Fossil Rock
by C.J. Cain

Oh great, just what we need, another "genre." Where does this one fit in among heavy metal, speed metal, hardcore, thrash, glam, industrial and the rest? It doesn't. It's not a trendy music industry classification, it is a badge of honor. I wear it proudly, just as proudly as I wore my leather jacket - I am proud to be, and have earned the right to be called - a "fossil."

A fossil is defined as " a remnant or trace of an organism of a past geologic age." Damn right, we were bangin' our heads before many of your moms and dads even thought about bangin' the bedsprings. We are the soldiers who first carried the banner of heavy metal, who first grasped our middle and ring fingers with our thumbs and thrust our index and little fingers into the air toward the metal gods. We established the "Metal Ages."

Either you are a fossil or you aren't, there is no middle ground. If you wonder if you qualify, you don't. You still see us at concerts - we are the people you mistake for security. Our hair is probably short, if we have any left, and we are probably wearing the "loose cut" Levi's out of necessity, not out of fashion. When my hometown finally got around to building a civic center, I was among the first in line to see the first concert they booked. The opening act featured a wild little guitarist who performed a solo while riding through the arena on the shoulders of the lead singer. The guitarist was Angus Young, and his transportation was Bon Scott. I saw Def Leppard as an opening act on a triple bill, with Pete Willis on guitar. I was also witness to the genius of Randy Rhodes.

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