Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Joe Strummer's Ashes Are Blown on the Wind, But the Clash Will Never Die

Three synchronous recent events that lead us to believe that The Only Band That Matters may be getting a posthumous second or third wind. Or maybe they never went away.

1. Leaving our Y in southwest Houston last weekend we found our self walking behind two giggly young adolescent girls, maybe 12 or 13, when one starts singing to her buddy: “This … is … the Radio Clash … on pi-rate satellite…” We were tempted to compliment the youngsters on their refined yet somewhat anachronistic musical taste, but we kept walking lest we be falsely revealed as old and strange.

2. Watching a few nights later, we were snatched from our torpor when David Corn began quoting the ancient wisdom of Joe Strummer to Robert Wright: “As the Clash said, ‘Let fury have the hour, anger can be power.” This was apropos of we’re not sure what, as we were doing two other things at the time and had the videoblog on as lulling background noise. But like Adorno, Clampdown can be cited to illuminate a variety of subjects.

3. Stopped at a light and spacing out while driving back from our post office late yesterday afternoon, we realized the college radio station was playing London Calling. We had the windows down and noticed some Southwest Cholo types, or more likely would-be Southwest Cholo types, giving us the Hard Eye as they loitered in front of a storefront that the last time we drove past was a taqueria but now appears to be a cell phone-eria. We turned the music up real loud and sang along: “The ice age is coming, the sun's zooming in/ Meltdown expected ... Etc.” As the light changed we considered flippin' off the loiterers but then remembered that we had seen Crash and it was possible we were misreading their signals ... they might be Clash fans!

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