Henry Rollins has praised the “real” Billy Idol during a ceremony that saw the ‘White Wedding’ singer receive a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame – check out footage below.
Idol received the star on Friday (January 6) and said it was “really crazy to find myself getting an award like this, or being honoured in this way”.
The ceremony started with former Black Flag singer Henry Rollins making a speech. “Why are we honouring Billy Idol,” he asked. “It could be because in the late ‘70s and ‘80s in England, there was an explosion of music that is still with us today. With bands like The Clash, The Damned, Sex Pistols, Buzzcocks, Siouxsie And The Banshees and Generation X,” which Idol fronted.
“While a lot of these bands were singing about how things don’t work and how life isn’t so great, Generation X stood out because they wrote songs about being young,” explained Rollins.
“And you can be youngish for a while, but you’re only young for one summer. It’s a lightning strike. If you blink, you miss it. Over three albums and a bunch of singles, Generation X captured that,” Rollins continued. “That music holds up fantastically decades later, so maybe that’s why Billy Idol gets a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame.”
“Or maybe it’s because, as all bands do, Generation X broke up and Billy Idol came to the United States and started releasing one great solo record after another,” said Rollins before praising the “really, really good singles. Maybe that’s why we’re all here today.”
“Billy Idol has rock n’ roll in his veins, and punk rock in his DNA,” Rollins added. “He’s the real thing, and maybe that’s why we’re here today, ’cause decade after decade he has remained himself. And that takes a lot of guts and a lot of integrity.”
Shortly afterwards, Idol took to the stage and said: “47 years after I started in Generation X, and 35 years after coming here, I just really could never have imagined anything like this.”
“Initially, we did the music back in the mid-’70s during the punk-rock time. There wasn’t much hope or anything. We decided if there’s nothing, there’s no future, we’re going to do what we love. And that’s what I did. I did the music because I loved it. It wasn’t for any other reason really.”
He went on to say he thought his career would last “maybe six months, maybe a year, maybe two years. I could never have imagined something like this. It’s just incredible.”
Last year, Billy Idol released new EP ‘The Cage’ ahead of a UK arena tour.
Meanwhile Rollins is set to tour the UK later this year. The talking ‘Good To See You’ tour kicks off on March 24 and runs until April 7. Tickets are available here.