Political Commentary Rants / Product Raves / Rock Reviews
These webpages feature copies of my political commentary and also a musical review column called "Ranting, Raving, and Rocking ", published in many issues of AMP - American Music Press magazine, which publishes my other column, "So You Want to Be in a Rock & Roll Band? ", a music business advice column for independent rock bands.
This column is in three parts, in each issue except the first one. The first part is called This Month's Rant and is an editorial commentary on political, social, and cultural issues. The second part is called This month's Rave is and is raves about products and other things that I like. The third part is called This Month's Rocking is my reviews of great rock & roll bands that I want people to know about, especially those that are underappreciated.
You can click on each link on the right side here that goes to each column that has been published so far. Also, there are other links for related websites.
What is Ranting?
A Rant or Ranting is defined as "making a loud bombastic declamation expressed with strong emotion".
There is a fine art to ranting. When ranting, one is not trying to convey facts, but trying to convey emotion instead. A good rant follows a typical "rant format”, which may involve a lack of specifics, references, and bibliographies. The Rant also involves the use of tangents, repetition, and occasionally irrelevent information if it fits into the theme. A Rant appears to be in direct opposition to academic writing, but is only effective if the writer has good grasp on his subject matter. A good grasp on the subject matter means having read and understood the academic writing on the subject. A ranter tries to give you his opinion in a very heated emotional appeal intented to persuade the reader to agree.
Some well known ranters include: Henry Rollins, Nick Cave, John
Knox, Jean Paul Marat, the Marquis de Sade, Judge Roy Bean, Ezra Pound, Wilhelm
Reich, Timothy Leary, Szandor La Vey, Hunter Thompson, Michel Tournier, Aleister Crowley, and others.
Here is an example of a rant: From Hunter Thompson's Generation of Swine (Vintage Books, NY, 1989), ranting about George Bush, the first Bush president:
It is difficult for the ordinary voter to come to grips with the notion that a truly evil man, a truthless monster with the brains of a king rat and the soul of a cockroach, is about to be sworn in as president of the United States for the next four years.... And he will bring his gang in with him, a mean network of lawyers and salesmen and pimps who will loot the national treasury, warp the laws, mock the rules and stay awake 22 hours a day looking for at least one reason to declare war, officially, on some hapless tribe in the Sahara or heathen fanatic like the Ayatollah Khomeini.
As you can see, if people had listened to the appeal in his rant, you would have been spared the same things but even worse that resulted from the election (stolen or faked) of the second evil Bush president.
What is Raving?
The defininition of Raving is declaiming wildly or to utter or express in a frenzied manner. Raving sounds like Ranting, but the difference is that one raves in a positive manner about how great something is, while one rants in a negative manner about how horrible something is. Thus, raving means expressing very enthusiastic wild and frenzied praise, such as a "rave review".
Some well known raving reviewers include Dave Marsh, Lester Bangs, and Richard Meltzer.
What is Rocking?
The defininition of Rocking is play or listen to Rock & Roll music in an enthusiastic and exciting way. Someone or something that "Rocks" means the same thing, that they are great and mighty in their performance.
Thus, Rocking means someone or something that deserves very enthusiatic praise for making great Rock & Roll music.
About AMP magazine
American Music Press, or AMP for short, has existed in magazine form since September of 2002. AMP started [and continues still] as a free monthly publication made available mainly in California. Martinez, CA-based AMP Magazine, covers a variety of music, ranging from punk rock, to hardcore, to indie rock, to metal. It is the best magazine money can buy. I mean it.
Every two months, AMP combines the past two local issues and releases a nationwide edition, complete with a free sampler CD, all for $1.99. $1.99 gets you 200+ pages of interviews, articles, and columns from the likes of Russ Rankin, Al Quint, Sal Canzonieri, Jack Rabid, and guest columnists, along with record reviews and news. Not just that, but you will always get a sAMPler CD, containing tracks from a ton of bands from all different labels, along with other free stuff like stickers, pins, label samplers, and if you're lucky, an interpunk gift certificate. All for only $1.99.
Some bands that have graced the cover of AMP include NOFX, Against Me!, AFI, The Casualties, Alkaline Trio, The Distillers, and more.
AMP recently branched out into the record-making business with the release of American Music Press Presents. The compilation series' first volume is dedicated to the genre of hardcore, with more to come in the future.