Last night was the 12-12-12-12 concert. Because of fortuitous planning, Hurricane Sandy had the foresight to destroy much of New York and New Jersey in 2012 so we could have a concert with such a name. Had this hurricane hit next year, the victims would, clearly, be out of luck. The numbers stand for December 12, 2012 with all the performers born in 1912.
I was going to rant about the bar that has been lowered for benefit concerts and my fear that in the future, there will be a sense of obligation to have a concert for most any bad thing. But I won't reflect on that -- I leave it up to you to imagine the lineup for the benefit concerts for Nor'easter Ralph, Heatwave Myrtle, Fender Bender Simba and Hangnail Persephone.
My problem today is with the selection of artists for last night. You have to understand, I am a music fan. A big one. And my tastes do run to the 60's to 70's classic rock so last night's artists should have been right up my alley. But I felt more let down than anything else. In my mind, these artists all have good voices and, well, hair (except Roger Daltry who has been nairing his chest every morning since 1955). What I saw last night really made me sad. It was like watching a teaser for next year's obituaries. I almost tweeted to the Who that I'd hoped they'd died before they got old. Then I realized that I don't have a twitter account.
But then I got to thinking. If these monsters of the rock-age hadn't shown up, who would have been the stars of the show? Would we all have rallied around Justin Bieber and One Direction? Or would the phone lines had lit up if Ke$sha was up there? And what will happen if (God forbid) there is a storm in 40 years? Who are the big name stars who will have the staying power to hobble onto stage and play a spate of their hits from what will then be yesteryear, but which is not just "year." Who is around? Tom Petty? The Foo Fighters? Weezer? Graham Nash (that guy never seems to age)? Do we really expect that Limp Bizkit or Eminem will galvanize future America? Who will show up for a fund raiser in 2040 starring the Goo Goo Dolls, Metallica, Guster and Dr. Dog (h/t Rabbi Fleischmann for those 2)?
I think that this, more than anything, should drive our scientists and super villains to develop weather control devices so we can avoid the kind of concert that did not seem out of place on public television.