If you Google the phrase “the most manly rock bands” you might be surprised to find the first 7 or 8 links are for websites selling men’s wedding bands. Now, if that doesn’t exemplify the void of maleness in our society I don’t know what does.
It got me to thinking, in this age of wokeness and the #MeToo movement, are manly rock bands destined for the trash heap of history, or worse yet erased from history altogether for their “toxic masculinity”? And in this era of the pussyfication of modern men, who most personifies the once-great testosterone-fueled era of rock music?
Remember that classic scene in “This Is Spinal Tap” where the band is asked why their audience consists almost entirely of teenage boys? Christopher Guest responds that the females are “quite fearful” when they see them on stage in their tight trousers and run screaming from their concerts because they have armadillos in those trousers.
Sadly, gone are the days of a guy with a guitar slung down to his knees, cranking out an ear-splitting riff dripping with sweaty testosterone and a rude attitude. Never again will we bang our heads to songs like “Wang Dang Sweet Poontang” or “Ram It Down”. Gone forever are songs extolling the virtues of beer drinkin’ and hell raisin’.
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It is indeed a sad time for rock music.
So as a tribute to those days gone by I have compiled this list of the top ten manliest rock bands of all time.
First the Criteria:
THE FEMALE QUOTIENT: Chicks should mostly HATE these bands or at least as a whole not LOVE them. However if your woman does dig any of these guys, she’s a real keeper!
THE SENSITIVITY QUOTIENT: There is no room in manly music for sensitivity or wussiness; however, a love ballad or two will not disqualify an otherwise manly bunch of guys keepin’ it real.
THE IMAGE QUOTIENT: A manly image both on stage and off is paramount. You can’t be a ramblin’ man on stage and a pussy-whipped beta male at home. You gotta’ live the life. Image should also include album covers. Cover art of a zombie eating a human skull in the bed of a pick-up truck is great, poinsettias in the bed of a truck, not so much. In fact, flowers of any kind are only acceptable on an album cover when a skull or a zombie is also present.
THE HAIRINESS QUOTIENT: A manly rock musician is almost always a hairy guy. This can be a matted caveman mane or slicked down with Brylcreem (no hairspray please!) as well as some facial or chest and back hairiness. A shaved head is acceptable so long as it fits the other criteria.
THE KEYBOARDS QUOTIENT: Manly rock music is guitar and bass-driven. PERIOD!
THE BEER QUOTIENT: Do listening to these bands make you want to crack open a cold one or get in line for the keg? Yup, that’s a manly rock band.
Now the List in No Particular Order:
1) AC/DC (Bon Scott Era)
While both incarnations of AC/DC would be acceptable as manly, the Bon Scott years are far and away more so. With such in your face songs as Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, Can I Sit Next To You Girl? and Big Balls coupled with Angus Young’s raw, ear ringing lead guitar and the unmistakable, almost satanic voice of Bon Scott (which scared the panties off many a 17-year-old girl) this band’s placement on the list is a no brainer. Just take the song T.N.T. It’s about a badass dude who, if you dare to cross him, will beat the crap out of you, then screw every woman that’s important to you just because he can.
Sadly in 1980 Bon Scott died by choking on his own vomit after a night of heavy drinking. But honestly, if you’re going to choke to death on something, is there anything more manly than your own vomit? Well, maybe someone else’s vomit, but you get my point. And then Bon’s replacement in AC/DC, Brian Johnson, could be considered the perfect specimen of manliness based solely on the fact that he looked more like a longshoreman than a rock star and his voice sounded as if he was gargling razor blades and battery acid. AC/DC is manly incarnate.
2) TED NUGENT
Despite the Spandex and his rock-solid sobriety, The Nuge is quite possibly the manliest of all musicians in rock music history. Anyone who rides a buffalo on stage, wields a real machine gun on stage and shoots flaming arrows on stage, is a REAL man’s man. By sheer definition a real man must have a no-holds-barred sense of humor, too; a real man will always make fun of his best friend and say the most inappropriate things at the most inappropriate time; it’s in our DNA. And as a guy who’s spent a lot of time with Ted (we worked together on a radio show in Detroit), I can tell you he does that a lot. But he’s also always there to help and will defend his best friend at all costs. He’ll also always tell you just how he feels about things and let the chips fall where they may. A real man doesn’t mince words and isn’t afraid of offending you. And that’s our Ted.
…..Not to mention the fact Ted hunts and kills his own food and after dinner writes such touching lyrics as, “She’s so sweet when she yanks on my meat, Down on the street you know she can’t be beat” or “I can make a pussy purr with the stroke of my hand.” Teddly definitely belongs here on the list.
Regardless of the heavy use of synthesizers in some recordings, the sheer complexity of their compositions, their eclectic lyrical motifs which draw heavily on science fiction, fantasy and political philosophy make Rush a true “thinking man’s” rock band. And the fact that women seem to always say, “I can’t stand that guy’s voice!” these guys have secured their place in manly rock band history. Besides Geddy Lee’s so damned ugly we had to include them.
No band in rock music history exemplifies rugged individualism quite like Motörhead; in fact, if the Hells Angels were a band, they would be Motörhead! They’ve been credited with creating and influencing numerous musical scenes, thrash metal and speed metal especially. Motörhead single-handedly transitioned both punk rock and heavy metal from the very beginning. Also, Lemmy’s unique microphone positioning on stage was ultra-cool. Guys love Motörhead the same way we love the smell of the exhaust from a Harley Davidson and women will just never get it; so it goes without saying, no manly rock band list would be complete without them.
5) LYNYRD SKYNYRD
As you can tell this article is written with tongue firmly planted in cheek. But, if I can be serious for a moment, part of being a “real man” is the understanding of the importance of hard work. And Lynyrd Skynyrd was one of the hardest working bands ever. Ronnie Van Zant has been described as a slave driver early on, insisting on 6-hour rehearsals seven days a week and sometimes performing as many as three shows a day. This is said to be why there were so many personnel changes over the years.
But the results were that they became one of the tightest live bands of their time. There were no “jams” at a Skynyrd show; everything was note for note exactly as the album tracks were. And while they could party hard after the show with the best of them, Ronnie wouldn’t tolerate any sloppiness on stage EVER! Just like a man who busts his ass 10 hours a day at work, five days a week and then spends the weekend in a barroom, Lynyrd Skynyrd personified the concept of a “workin’ hard, playin’ hard” rock and roll band. Plus they weren’t the least bit skittish about giving hippie guru Neil Young the big, bulbous, hairy knuckled middle finger in Sweet Home Alabama; so that alone is good enough for inclusion on this list.
6) BLACK SABBATH
In 1969, four guys from Birmingham, England decided to drive a stake through the heart of the pussified flower power music scene of the time by single-handedly pioneering what would become known as Heavy Metal! Like good Bar-B-Q, Sabbath music is meant to be played low and slow with lyrical images of the end of the world, Satan flapping his wings, monsters crushing villages and loneliness and insanity.
Black Sabbath’s dark sound was dismissed by rock critics of the era and the band received virtually no airplay on rock radio at the time. However, teenage boys gravitated to them anyway and becoming inspired, started their own bands and metal music became the biggest rock phenomenon of the ’70s and ’80s. Black Sabbath deserves their place in manly rock history if for nothing else, dropping a musical nuclear device and vaporizing that God awful hippie music of the ’60s.
7) ZZ TOP
What do you get when you throw Texas Boogie, Delta Blues and some Good Ol’ Rock and Roll into a blender with lime juice and tequila and serve it with tortillas, rice, refried beans and copious amounts of Texas Pete’s hot sauce? Well, ZZ Top of course. Being a teenager in Houston in the ’70s, Frank, Billy and Dusty were considered living legends to my friends and me. It wasn’t unusual to run into one of them at the grocery store or while Waitin’ For The Bus.
In fact, they even played my high school prom in 1975. And with a collection of songs covering subjects like a whorehouse on the range, headin’ downtown in search of some Tush and givin’ your girlfriend a Pearl Necklace while she dances to the Tube Snake Boogie, not to mention those awesome chicks in their MTV videos, ZZ Top is about as manly as it gets. And the fact that most gals outside of Texas say all their songs sound the same only serves to prove my point even more.
8) JUDAS PRIEST
So, can a band with a gay lead singer that cranks out some seriously fast and furious heavy metal be considered for our manly rock band list, well, when that band is Judas Priest, the answer is, “Oh hell yes!”
….And besides, were any of you “shocked” when Rob Halford came out? When he rode on stage astride a full dress black Harley in the studs and biker hat with sunglasses and short bleach-blond hair, how could you not know he was a Leather Queen? We knew it, but we didn’t care because he’s an amazingly powerful singer and frontman spitting out high octane flames for that rapid-fire double bass beat and twin-turbocharged guitars that were born to lead at breakneck speed. And ironically Rob Halford actually looks less gay now than he did back in the day.
9) JIMI HENDRIX
When you think about the fact that Hendrix’s mainstream career lasted only four years you have to admit he sure made the most of the limited time he had. And I contend he belongs on our list because even if Hendrix wasn’t the first guy to use his guitar as an extension of his penis, he was most definitely the first to use it as effectively as he did. Reports state many women would experience multiple orgasms just watching him perform.
Also, consider this, a real man will always make do with what he has to work with. If he runs out of scotch tape while wrapping his wife’s Christmas gifts, a real man doesn’t rush to the Hallmark store at the mall; he grabs his duct tape and gets the job done. Hendrix was left-handed, and rather than buy an overpriced left-handed guitar he simply turned his Strat upside down and restrung it. Now, that’s how a real man solves a problem.
10) GUNS N’ ROSES
This was a hard one. I couldn’t decide between Van Halen and GNR. In the end, I could not in good faith include Van Halen in the Top Ten based on the “Valerie Situation”. Due to the fact that the ever pussy-whipped Eddie Van Halen gave in to the demands of his overbearing bitch of a wife, Valerie Bertinelli, and squashed a reunion with David Lee Roth in 1996 resulting in the horrible decision to add Gary Cherone as Van Halen’s new lead singer (I mean, seriously? Gary Cherone? Are you freakin’ kidding me?) All I could do was give them an honorable mention.
And say what you will about Guns N’ Roses, these guys belong on this list because, just like what Sabbath did to the flower power bands of the ’60s, GNR was solely responsible for the justifiable homicide they committed on the glam bands of the 80’s, such as Warrant and Poison.
Well, there you have it. This was a ruff assignment because there are so many great groups you want to include, but I was limited to just ten.
This is meant to spark discussion and get y’all thinking about what our Uber-Feminized, Snowflake Society has become and what it’s done to rock and roll music. So, bring this up at the bar after work or the barbershop or your buddy’s garage while you’re wrenching on your truck and let’s figure out what we can do to stop to political correctness dead in its tracks!
With a voice that’s been described as sounding like a pair of work boots walking down a gravel road, Jaz McKay is an unashamed, rock ribbed conservative American patriot with a populist message often delivered with his dry, sarcastic sense of humor, bringing his life experiences to his radio show every day. Proud to be politically incorrect he holds the distinction of being incarcerated in Facebook jail nine separate times in the span of one year.
After more than 40 years in broadcasting Jaz has entertained listeners literally all over the world including stints in cities like New Orleans, Miami, Detroit and Cleveland and even turning around a station on the island of Guam to become an urban power house in the South Pacific. Building audience numbers and station revenue unlike most of his contemporaries, Jaz has a simple philosophy, keep it real and always be unique.
Jaz has worked as a voice actor and appeared in over 40 animated films and TV productions as well as countless radio and television commercials. He’s also performed standup comedy and has fronted four rock and blues bands all over the country.
Jaz McKay is a staunch supporter of the 2nd Amendment and self defense and his hobbies include shooting, collecting vintage toys, and writing poetry.