Billy Idol - that sneering, leather-clad punker with his trademark shock of carefully unkempt blond hair - will perform at the Huntsman Special Events Center Wednesday, Oct. 17.
Idol was the driving force behind Generation X, one of the early British punk bands that dethroned, or at least humbled, many of the lethargic rock superstars of the late 1970s.Although probably not the most influential, nor the most outrageous of the early punks (remember: Johnny Rotten and Sid Vicious were his contemporaries), Idol nonetheless managed to parlay the punk anger and minimalism into a success that escaped many of his peers.
Has success spoiled Billy Idol? When the rebel joins the establishment, can he still sing sincerely of rebellion?
Those contradictions were not lost on Idol. After the birth of his son in 1988, Idol began to reflect on his values.
"I'd just gotten a bit lost," Idol said. "I'd become the type of rock star I used to rebel against - a limousine out front of my apartment, a bodyguard, no friends. I could only see this after I left New York. When I moved to Los Angeles, I started driving my motorcycle again, living in at home, eating my own food. It was only with the birth of my son that I had a reversal and found a reason to love."
Idol sees his relocation and his association with new guitarist Mark Younger-Smith, along with his involvement with "The Doors" movie as a virtual rebirth.
"In the past, I've been unwilling to show all of my personality. I've wanted to sing about hurt rather than love. I'm not like that all the time anymore."
He believes his new album, "Charmed Life," embodies that new attitude. The album - aptly titled in light of Idol's serious motorcycle accident that left his right leg broken in three places - has been hailed by critics and scooped up by fans from coast to coast.
Faith No More, an up-and-coming band that manages to walk the perilous tightrope between punk and heavy metal, will open the show. - Brett Del Porto