General Chaos

Joe Strummer (aka John Graham Mellor) died Sunday, of a heart attack, at 50. His first and greatest band, the Clash, was the band of my teenage years, and for me it was the Only Band That Matters; the Clash took “punk” and redefined its boundaries, subverting pop standards and other musical forms and bending them to their will. Ironically, on Saturday night, my conversation with a neighbor turned to the Clash and their collaboration with Alan Ginsberg (“Do the worm on the Acropolis/Slam-dance cosmopolis/enlighten the populous”).