When performers rock, they should be rolling out on stage with the topmost chops. Even if they do or don’t have have slick, clean-cut hair, the fans remember to give praise to the mighty chops of performers which is usually the solo artist or the lead singer within the group. For those that rock with their chops, we salute you!
Here are your top ten most bodacious chop pop culture icons that rocked this planet.
10) Ray Manzarek of The Doors
Ray Manzarek is the quintessential rock and roll keyboardist. As one of the founding members of The Doors, Manzarek never shied away from displaying his long sideburns. It didn’t matter if he was fusing psychedelic rock with blues, Manzarek had some classy chops blending with The Doors lead singer Jim Morrison’s slither-snake moves. I’m sure Ray and his chops are still rocking somewhere in another dimension.
9) Joe Cocker
With his screeching and howling vocals along with his wavy long hair and sideburns at Woodstock ’69, did anybody else dare to trump Joe Cockers’ chops? Why would they since he nailed The Beatles’ With A Little Help From My Friends at the festival which turns out to be one of the greatest cover songs of all time. Cocker had the definitive 60s hippy look and there was no one at the time to tell him he needed any kind of chop cut. Praise be to Joe C!
8) Brian Setzer of Stray Cats
Although he didn’t really sport any sideburns at the beginning of his music career when he performed with The Stray Cats, rockabilly singer Brian Setzer gradually progressed and evolved into the sideburn movement by getting himself a pair of ‘L’ chops for life. Setzer has come to the realization that a true rockabilly performer must have the chops as he rocks out.
7) Jesse Hughes of Eagles of Death Metal
Jesse who? Yes, Jesse Hughes! The lead singer and sideburns extraordinaire of Eagles of Death Metal has been rocking with his chops for quite sometime now. In fact, there’s no proof (as far as I can see) that he ever went anywhere without his sideburns on him. The chops may be permanent fixtures on his face and that’s turning out to be good karma for Hughes. Also known as Boots Electric, Hughes was ordained as a minister by The Universal Life Church World Headquarters in 2012 and is looking to tour (with his chops) in various rock concert halls in 2015 when a new Eagles of Death Metal album is scheduled for a release. Go Jesse go, go!
6) Liam Gallagher of Oasis
The younger Oasis brother has been rarely spotted without any chops and makes you wonder if Liam was born with them. A true John Lennon follower, Liam usually wore his chops right down to the bottom of his ear lobe but is known on occasion to go beyond that point and let his chops grow right down to the bottom of his jaw-line. Bold, dashing and daring; that’s the way Liam Gallagher and his chops have always rolled throughout his whole career. Could Liam and his burns once again make an appearance with Oasis in the future? We’ll have to keep calm and wait for 2015!
5) John Fogerty of Creedence Clearwater Revival
The original and only Creedence Clearwater Revival frontman has always supported his chops. Even though they were longer in his heyday with CCR, Fogerty never abandoned his burns and his burns never abandoned him. From the 60’s and leading into 2015, John Fogerty has consistently weighed on his chops as he continues to rock out his never-ending chart busting rock tunes. Keep up with those chops John. You’re doing great!
4) Bruce Springsteen
When your fans give a nickname like ‘The Boss’ you must comply and sport the proper boss chops. Bruce Springsteen has done this for decades now and no one can blame him for keeping them. He’s one of the greatest performers to ever grace this planet with his on stage persona and antics. Known for regularly playing four-hour concerts, Springsteen, along with the E Street Band, struts, croons and crowd-surfs on occasion. Wherever ‘The Boss’ goes, his chops are always there to guide him along the way.
3) John Lennon
When John Lennon witnessed the birth of Rock ‘n’ Roll by seeing Elvis Presley perform on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1956, he wanted to emulate the same type of presence. He delivered that by having the straight 50’s Presley sideburns by the time he and the other Beatles performed and dominated on The Ed Sullivan Show eight years later in 1964. By the late 60’s, when Lennon wasn’t sporting a beard, he grew chops that were pillar-like form which looked massive on him. Although he trimmed down his burns in the mid-1970s, Lennon still sported that rock ‘n’ roll chop look quite prominently.
2) Neil Young
Although he may be releasing an unscheduled studio album tomorrow, the one thing that has remained consistent throughout Neil Young’s career is his pillar-like chops. From his time in the Buffalo Springfield and onwards to Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young to Crazy Horse (and about a dozen more projects that he got involved with), Young’s long and short chops have remained a true confident in his life since they never abandoned him and he never abandoned them. Even though he’s 69, it doesn’t look like Young, (along with his chops) is settling down anytime soon.
1) Elvis Presley
Could any other performer top The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s chops? There doesn’t seem to be before or even after Elvis Presley’s chops arrived with him when he popularized rock ‘n’ roll. From his 50’s vertically straight cut burns to bringing them back and transitioning them into boot burns in the late 60’s, Presley didn’t have any problems evolving his chop cut. Whether it was from his music, or right down to his chops, that by the time he left us in 1977, Presley grew his sideburns into a blended pillar shaped form. Even though he abandoned his chops when he entered the Army in 1958 and continued that streak for ten years (he was making a bunch of bad movies) until around 1968 when he did his NBC comeback special, Presley knew his chops were an important role for his rock ‘n’ roll stage presence and lifestyle. He never disappointed his fans for the rest of his career. All hail to The King!