||The Old Men and The Scene: Rocking On
With New Tour, Stones' Appeal and Energy Seem Eternal
By David Segal
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, September 8, 2002; Page G14
Ignore them if you want, sneer if you must -- or just buy a ticket and get yer ya-yas out. The Rolling Stones are the highest-grossing live band in pop history, and apparently they're going to tour until they're all in Depends. There's no studio album to push on what's officially called the Licks World Tour ("presented by ETrade Financial"), only a group of remastered discs from their glory days, plus a greatest-hits collection with a handful of new tracks.
If it all seems a little -- what's the word? -- grasping, remember that these dudes can't possibly need the money. (Can they?) When they play FedEx Field on Oct. 4, expect a show, plus lots of dusted-off classics. At a warmup in Toronto, the group played "Can't You Hear Me Knocking?" "It's Only Rock and Roll" and "Happy." And if FedEx actually sells out, an MCI Center show could be added.
The Stones aren't the only '60s greats roaming the country this fall. There are also the Other Ones, a touring ensemble of former Grateful Dead members. The band's lineup includes original members Bob Weir, Phil Lesh and Mickey Hart. There'll be a whole lot of tie-dye downtown on Nov. 15, when the Other Ones jam at MCI.
From there, the shows get smaller in scale, though there's plenty to choose from, particularly for country music lovers. Old-time country smoothie Ray Price, who used to lend Hank Williams his sofa when the guy went on a bender, comes to the Birchmere on Oct. 12. Merle Haggard, one of the original country outlaw singers -- he's done way more time than most rappers -- comes to the Birchmere Sept. 22 and 23. On Oct. 31, Willie Nelson and the young bluegrass whizzes of Nickel Creek play the Patriot Center. Marty Stuart, a hugely gifted guitarist who played mandolin for Earl Scruggs before starting a solo career, plays the Rams Head in Annapolis on Thursday.
Alt-country lovers -- or anyone who thinks "Hee Haw" is retro-cool -- should head to the Rams Head on Sept. 15 for BR549. Victoria Williams and her husband, Mark Olson, formerly of the Jayhawks, play Iota on Sept. 24. On the more polished side, there's Suzy Bogguss, who handles both mainstream country and "O Brother"-type material in her shows. She yodels, too. You'll find her at the Birchmere Oct. 6.
For neo-Southern rock, nothing beats the Drive-By Truckers, who hail from Alabama and sing cussed tales about their doomed heroes, Lynyrd Skynyrd, on their overlooked "Southern Rock Opera," released last year (Saturday at Iota). Those pining for the real grimy deal could spend the evening with Molly Hatchet, which flirts with disaster at Jaxx on Oct. 5. Or if you prefer something not quite so . . . gnarly, try country-pop hunk Toby Keith, an Oklahoman whose "Unleashed" album briefly sat atop the Billboard charts in June. He's at Nissan Pavilion on Saturday.
A couple of '70s teen idols are coming to town: Leif Garrett and his band F8 play Jaxx on Sept. 27, and a couple of weeks later, on Oct. 12, the Partridge Family's David Cassidy appears at the Warner Theatre. Or revisit the ghoulish side of the Me Decade with Alice Cooper, one of the original shock rockers. Now that we've got metal bands like Slipknot, who don fright masks and vomit a lot, Mr. Cooper's act seems almost comforting. He's at Merriweather Post on Oct. 15.
There's soul from the '70s at the Birchmere on Sept. 19, when Isaac Hayes arrives. Hayes is best known for "Theme From 'Shaft,' " which won him an Academy Award, but he was one of Stax Records' great session men and songwriters, working with Otis Redding and Sam & Dave, among others. He's a guy with some history.
A blast from England's past, Marianne Faithfull, comes to the Birchmere on Sept. 16. There are some interesting co-stars on her latest, "Kissin Time," including Beck, Billy Corgan and Jarvis Cocker of Pulp. For something of the same vintage but a little more bombastic, the Moody Blues play Constitution Hall on Oct. 10.
Until Radiohead gets touring again, get your fill of literate British rock with Doves (Thursday at the 9:30 club) or Super Furry Animals (Sept. 26, same place). Guided by Voices is from Dayton, Ohio, but lead singer Robert Pollard affects a British accent, especially as he gets drunker through the course of an evening. By the encore of the Oct. 11 show (also at the 9:30), he'll sound like Oliver Reed.
It's ladies' punk night at the 9:30 on Oct. 20, with Sleater-Kinney topping the bill and a very promising New York punk trio named the Yeah Yeah Yeahs in the opening slot. Elvis Costello comes back to town after a summer Wolf Trap gig that showcased a little too much of his new album, "When I Was Cruel." Find him at Constitution Hall on Oct. 26. Linda Thompson, who has released a fine comeback album, "Fashionably Late," her first solo disc in more than a decade, comes to the Birchmere on Oct. 28. She's bringing her son, Teddy Thompson. He's not yet a match for his father, Richard, but give the lad time.
Rap's past and future converge for a night -- Sept. 19, to be exact -- at Nation, along with Public Enemy headlining, and Dilated Peoples, a less political trio from the West Coast.
||That's a good article?..this guy is a major prick who has written nothing but garbage about the stones...
[Edited by jb]
||Yeah, that was backhanded praise at best. To lump the Stones in with that group of has-beens is the ultimate kiss-off. The guy is a major prick.