My Night With Henry Rollins – Punk Lives On!

Posted in Diary of a Directrix
July 11th, 2010 by Devi Snively (The Directrix)

henry af smYep, that’s trippin’s producer Agustin with Henry Rollins whom we met the other night after his super enlightening performance at Molly Mallone’s.  Rollins is the host of a National Geographic TV show on which Agustin is a special guest.  We’ll let you know when it airs.   In the meantime, oh, Henry – you are a scholar, a gentleman AND a punk rock boy!  Sigh.

DWF15-506840In all seriousness, Rollins is an amazingly well-spoken, inspiring, insightful and hilarious fellow.  He’s also surprisingly shy and endearingly self-deprecating.  But he is STILL total punk rock – in the best sense of the word.  It was somehow comforting to this former punk rock girl who grew up listening to Rollins in his Black Flag days.

hottopic1Truly, punk isn’t dead.  Don’t let those goofy poseurs who don bondage pants and buy their mass-produced punk gear at Hot Topic fool you.  To some, punk is merely some retro fashion statement, a way to “act cool,” but to others of us it was an important part of growing up, expressing ourselves as individuals and a means to find a community (i.e. not clones who get the same piercings, tattoos and hairstyles as everybody else.)  It still is.

holiday-in-cambodiaRollins reminded me of this as he spoke words of inspiration and made a call to action, or at least a reminder of one.  If we aren’t part of the solution, we are part of the problem.  He travels the world with eyes wide open, choosing his battles and fighting each with a mighty vigor.  He lives the “punk rock lifestyle, but the real one – not the messed up one depicted in Sid & Nancy (no offense, Sid & Nancy, I loved you anyway) or the misguided one in SLC Punk (great film, though).  Rollins lives the “punk” that raises consciousness in angry, ironic songs like the Dead Kennedys‘  “Holiday in Cambodia” (which is how this once horribly naive teenager first learned about Pol Pot.)  Punk, used for good, is a vibrant, awareness-raising, constructive way to rebel, to prioritize, to release that pesky angst and channel it into something worthwhile.

clash_clash LPAgustin and I jammed to The Clash on the way home (we didn’t have any Black Flag on us, alas) and suddenly I began to pound my fist repeatedly in the air with all the conviction of a rebellious teenager, but also with the sense of confidence and peace that comes from being well past the pubescent hump and where I finally belong.  Never Mind the Bollocks, indeed – there are battles to be won!  Thanks for keeping the true punk rock spirit alive, Mr Rollins!

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