Today (May 17), Queens Of The Stone Age’s glorious leader, King Badass himself, the mighty Ginger Elvis, Josh Homme, turns 40. Josh will no doubt be celebrating with a fine barrel of aged tequila, a supersized baggie of psychedelics and a make-shift rifle range set up somewhere on the current promotional run for QOTSA’s eagerly awaited sixth album, ‘…Like Clockwork’. Annoyingly, our invite to the festivities seems to have been lost somewhere in the dusty desert plains, so instead, we’ll celebrate with a blog. Oh alright, and some tequila too. Cheers, Josh - here’s to you and the 10 reasons why you rock.
Full marks to Josh for helming one of the straight-up sexiest songs to ever exist. If this Later… with Jools Holland version of the ‘Desert Sessions’ and ‘Era Vulgaris’ track, complete with PJ Harvey backing vocals, doesn’t have you in a state of permanent priapism then we suggest getting down to the clinic and having your bits looked at, because something’s horribly wrong. Also, note the wicked way he plays the guitar whilst holding his ciggie.
We all know that the reason Al Turner swapped his Fred Perry shirts for leather jackets was because of his Homme-hero worship, but the love goes both ways. Josh recently called Alex one of the most talented songwriters around, telling BBC 6 Music: "If I'd have grown up in Sheffield, I'd have hung out with Alex." They also like to ride their motorbikes together. Cute.
There’s only one person in the world who’s cooler than Josh Homme, and that’s Tom Waits. Queens Of The Stone Age’s cover of ‘Goin’ Out West’, from Tom’s 1992 album ‘Bone Machine’, is unsurprisingly thundering.
Hard as nails he might be, but dude also has a sense of humour, as evidenced by this fake infomercial for the last Scissor Sisters album, ‘Magic Hour’. In it, Josh plays a cue-card confounded CD-shiller, displaying a nifty sense of comic timing. Check out the sweet Cramps patch on the back of his denim cut-off waistcoat.
Josh’s guest spot on Florence Welch’s MTV Unplugged sesssion is the definition of awesome. The striking twosome croon their way through the Nancy & Lee/Johnny & June country classic, as Josh – for some reason dressed as Captain Birdseye – switches his vocals from smooth to belting with a nonchalant flick of a whisker.
This whole episode of sweary chef Anthony Bourdain’s alternative eating, travelling and boozing show No Reservations is genius. In it, Josh acts as Anthony’s guide through his California desert homeland, getting him pissed in outback honky tonks, then getting him hammered at Joshua Tree’s infamous Rancho de la Luna studio and dragging him to the weirdest flea market ever, where one can only assume they’re still drunk due to their bizarre purchases. Decapitated plastic heads, anybody?
Josh is one half of the best rock couple of all time – sorry, late 1980s David Coverdale and Tawny Kitaen, but you just missed out - the other half being the divine Brody Dalle. Former frontwoman of savage Hollywood punks The Distillers, she’s currently working on her first solo album. Set to feature guest spots from The Strokes’ Nick Valensi, Garbage’s Shirley Manson and QOTSA cohorts Michael Shuman and Alain Johannes, frankly, it can’t come soon enough. Take a look at Josh and Brody on a romantic shooting date:
Once heard, the lyrics to QOTSA’s 'Feel Good Hit Of The Summer' are impossible to forget. And just how did Josh come up with that recurring lyrical riff of “Nicotine, valium, vicodin, marijuana, ecstasy and alcohol”? Whilst checking off what was in his system during a three-day bender, that’s how. What a sturdy constitution he must have.
He was in a band with a member of Led Zeppelin. And a member of Nirvana. No biggie. Here they are chatting to Jonathan Ross. Must have been cold in the studio, ‘cos Josh keeps his winter coat on throughout the whole thing.
Well he is, isn’t he?