Mods Vs. Rockers: Five Mock Battles

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Fresh off our trip to AmeriVespa 2010, Rocks Off has come to this conclusion: we are neither a Mod nor a Rocker. We're a Mocker. When you drive around a town as large and car-centric as Houston on a small scooter you get a lot of comments from people, mostly in allusion to Quadrophenia, which seems to be the only insight into scooter culture most people know. (Note to readers: here's a four-minute scooter scene from a the 1960s Bollywood musical An Evening in Paris that you can use as your new reference.)

But the movie Quadrophenia, which culminates in a massive altercation between Elvis- and motorcycle-loving Rockers and Ben Sherman-wearing, soul-listening Mods, inspired us to pit some of our favorite bands together in an imaginary Rumble in Brighton to see who comes out on top. Incidentally, we also just got word that the next Rockers vs. Mods vintage rally in Houston will take place in September.

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The Beatles vs. The Rolling Stones

Both bands started out as Mods, but the Stones quickly evolved into Americana-influenced bluesmen. The Beatles became hippies but then broke up, while the Stones are still touring, which might earn them extra points if it weren't for the fact that they are so damn old. The very fact that Keith Richards is still alive seems in itself to be a miracle, and Mick Jagger pleaded for "Everybody to be cool" while the Hell's Angels were busy stabbing people at Altamont. Normally, Rocks Off would side with the Stones on this one, because, well, duh, but seeing as how the Beatles are probably the most influential band in the history of rock and roll, we gotta give this one to the Mods.

Score: Mods 1, Rockers 0

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The Who vs. Lynyrd Skynyrd

If it weren't for Quadrophenia, thousands of drunken concert-goers would never have shouted out "Freebird," since Skynyrd's opening slot on The Who's U.S. tour helped introduce the band to a wider base of fans than just those in its hometown of Jacksonville, Fla.. Nothing is as rock and roll as dying in a plane crash - it's a way more respectable way to die than overdosing (just ask Buddy Holly and Otis Redding) - but too many of Skynyrd's fans are Rebel flag-toting, tallboy-swilling rednecks. Sorry, the Who wins this one.

Score: Mods 2, Rockers 0

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