Rock and Roll is — or should be — at least a bit Dionysian, a little dangerous, a little scary, a little mythical. Once rock becomes business, however, it becomes sleek, packaged, and co-opted. This is why, for example, Johnny Cash rocked harder than, say, Nickelback could ever imagine.
Kim Fowley, however, has occupied a strange spot at the intersection of Bacchan depravity and commerce for more than half a century. He’s a king of trash culture, punk before punk, and a rock and roll cross between Roger Corman and John Waters. He’s best known as the Svengali behind the Runaways, but he’s also the writer of “Alley Oop“, and his songs have been performed by artists from Alice Cooper to Sonic Youth to ELP.
These days, he remains on the fringes of the music business, but he also hosts a show on Little Steven’s Underground Garage on the weekends. You can find all this and more in a fascinating profile from the L.A. Times. Give it a look.
H/T: Eric Alper.