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Week in Review: The Black Keys Blast Nickelback in 'Rolling Stone' Cover Story

Also: Van Halen rock out in New York City, 'Jersey Shore' and 'Portlandia' return to tv and more

January 6, 2012 5:30 PM ET
The Black Keys on the cover of Rolling Stone, issue 1148.
The Black Keys on the cover of Rolling Stone, issue 1148.
Photograph by Theo Wenner

Garage rock veterans the Black Keys are the first artists on the cover of Rolling Stone in 2012, and they took the opportunity to knock other bands who they think give rock a bad name these days. "Rock & roll is dying because people became OK with Nickelback being the biggest band in the world," says drummer Patrick Carney. "So they became OK with the idea that the biggest rock band in the world is always going to be shit – therefore you should never try to be the biggest rock band in the world. Fuck that! Rock & roll is the music I feel the most passionately about, and I don't like to see it fucking ruined and spoon-fed down our throats in this watered-down, post-grunge crap, horrendous shit. When people start lumping us into that kind of shit, it's like, ‘Fuck you,' honestly."

Photos: Our Hopes and Fears for 2012

Also, Rolling Stone reported from Van Halen's gig at a tiny club in Manhattan, interviewed Velvet Revolver's Dave Kushner about their one-off reunion concert, talked to Wild Flag guitarist Carrie Brownstein about the new season of her sketch comedy show Portlandia, analyzed this week's pop charts and looked back on this week in rock history.

Photos: The Sporty Side of Rockers

In pop culture, Peter Travers answered your questions about the movies, we listed off the 20 must-see shows of the winter television season and we recapped the premiere of the new season of Jersey Shore.

Photos: Random Notes

We also posted your favorite songs of 2011, as determined by a readers' poll. Our question for you this week is: What is the most exciting tour of 2012? You can answer on our website, at facebook.com/rollingstone or on Twitter using the #weekendrock hashtag.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

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Song Stories

“Wake Up Everybody”

John Legend and the Roots | 2010

A Number One record by Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes in 1976 (a McFadden- and Whitehead-penned classic sung by Teddy Pendergrass) inspired the title and lead single from Wake Up!, John Legend's tribute album to message music. The more familiar strains of "Wake Up Everybody" also fit his agenda. "It basically sums up, in a very concise way, all the things we were thinking about when we were putting this record together in that it's about justice, doing the right thing and coming together to make the world a better place," he said. Vocalists Common and Melanie Fiona assist Legend on this mission to connect.

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