Wednesday, January 21, 2015

AC/DC Scheduled to Perform 2015 Grammys and Headline Coachella

As I posted recently, I was less than thrilled when the 2015 Grammy nominations were announced. Outside of a few groups nominated in categories that won't air, I really didn't have anyone to root for or reason to watch. You might argue that there's never a reason to watch the Grammys. However, aside from a professional interest during the dozen years I worked at a record store, there's always been something that drew me in and gave me a reason to care. This year seemed to be the one where I was destined to tune out.

Last week, the Grammys began to announce the performers for the Feb. 8 awards show. Among the performers announced thus far: Madonna, Ariana Grande, Ed Sheeran, Eric Church, Sam Smith, Pharrell Williams, Usher, Miranda Lambert, Common and John Legend, and for the first time on the Grammy stage, AC/DC.

Well, there's my reason to watch. I will tune in just to watch AC/DC mop the floor with the sorry parade of pop tart ding-a-lings. It's always good to see any rock band at the Grammys, but having one of the best rock bands of all time play is going to be great. The group are not up for any awards, but were likely invited on the back of their recently released album, Rock or Bust.

Now granted, today's AC/DC is not the AC/DC of yore. Malcolm Young has left the group (at least temporarily) due to serious illness. Phil Rudd's involvement in the group is question after a police raid on his home. Brian Johnson's acid-razor  of a voice is not quite what it once was. All that said, it's still AC/DC. Malcolm and Angus' brother Stevie has joined on guitar and if Rudd can't make it, they should have no problem finding a drummer - maybe Chris Slade will come back.

Regardless of the line-up or their age, this is a band that is more than a match for the likes of Ed Sheeran or Sam Smith. I'd love to see one of those choirboys follow these legends. I'd be willing to wager, however, in true, lame Grammy fashion, the band will close out the show and be cut off 30 seconds into their performance due to the lateness of the broadcast.

I'm sure there will be a generation of younger viewers who will have no context for these old guys tearing up the stage. Hopefully a few eyes are opened, but I can't expect much. I'm much more hopeful for the news of the band headlining Coachella.

Coachella has recently been into booking older acts that cause a twitter storm of tweens wondering who some headliners (like the Stone Roses) are. Now perhaps I'm not giving the younger generation enough credit. AC/DC are one of those bands who seem to cross generational lines and are a fixture of popular culture. Something tells me though that there are a lot of trendy, rich kids who are going to have their minds blown in the desert this spring. I hope every denim-clad dirtball in Bakersfield, CA comes out to Coachella for AC/DC's set, just to make it interesting.

Now if life were truly just, the '74-'79, Bon Scott-era version of the group would be playing the Grammys and Coachella. But that would be too much rock, too much danger for today's whimpering music audience. Could you imagine Bon Scott in the same room as Taylor Swift? Oh, but to dream.

Here's a video of the group's new single, "Rock or Bust." It's a nice rocker and the band sound to be in good enough form to destroy the Grammys. I followed that with a selection of Bon-era gems. What I would give for the Grammy audience to have to deal with such a raw, feral, barrel-chested, satyr-beast like Bon.

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