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    yeah, there was a lot of crap in the 70's--that's what gave rise to the punk scene. it was a rebellion against the record biz, arena rock, and the very idea of rock stars as idols. alice cooper, boston, cheap trick may have had some good songs, but never did all that much for me. and i always hated slop like "free bird" (lynyrd skyryd) and one of the most putrid performances i ever saw was by mick and the stones. another memorably rotten band was called golden earring who had one
    hit record called "radar love". they opened for the who in what was probably the worst double bill i've ever seen.

    like any era era they're was tons of excellent music. david bowie and lou reed did some of their best work in the 70's. almost all of the british and american punk bands were fresh and exciting to see/hear. cbgb's had great shows every week: television,
    talking heads, blondie, ramones, wire, patti smith, cramps, dead boys............

    and that led to more abrasive and experimental stuff like teenage jesus and the jerks, dna, mars, contortions. not exactly *rock*,
    but interesting to hear all the same.
    "...probably the worst double bill i've ever seen."

    Right, that would be Madison Square Garden, June 1974. Not a great week for The Who, but both of those bands could rock like fuck.
    On the whole I avoid tribute bands like the plague , but theres a Brighton band out there called "Gabba" who manage to fuse Abba-ish songs done in a Ramones style .....and they do them with style too with title like ...

    "The Pinhead takes it all"

    "Gimme gimme gimme a stormtrooper after midnight"

    If you like the Ramones I'd highly recomend their CD "Leave Stockholm"
    yup, it was MSG, 1974. yeah, no doubt about it the who are a great band. love 'em. but in the context of the 70's a lot of these
    bands were going through a heavy drinking and drug phase, and maybe it was also just a laissez-faire attitude about performing, but many of these bands were just going through the motions and mailing it in. also saw eric clapton about the same time at roosevelt stadium in jersey city in which he was drunk and/or high on smack. one of his worst shows ever. the point being that these events (and others), taken as a whole, contributed to a reaction against corporate/arena rock and to the rise of PUNK.
    Markbursa says:
    "Must admit, the one tribute act I did fancy seeing was The Hideous Replicas, who only played early Fall stuff (up to Slates, I think)."

    That sounds grand although last time I saw The Fall they did a pleasantly rudimentary version of Wings at least.

    If Mark E Smith ever shuffles off this mortal coil (he may be immortal like Keef Richard) I hope there will be a great Fall band (chosen from the vast pool of The Fallen) that will keep the legacy alive a bit like the Bonzo Dog Band or The Blockheads do now...just as long as Frank Skinner doesn't stand in for MES.
    Another mess of my rage!
    I don't know too many tribute bands personally, but must say that with Bowie now not looking as though he is ever going to tour again, Absolute Bowie are a very fine alternative.