CLASSIC BEARDS OF THE DECADE
Sam Beam's beard AKA "The Intellectual"Sure, he may have been a college professor before embarking on a career in beard-folk. But I imagine Sam Beam's teaching style as similar to that of Donald Sutherland in Animal House, or Gruber in Freaks and Geeks. Does this look like a man who's organized a campus protest or two? Of course he has. While audience requests between songs are a concert staple, I once witnessed first hand a concert-goer yell out "What are you reading?" to Beam, proving that beards can serve as nerd magnets.
Fleet Foxes beards AKA"The hirsute harmonies"
Let's face facts, at this point, the question on everyone's (AKA "my") mind is this. What is the deal with the clean-shaven Fleet Fox? Is he not allowed to grow a beard? It seems as if he's the only one not allowed to sing, so perhaps it's a package deal, but either way, I haven't been this interested in someone's facial growth since I was a child, baffled over the "other guy" in ZZ Top.
Devendra Banhart's beard AKA "The patchouli shampoo"
He helps kid develop their coloring skills, and somehow looks even creepier when he's clean shaven. His beard and musical output have followed similar trajectories, peaking in terms of quality in the middle of the decade, and gradually impressing less with each year since.
Kyp Malone's beard AKA "Beard Science"
Stephen Colbert has made no secret of his tenacious drive to ask the hard-hitting questions. But no question delighted me more than when he interviewed TV on the Radio and asked if he could stroke Kyp Malone's beard. When given the go ahead, Colbert declared the experience to be "like a vacation in a far away forest." A forest packed with werewolves, I'm guessing.
Jookabox beards AKA "The shirtless wonders"This Asthmatic Kitty write-up of the new Jookabox album is outstanding. I had no idea, but it seems "the east side of Indianapolis in the 90s, [was] an area plagued by constant recession, pandemic homicide, and racial tension. A few strong tribes chose to stay in the area despite constant warnings from fleeing acquaintances." Holy shit! To think that I spent my childhood going to the Roller Cave without ever declaring my allegiance to 2-1 or the Hellraisers! I'm luckily to be alive.
When I was in high school, I remember N.A.P. making similar claims about the war zone of 21st and Post. I was highly skeptical at the time, but in hindsight perhaps I owe them an apology. Could it be that niggas truly weren't playin'?
(In all honesty, whoever is doing P.R. for Asthmatic Kitty deserves a raise.)
Will Oldham's beard AKA "Bonnie 'Prince' Beardy"Is it the beard that makes his face look so bizarre? Or is it the other way around?
Mark Everett's beard AKA "B"
EELS - "That Look You Give That Guy"
What a letdown. You spend all day getting every detail of your beard, and the night in general, perfect. You avoid a potential milk mishap while Padma is enchanted with your globe and collection of leather-bound books. Just when things are at their peak, your damn dog throws on a tux and a top hat, and suddenly the dream with Padma comes crashing down right before your eyes. We've all been there, but that doesn't make it any easier. Learn the code, dog!
Dan Auerbach's beard AKA "The hockey playoffs"
It's hard to believe, but this photo is NOT a mug shot.
Doug Martsch's beard AKA "The elder statesmen"
He's the unstoppable force. Year after year Built to Spill force people who hate jam bands to ask themselves, "Are these guys a jam band?" The albums say "No!" but the beard says "Of course! What kind a stupid question is that! Are you even seeing this beard!" The live show comes down somewhere in the middle.
?uestlove's beard AKA "The second fiddle"It's the most underrated beard in music, due primarily to the attention-grabbing due on top of his head. If his afro is Kid A, then the beard is Amnesiac, lost in the shuffle of what precedes it, but a classic when judged on it's own merits.
But I'm primarily putting this photo up to ask a crucial question. What is the deal with Japanese kids and their widespread obsession with the peace sign? Is there a logical reason behind it? Is it some type of motor-skill developed through mind control of all Japanese infants? I mean look at these kids! Perhaps Ross MacLochness can offer an explanation from his time in the Orient. Needless to say, all those peace signs make me think there's some sort of plotting going on.