Category Archives: punk rock

Hardcore Punk Documentary: “American Hardcore”


BT hooked me up with this dvd yesterday, so I immediately took it home and watched it. I’ve been in this hardcore mode lately, so seeing the old school bands again fueled my fire. I was enthralled while watching the old performances by Black Flag, Bad Brains, Minor Threat, SSD, DRI, etc. Hearing the guys who lived it talk about was great too. 

Favorite segments includes: Rollins fighting with a guy in the audience while on stage, Ian MacKaye talking about the “Straight Edge” movement.

These were hard times. The scene wasn’t nice; in fact, it was the polar opposite of the hippie movement of the 60’s. It was violent, angry, and disenfranchised. Alot of these kids were runaways, homeless, or from broken homes. They fought each other. The individual scenes were likened to today’s street gangs. They fought the police. They fought Ronald Reagan. Something as intense as the american hardcore scene couldn’t last though, so by 1986 it was dead.

It’s a good documentary if you just want a taste of the era. There were too many omissions though. I kept waiting for segments on the Dead Kennedy’s and the Misfits, but they were never even mentioned.

Gimme Gimme Gimme MORE (footage, official site)

Buy it


Today and The Formative Years

Something’s been eating away at me for a few weeks. There has been an angst stirring within me that I haven’t felt in long time. Every woman driving an SUV yakking on a cell phone, every slob stuffing a Big Mac in his face while sneering at me while I’m on my bike/running, every 30 something yuppie faking it…it’s made me angry. I feel myself becoming like them – well, I’m not becoming a woman in an suv, but you get the point. I swore as a kid I’d never be what I hated. I didn’t know what that meant. I suppose I don’t know now either.

I’m not the sort of soft English/Art/Philosophy degree holder (although I do hold the English degree and for a single semester I was an Art major) that believes that anger is evil and best suppressed. How we act upon that anger is what defines us, because ultimately we can’t avoid it altogether. In my life I’ve found two refuges: writing and physically draining sports (wrestling/hockey/triathlon). I’ve been coping with my angst lately by writing again. I’m always running or hitting a heavy bag.

I haven’t posted in a few days, because I knew this post was coming. Over the weekend I bought new tires for Mrs. Figurehead’s car and today I found out that I’ll be buying a new central air unit. I wanted to smash something. Instead, I took a dose of reality; I went home a little early, skipped my workout, and hugged my wife and daughter. Two sides to being an adult – the harsh realities of struggling to get ahead while life constantly tugs you towards the bottom of the lake and the beauty of having a family who loves you even on your bad days.

So Henry, I’m with ya buddy. But Figurehead, we dont’ know what you’re talking about man. Some days are meant for understanding where you came from, the proverbial “formative years”. Some days I still wanna be Henry in this Black Flag vid:


Great comparison piece on Clark Howard and Dave Ramsey


The Atlanta Journal Constitution published an article today that compares financial talk radio gurus Dave Ramsey and Clark Howard. I’m a Dave Ramsey guy personally. Dave’s program has Mrs. Figurehead and I debt free (except our modest mortgage) in our early 30’s. We don’t buy junk we don’t need. We’re saving for our home on Seabrook Island that we’ll buy by age 50. We’re saving for Izzy Figurehead’s education. How can a former punk rocker stay punk rock into his 30’s and eventually into middle age (other than working in a tatoo shop or insisting that his band will eventually make it)? Nothing is more punk rock than avoiding debt and the shackles big business would put on you by imprisoning you with their payments. Stick it to the man! Viva la Punk Rock!

Clark seems like a cool guy too. We don’t get his show here in Nashville though.