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Nels named in Rolling Stones 100 Greatest Guitarists of All-Time List


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And to be clear, Rolling Stone lost credibility when Hunter Thompson left. Any article from a publication that hasn't been relevant for more than a quarter century is not one I will bother to look up the criteria for one of their best of lists. Thought their 100 greatest Beatle songs special edition, that helped to pay hush money to Jann Wenners ex wife to keep quiet about his affinity for male suitors, stands as a bellewhether re: the credibility of Rolling Stone.

 

I suppose something I have to remember is that the magazine changed a few years ago, or whenever it was. I was looking at some recent issues at the laundromat the other day. It seems to me they are a souped up Entertainment Weekly these days.

 

I would think not too many people want to read long interviews or articles anymore. I figure they don't have much going on outside of celebrity news and short articles - except to do issues that have to do with some sort of list.

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I suppose something I have to remember is that the magazine changed a few years ago, or whenever it was. I was looking at some recent issues at the laundromat the other day. It seems to me they are a souped up Entertainment Weekly these days.

 

I would think not too many people want to read long interviews or articles anymore. I figure they don't have much going on outside of celebrity news and short articles - except to do issues that have to do with some sort of list.

 

I've actually had the opposite experience. I haven't paid much attention to RS in recent years, but I've read two issues in the last couple of months (the Steve Jobs and George Clooney issues) and was pretty impressed with the length of their feature stories, and their in depth political coverage.

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In the current issue of Rolling Stone, there's a letter to the editor from Nels:

 

I am flattered and a little astonished to be included in your "100 Greatest Guitarists" list. I wanted to point out, however, that Wilco's song "Spiders (Kidsmoke)," singled out as one of the examples of my work, actually features extended guitar forays by our leader, Jeff Tweedy, not me! I wasn't even in the band when this song was recorded. Got to give credit where credit is due. But thanks, everyone. Nels Cline/Number 82, Wilco lead guitarist
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by our leader, Jeff Tweedy

 

This line made me chuckle a bit, for some reason. I picture Twiki's voice going through his head while he wrote this.

Tweedy probably made him throw it in.

 

Nice letter, though - ran into him at a club a couple of times and he seemed like a genuine nice guy.

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Yeah, he's a super nice, down to earth dude. I had the pleasure of meeting him in Asheville a couple years ago at one of his Singers shows. I shook his hand and complimented him on a great performance, and he was genuinely appreciative. I'm sure he gets that all the time, but I could tell he really apreciated the compliment.

 

And if you haven't been to a Singers show yet, don't miss the chance.. It is complete madness. Awesome..

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I find it very odd that, for some reason, every time someone mentions Rolling Stone magazine on VC, the post somehow devolves into a Rolling Stone bashing fest. Apparently, Nels does not find the magazine "irrelevant" or completely lacking in credibility, as he took the time to write them a very nice thank you letter. Maybe he is well aware that every time Wilco makes a move, RS documents it. For a band that is little known to the general public, they get a lot of press in the mag.

 

As for their articles, unless one is a diehard right-winger (in which case their political coverage will drive you nuts), I think they offer excellent feature articles - especially when they interview someone I am interested in - and Matt Taibbi does a good job filling the Hunter Thompson role. Of course, no one can replace Hunter, but then again, he was a shadow of his former self for about the last 10 years of his life.

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Well, the magazine is a far cry from what it use to be. I'd say what Nels really pointed out is the lack of research that goes into such articles these days. Or at least, the lack of fact checking. I often notice things like that in music articles these days.

 

I never read Rolling Stone for political stuff. I read it for the music news, and the long interviews with muscians.

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I'd say what Nels really pointed out is the lack of research that goes into such articles these days. Or at least, the lack of fact checking. I often notice things like that in music articles these days.

 

That goes for any article on the web. Even the major news sites get the basic facts wrong all the time. Journalism in general has suffered enormously over the past 10 years or so.

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As for their articles, unless one is a diehard right-winger (in which case their political coverage will drive you nuts), I think they offer excellent feature articles - especially when they interview someone I am interested in - and Matt Taibbi does a good job filling the Hunter Thompson role. Of course, no one can replace Hunter, but then again, he was a shadow of his former self for about the last 10 years of his life.

 

I agree, excellent features writing in RS, national affairs desk, Taibbi, tv and sports pieces. At this point, I'm probably 75/25% in terms of reading the features/political coverage vs. music coverage.

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I miss the days of RS as a folded paper "underground" periodical with info on rock music that was not covered elsewhere. Now we have a glossy mag that seems to mimic People and E. As for the political, I am a conservative and I find the articles not only absurd in their one dimension but offensive and unnecessary...might as well read The Nation if I was so inclined.

 

As for the guitarists, I question the whole need to "rank" albums, guitarists, drummers, etc. In fact, the R@R Hall of Fame is a joke. I mean the whole idea of rockers sitting for cocktails and dinners to "honor" themselves is hallucinatory. As for the inductees...The Beastie Boys???? Chili Peppers???? Perhaps talented but Hall of Fame? Are you kidding me?

 

I believe there are more talented guitar players in Nashville than most so called top 100 guitar players on that list...How to do you decide? Do you have to? How about "favorite" guitar players instead of best?

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The Beastie Boys???? Chili Peppers???? Perhaps talented but Hall of Fame? Are you kidding me?

 

I agree that the Hall of Fame is a little too lax... It should be saved for the greatest rock bands in history.. Beatles, Led Zepplin, Pink Floyd, etc. Chli Peppers? Nope. Beastie Boys were/are definitely great but not even really a rock band. They are their own genre.

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I find it very odd that, for some reason, every time someone mentions Rolling Stone magazine on VC, the post somehow devolves into a Rolling Stone bashing fest. Apparently, Nels does not find the magazine "irrelevant" or completely lacking in credibility, as he took the time to write them a very nice thank you letter. Maybe he is well aware that every time Wilco makes a move, RS documents it. For a band that is little known to the general public, they get a lot of press in the mag.

 

 

I wanted to point out, however, that Wilco's song "Spiders (Kidsmoke)," singled out as one of the examples of my work, actually features extended guitar forays by our leader, Jeff Tweedy, not me! I wasn't even in the band when this song was recorded.

I laughed out loud.

Such a congenial and gracious man.

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