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Old 09-14-2009, 07:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Top 10 Biggest Geeks in Music

Spinner Magazine's List

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Forget Rock 'n' Roll High School -- we're going to the Rock 'n' Roll Ivy League! These musicians are also pretty big thinkers with a passion for the sophisticated, the eccentric and the downright nerdy. So slap on your pocket protectors, grab your black-framed glasses and celebrate rock's biggest geeks.


10. David Byrne

A skinny man in a big suit with suspect dance moves: Byrne epitomized New York's New Wave scene in the '70s. As the frontman of Talking Heads, Byrne rocked the button-down look better than anyone. His average-white-guy looks only enhanced the caustic wit of songs like 'Burning Down the House' and 'Psycho Killer.' His recent work includes scoring a ballet and making a giant piano out of an abandoned ferry terminal -- really.

Geek IQ: 140



9. Tom Morello

This Harvard grad and political guru is also the renowned guitarist of Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave. Morello's ingenious use of effects pedals, toggle switches and other electronic techniques crafts monster riffs that are both hard rock and hip-hop. His use of his brains and progressive beliefs, though, combined to form a nonprofit organization with Serj Tankian of System of a Down.

Geek IQ: 148


8. Jello Biafra

Once a high school theater club member, Biafra went on to become the lead singer of the iconic punk band Dead Kennedys. He molded his obnoxious persona and politically charged lyrics around his anti-establishment angst, stemming from the gentrification of his hometown of Boulder, Colo. Born Eric Boucher, Biafra stills uses his stage name to give spoken-word performances and spark political protest.

Geek IQ: 155


7. RZA

Your high school chess team could have learned a thing or two from the RZA. The Wu Tang Clan leader is also a chess master who once held the title belt for the Hip-Hop Chess Federation (yes, hip-hop has its own chess federation). He says the game resembles a "battle" and helps kids learn to think before they act. RZA even created a WuChess Web site for fans to master their skills.

Geek IQ: 159


6. Robert Plant


The subject matter of several Led Zeppelin songs shows that the frontman and lyricist kept dog-eared copies of the works of fantasy writer J.R.R. Tolkien alongside his old blues 78s. And it only begins with the fact that 'Misty Mountain Hop,' 'Ramble On' and 'The Battle of Evermore' directly reference 'Lord of the Rings' and 'The Hobbit' -- in 'Bron-Y-Aur Stomp,' Plant reveals that he named his dog Strider, after the 'Rings' character.


Geek IQ: 162


5. Devo

These art school brats became New Wave icons in red flowerpot helmets, and 'Whip It' made them '80s pop stars. Actually, Devo are a conceptual art project railing against the twin menaces of Reaganomics and Rubik's Cube. Their robotic rock and band name (short for "de-evolution") portray humanity as mindless automatons who blindly follow leaders. And if a problem ever came along -- well, you know ...

Geek IQ: 166


4. Dexter Holland

The Offspring's spiky-haired lead singer is just a dissertation away from being Dr. Holland. The high school valedictorian and longtime University of Southern California grad student bailed on his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology to focus on punk rock -- who wouldn't? Holland even has a passion for flying and once took a 10-day solo journey around the world surviving on "Doritos and beef jerky."

Geek IQ: 170


3. They Might Be Giants

Instead of sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll, these brainy Brooklynites sing about shapes, museums and robots. So it was no surprise when TMBG made a full-fledged children's album teaching kids how to cross the street and to tell the truth. The duo's nasally vocals and accordion-led power pop hooks has won them a few Grammys, including one for the bratty theme song 'Boss of Me,' from 'Malcolm in the Middle.'

Geek IQ: 172


2. The Decemberists

You might need to consult a dictionary while listening to the Decemberists. Fronted by literary kingpin Colin Meloy, the band spins tales about marauding pirates and Japanese folklore and even created a concept album about shape-shifting lovers. Meloy cites novelist Vladimir Nabokov as a major influence and has even penned a book about '80s alt-rockers the Replacements.

Geek IQ: 188


1. Weezer

We all know they look just like the Buddy Holly, but Weezer also like to play a little Dungeons and Dragons. They referenced the über-nerd role-playing game in the song 'In the Garage,' making them heroes to pimply teenagers around the globe. As Weezer achieved rock-star status, lead singer Rivers Cuomo enlisted in Harvard and began writing a sci-fi rock opera that has yet to see the light of day.

Geek IQ: 200


Geeks with guitars? Yes, please. This list leaves me a little cold, though. I like most of these guys, but there are definitely some missing (um, hello, Buddy Holly?) Also, no chicks? C'mon, now.


What do you think? Who, if anyone, would you add to this list?
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Old 09-14-2009, 07:59 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Ray Cash. He gangster, but he just looks sort of geekish. Can't really think of anymore off the top of my head.
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Old 09-14-2009, 08:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Trent Reznor. Genuine technology geek... he was even a member of OiNK when it was the premiere music pirating site. In fact, when I saw Nine Inch Nails this may, it was with Tom Morello's new band Street Sweeper Social Club... I guess that concert was a geek-fest!

David Byrne blows all those other people out of the water though. Putting him last pretty much ruins any credibility that list has The guy turns BUILDINGS into instruments!

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Old 09-14-2009, 08:40 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Hell yeah! The first name I thought of was Jello Biafra! I didn't expect him to be on the list though...

I'd add Milo Aukerman to the list...

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Old 09-14-2009, 09:17 PM   #5 (permalink)
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That list makes me sad.
There's only a couple names on there that should be in a top 50, and none of them should be in the top 10. Maybe in the Top 10 of artists that have songs that have been in the Billboard Top Ten...?
typical pop culture masturbation. "oh look we have limited tastes that are diverse!"

and jello biafra is a fucking toad. maybe he was awesome years ago. But if you've ever heard him ramble his drivel in the last 10 years, then you've witnessed one of the most self-congratulatory, ironic douche bags of all time. Who the fuck charges $2,000 to speak for 30 minutes, only to ramble a bullshit speech about hating the system to a crowd of people that are, in all likelihood, doing a lot more to change the system than Biafra himself...? A fucking toad, that's who.
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Old 09-14-2009, 09:40 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm really surprised that Brian May isn't on the list.

Dr. May, for those who don't know, holds a Ph.D in astrophysics. What's more, he actually went back to complete his Ph.D. in 2007. He gave up the rockstar lifestyle to go be.. an astrophysicist.

Really, I don't think it gets much geekier than that.

It also strikes me as odd that they'd put David Byrne on the list, but not Brian Eno.
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Old 09-14-2009, 09:59 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martian View Post
It also strikes me as odd that they'd put David Byrne on the list, but not Brian Eno.
Oooh, another excellent point
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Old 09-14-2009, 11:22 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Carlton, on fresh prince of bel air.
7 Greatest, Most Spastic Carlton Dances | Geek Culture

that counts right? ;p
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Old 09-15-2009, 04:15 AM   #9 (permalink)
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The list says more about the person who created it than it does about the artists. Leaving Eno off a list like this is the most obvious blunder. Of course, they may be thinking only of the most popular names.

And yeah, what about Patti Smith? There's an intellectual rocker chic for you!

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Old 09-15-2009, 04:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Arto Lindsay...geek both in nature and appearance.

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Old 09-15-2009, 02:43 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Kathleen Hanna, Tom Scholz, Mick Jones, all of the Cowboy Junkies, Suzanne Vega, Ben Gibbard, Ben Folds.
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Old 09-15-2009, 05:15 PM   #12 (permalink)
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if weezer are geeks, this is geek squared

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Old 10-07-2009, 07:24 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I gotta add...

Bun E.





and Rick



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Old 10-07-2009, 07:29 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I always thought Rza was a lyrical genius.

now I have proof.
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Old 10-07-2009, 07:51 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Yeah, but have they bitten the head off of a bat?






Uke girl is cute. I'd hit it.
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Old 10-07-2009, 07:54 AM   #16 (permalink)
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ahhh, so Fugly wants to take it from brainiac geeks of rock to carny geeks of rock.

a very different, but just as interesting list.

I offer up........the Igster


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Old 10-07-2009, 12:39 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Jan Akkerman?

Robert Fripp?

Steve Howe?

Edgar Winter?

Rick Wakeman?

David Sylvian?

David Bowie?

What happened to all of these guys?
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Old 10-07-2009, 07:20 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Last I knew, David Bowie was eating Faberge eggs and wiping his ass with Zurich account statements.
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Old 10-07-2009, 11:02 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poppinjay View Post
Last I knew, David Bowie was eating Faberge eggs and wiping his ass with Zurich account statements.
Can you only be a geek if nobody buys it?

What about Tin Machine, what about Berlin? Bowie has done it all in a way that some musicians can only wet dream about!
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Old 10-08-2009, 06:00 AM   #20 (permalink)
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No, just an update on Bowie.

ie: Berlin, gotta love a band that lists the lead singer credits as "vocals, BJs"
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Old 10-08-2009, 06:01 AM   #21 (permalink)
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thridsun sent me this photo of Roxy Music yesterday, 'cause you know, I'm a fan...that's a whole lotta geek, there...

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Old 10-08-2009, 11:25 AM   #22 (permalink)
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if weezer are geeks, this is geek squared
Same artist with friends Amir and Jake from College Humor. Now this is some real geek.

YouTube - jaaaaaaa's Channel
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Old 10-08-2009, 11:37 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Elvis Costello looks like a geek, and what about Joe Jackson...or maybe hes a little too unknown.
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Old 10-08-2009, 04:26 PM   #24 (permalink)
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MC CHRIS!

And yes, I thought Buddy Holly would have been on that list....
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Old 10-08-2009, 04:31 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Neko Case: Civil War geek.
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