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Who's On Broadway?

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And how do you feel about that characterization?
I think it's terrific. I'm happy I'm not the good old boy. I think Roger and I are continuing to find ourselves in that context and trying to honor it. When we meet to discuss what we might do in the future, we have to be very careful that we don't simply drag over the same coals again and again. Because I can't – and won't – continue to address history. I did that with the Who on the road in 1989, and I was happy to do it once as a celebration. But whatever the rewards and whatever the temptations, I don't think I would do that again. We have a good dialogue. We're trying to find a way to do something together – maybe as the Who, maybe not as the Who – which is honest and real. It will be difficult. And the stereotype of those two figures is really what I'm addressing in Psychoderelict.

How so?
It's the story of two guys from a band. I'm projected about ten years into the future – both of them in their mid-fifties and struggling with their dreams and vision for the future, and to some extent with their perversity as a result of having been stars. It also deals with my cynical view of the press's role in all this.

Oh, good.
I hope it's going to be good fun for all. I should finish it and hand it in by the end of February. I'm working with a lot of my usual musicians, and Ian Broudie has produced a couple things. The material itself is much more down-the-middle rock & roll than some of my recent work.

Any song titles you care to share?
The only title which is actually becoming in any sense pivotal is one called "English Boy." It's about the emergence of the modern punk.

Is it your rap tune?
It's a bit rappy. Actually, it's something like a cross between "My Generation" and "Face the Face." I'm really proud of it.

So, is the theme of Psychoderelict that you hope you die before you get really old?
[Laughs] The funny thing about that, which I realized the other day, is that if I went back to the time when I said that and knew that I hadn't died before I became old, I think I would have been fucking angry. In a sense I've betrayed myself in that respect. But perhaps if I had died before I got old, I might have been forgotten. You tend to hope you'll become James Dean or Jimi Hendrix, but a lot of dead people aren't remembered at all. So I haven't been able to achieve that one great ambition I had when I was nineteen. But I've tried to compensate by actually making myself happy.

This story is from the March 18th, 1993 issue of Rolling Stone.

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

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Song Stories

“Vans”

The Pack | 2006

Berkeley, California rappers the Pack made their footwear choice clear in 2006 with the song "Vans." The track caught the attention of Too $hort, who signed them to his imprint. MTV refused to play the video for the song, though, claiming it was essentially a commercial for the product. Rapper Lil' B disagreed. "I didn’t know nobody [at] Vans," he said. "I was just a rapper who wore Vans." Even without MTV's support, Lil' B recognized the impact of the track. "God blessed me with such a revolutionary song… People around my age know who really started a lot of the dressing people are into now."

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