (1972)
If you didn’t see this coming, you haven’t heard enough anti-school rock songs. “School’s Out” was the anthem of that years graduating class and ones to come. The bell has rung–class dismissed!