By Jim Schutze
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It's easy to crack a joke at ol' Rod the Mod's expense. Sure, sadly, the lingering image many casual music fans have of him is of his latter-day, slightly bloated, warbling version. But the man is a legend, a holdout from when frontmen were rock stars instead of disposable pop tarts, when men could dress prettier than their girlfriends but still ooze an air of sexual menace and complete assurance, when they could get absolutely sloppy drunk on a regular basis, sing as though they were crying, and come out of it fine on the other end.
Rod's is the voice that has launched a million soggy pub sing-alongs, a million sessions of sadly staring out the window while Every Picture Tells a Story self-indulgently rotates yet again around the turntable. He's the man who backed up Jeff Beck and gave us dirty rock and roll anthems from The Small Faces and then The Faces. He's the guy who has snagged model after model while seeming to just shrug and grin. Basically, he's the man.
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