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Rock and roll will never die

I have always considered myself fortunate that the majority of folks in the Kivalliq are music lovers who cast a wide net when it comes to the musical styles they enjoy and embrace.
I'm doubly-blessed by the fact there is a solid core of classic rock fans in the region and I've never – in my almost 21 years here – been at a loss for someone to talk music with who can provide critical insights into the sounds of today and yesteryear and who offers informed opinions on artists and musical genres, not just smothering me with their likes and dislikes.
And, every now and then, a topic comes along that often finds us chatting into the wee hours, trying to get our collective heads around the whys or why-nots of the issue.
Such was the case recently over the furor surrounding Greta Van Fleet and the negative critical reviews concerning their first album (Anthem of the Peaceful Army) in late 2018.
The problem many critics have with the American band is how much it sounds like Led Zeppelin, with lead vocalist Josh Kiszka being almost a sonic mirror image of Zep's Robert Plant.
Greta Van Fleet is not alone when it comes to this type of backlash, with groups such as Kingdom Come, Rival Sons and Wolfmother also getting tarred with the same brush of being nothing more than Zeppelin wannabees.
Ditto the group Airbourne being dismissed out-of-hand by critics for being AC/DC clones, despite two of their four studio releases (Black Dog Barking and Breakin' Outta Hell) being two of the best guitar driven, four-on-the-floor pounding hard rock albums of the past 10 years.
Check-out this band's eight-track bonus DVD that comes with the deluxe edition of Black Dog Barking (Live at Wacken 2011) to see Airbourne rock the show in the middle of the afternoon.
In my humble opinion, Greta Van Fleet is bringing rock stylings from 1969 to 1979 back into the mainstream and introducing it to a whole new generation of young music listeners.
And it's possible a good majority of them just might find themselves sneaking around to take a peek at their dad's, or their granddad's (gasp), playlists to check out similar sounds, while taking a break from the tedium of YouTube.
In addition, should the success of bands like Greta Van Fleet continue, it could possibly lead to the rebirth of 15-million fingers learning how to play, the sale of musical instruments going back on the rise and computer programming taking one on the chin when it comes to making music.
Hey! One can dream, right?
What I find most amusing about the critical knocks on bands like Greta Van Fleet and Wolfmother is that they're being knocked for doing, pretty much, what Led Zeppelin did in their day.
There are precious few rockers in Zeppelin's canon that aren't structured around the 12-bar blues borrowed from the likes of Howlin' Wolf and Muddy Waters.
In many ways, the objections to bands like Greta Van Fleet too closely parallel claims of that's the way it's always been, or, that's the way we've always done it, when it comes to societal change for my comfort.
It's all about the music and if these groups can flame the passion for the sounds of pure, hard-driving rock once again, I'm all for it.
May the curtain fall on gangsta rap and many in the next wave of new musicians look out over the crowd, wink and utter one phrase being hitting their first power chord – "Let There Be Rock!"