They Won't Go Quietly

As much as some of us might fantasize about it, becoming a household name obviously has cruel consequences. This is particularly true for artists who are remembered for a single work while the rest of their oeuvre gets completely overlooked. Case in point: that group of charmingly longhaired British boogie rockers that went (and still goes) by the name Foghat. In case you have your doubts about how deep the blade of fame cut these guys, all you have to do is try naming even one of the band's songs besides the classic rock staple "Slow Ride."

Yet before we break out the violins, one fact remains: Foghat is still standing, even after the band has been essentially done in, twice. The first time, according to the widely accepted version of music history annals, the death blow came in the early Eighties at the hands of disco and punk. The second demise occurred when frontman Dave Peverett passed away in 2000. But apparently, once you've survived disco, you can survive anything — even death itself — because Foghat's slow ride clearly isn't over yet. Wily group of road dogs that it is, the band persists today with replacement Charlie Huhn at the helm.

It's true that current circumstances leave drummer Roger Earl the band's sole original member. But as devotees and casual listeners look on in disbelief and ask why, the band may yet enjoy the last laugh. Arena rock, it seems, might be making a comeback, though it never technically went away. This was foreshadowed by Richard Linklater's 1993 film Dazed and Confused, which actually ends with a sequence where the song "Slow Ride" is used to brilliant effect.

Yes, this trendiness has obvious negative consequences. Simply take a look at your friends' haircuts, mustache styles, and choice of clothing. For fans who never abandoned arena rock, its irony-stained re-emergence as the "new" cool thing is justifiably irritating. On the other hand, we can also enjoy unexpected benefits such as N.E.R.D.'s dive into a classic rock sound on its 2003 album, Fly or Die. Come to think of it, would it be much of a stretch if Foghat submitted to the golden production touch of N.E.R.D.'s Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo? Don't bet against it.


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