Hüsker Dü and the Birth of Alternative Rock

Via Trash Theory

Initially punk rock was not profitable. Though it might save your life, seldom did it pay the bills. The music was brash, loud and rarely ever played on the radio, but Nirvana and grunge changed that in 1991. Unlike the classic rock/metal indebted versions of grunge pedalled by Pearl Jam and Alice In Chains, Nirvana’s version was a slick collision of Black Flag, and The Beatles; a punk, metal, pop hybrid previously unheard by the mainstream public. But as Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic once said in interview: [It] was nothing new, Hüsker Dü did it before us. Few bands summed up the pre-grunge alternative rock scene of the 1980s like Minneapolis’ Hüsker Dü. Their name came from a Danish boardgame that guitarist/songwriter Bob Mould recalled from his youth, ironically translated as “do you remember?” Starting as an underground hardcore band they transformed into what we’d know today as alternative rock, a sound that would attract the attention of radio stations, major labels and the masses. The musical groundwork they put in their 9 years of existence paved the way for the 90s alt rock takeover. But who were Hüsker Dü? Why were they so important? And how did they give birth to alternative rock?

The Thin White Duke: David Bowie’s Darkest Character

Via Polyphonic

The Thin White Duke was David Bowie‘s 1975 and 1976 persona and character. He is primarily identified with Bowie’s 1976 album Station to Station and is mentioned by name in the title track. However, Bowie had begun to adopt the “Duke” persona during the preceding Young Americans tour and promotion in 1975. The persona’s look and character are somewhat based on Thomas Jerome Newton, the titular humanoid alien played by Bowie in the 1976 film The Man Who Fell to Earth.

The Thin White Duke was a controversial figure due to ostensibly pro-fascist statements made by Bowie in press interviews during this period. Soon after making the comments, Bowie claimed that they were “theatrical” remarks made in character and did not reflect his actual views. In later years, he blamed his erratic behaviour during his mid-1970s Duke era on an “astronomical” use of hard drugs (particularly cocaine) while living in Los Angeles.

Bowie left California for Europe in 1976 to improve his mental and physical well-being. He settled in West Berlin in early 1977, at which point he quietly retired the Thin White Duke persona. Until he reappeared in his final appearance for the music video for Lazarus.


The Story Behind Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” – Drunk History

ViaComedy Central

Dolly Parton wrote the song “I Will Always Love You” for her former manager Porter Wagoner, and she stayed true to that promise for decades afterward.
About Drunk History: Based on the popular web series, Drunk History is the liquored-up narration of our nation’s history. Host Derek Waters, along with an ever-changing cast of actors and comedians, travels across the country to present the rich tales that every city in this land has to offer. Booze helps bring out the truth. It’s just that sometimes the truth is a little incoherent.