Cocaine, tattoo’s and defacing The Clash. You’re going to have to do better than that.

Being in the news for breaking a ‘Golden rule’ doesn’t exactly mirror the great rebellion brought by the new wave revolution of the 50’s, or run parallel to the 1970’s punk movement, does it? Try telling X-Factors Frankie Cocozza that. The blow-snorting Brightonian has landed himself in hot water, and has turned the publics perceptions of youthful rebellion sour once more. Well, at least he thinks he has.

“Don’t accept the old order. Get rid of it”. Back in the mid seventies, these messiah like passages that quavered off of his raspy tongue summed up everything rebellion and punk culture represented. Anarchy, anti-conformism and freelance recreational mayhem, as if it was the most natural pass time in the world. Surprisingly, tattooing the names of all the speculative females you’ve claimed to have spent the night with on your arse was not quite what Johnny Rotten meant by objecting to the new order.

In a matter of weeks, the X-Factors Frankie Cocozza has gone from being another anonymous jelly bean in our British pick ‘n’ mix, to a media sensation. Bearing his painted bottom live on national television was a nice way to introduce himself, as he began his brief claim to fame on saturday night ITV television. Gathering a pre-teen fan base, and receiving a torrent of grumpy groans from the fathers of this particular collective of fans, an abrupt demise followed Frankie’s antics.

The flagitious producers of the talent show booted Cocozza off for breaking a ‘Golden rule’ of the show. A golden rule? Rings out the faint sound of the laws abided by in primary school. As a concept, Frankie Cocozza believes that he is made of an indestructible, versatile and unobtainable material. In actual fact, he is made of flesh and bone, just like the rest of us. To him, we boil and harden sitting at the same desk, filling out the same paper work and doing the same things for the same people day in and day out, while the sun gleefully shines out of his arse. Maybe it’s time Frankie was let into a few home truths.

Over the years, it has taken much, much more to gain rock and roll legend status than just snorting a few lines of cocaine. Jim Morrison, late singer of psych-rock quartet The Doors, used to simulate hardcore masturbation and oral sex on fellow band members on stage. That, Frankie Cocozza, is rock and roll. Another example is the antics of The Sex Pistols in their infamous interview with Bill Grundy. Swearing, smoking and bringing their roadies on set with them sparked off the fuse of the British punk phenomena.

Punk rock redefined the rock era in the mid 1970’s. These were the ever presently nostalgic and manic days were you could walk into a club wearing a suburban suit and domesticated haircut, and walk out five minutes later without your eyebrows and covered in cigarette burns on your scrotum. Jools Holland, former keyboardist of new wave outfit Squeeze, recalls walking into the after party of a Ramones gig and conversing with Joey Ramone while a groupie was “performing an act upon his member”. Now, you don’t get that on the X-Factor, do you?

So far, this article may pragmatically insinuate that I may be laying into the state of music as a generalisation. The fact of the matter is, actually, music is getting better and better. The creativity and presence of bands has evolved so much over the years, as well as the fan base of bands and artists. Rock and roll may not be a pure bread of musical pedigree anymore, but the tangents it spirals off into offers more varied and styles of music to date.Live performances, acoustic sets and studio sessions still pile the fans into the box office and record shops, regardless of reviews and opinions. Despite the drawbacks of the technology factors with CD’s going the way of vinyl, and slowly becoming obsolete, amongst other things, the state of music has never been healthier, or more hell raising.

Disputably, the cynics will tell you that the ecstasy fueled rave days are over, Woodstockian hippy fiasco’s have died, and the ripping out of safety pins from ears has been blocked by health and safety. However, the postmodernists of today will tell you, that these eras have all joined together, rather than perished. Recreational drugs use amongst festivals, gigs and even lazy days in the park is still rife. Yes, it’s very, very illegal. But surely, that’s what rock and roll is?

Conclusively, it’s people like Cocozza that have created the assumption that ‘rock and roll is dead’. The majority of modern music is continuously evolving and maturing with age, regardless of what the critics say. The Cocozza influence, thankfully, will drown into the past, along with Jedward, The Fast Food Rockers, and most of Foreigner. Flicking back the pages of the musical history book, it’s easy to see why Frankie Cocozza wont make it into the rock and roll hall of fame. He’s not talented, he has no rock or punk factor about him, and he has no significant following of any kind.

So Frankie, you can take your cocaine, keep your silly arse tattoo’s and womanize all you like. Evidently, the facts weigh up against you. You’re about as rock and roll as Enya, and nothing’s going to change that.


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