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Long Hair on Old Men

Caught some of the Grammys in betwixt grading papers. Loved all the Ray Charles stuff but wondered why they give a guy his biggest honors when he's forced to watch from that Big Piano Bench in the Sky. Loved Norah Jones, Jamie Foxx, Bonnie Raitt, was glad to see Maroon 5 and Green Day win, and the "Across the Universe" ensemble number proved to be pretty good for one of those Cecil B. DeMille-type cast-of-thousands extravaganzas (by the way, does Tim McGraw sleep in that hat?), but -- a big but -- that tribute to Southern Rock was an absolute horror show. It reminded us all of the fundamental rule: Long Hair on Old Men Is Always a Bad Idea. What a woolly, musty, rode-hard bunch that was. Also pretty consistently off-key. You have to hope the warbled rendition of "Freebird" drove a final stake in that song's evil heart. What those guys did to the great "Fooled Around and Fell in Love" should be investigated by the FBI (mental note: Elvin Bishop secret twin of Bob Dylan?). Dickie Betts may have rambled a bit too much over the years. We'll give Stevie Wonder a pass on the long-hair rule -- he can do no wrong -- but Aerosmith's Steven Tyler must be a great-grandad by now and should donate his tight pants to the Smithsonian.

By Joel Achenbach  |  February 14, 2005; 10:08 AM ET
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