I've said it before and I'll say it again: Until the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducts Cheap Trick, it just don't count. Seriously. Few bands have been as influential, and "I Want You To Want Me" still sounds fabulous on the radio even after three decades of saturation-level radio airplay.
Fortunately, Cheap Trick's members seem unfazed by this and continue to soldier on, even playing gigs that seem beneath them (such as opening for Def Leppard and Poison in Raleigh tonight). Then again, not much fazes them by now -- going back to one particularly memorable early-days gig in Wisconsin.
"This Indian guy came in and staggered around," guitarist Rick Nielsen recalled in a recent interview. "We got off for our break, and he was laying on the hood of a car in front of the place -- dead. And he was the only customer, too. We've had kids born at shows, too, out in the audience. Somewhere on the East Coast, these parents who had a kid at our show named it Zander Neilsen Litchfield. For real."
For more of Nielsen's ruminations on the band's four-decade career, see the interview in Friday's paper.