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Review: Henry Rollins

Henry Rollins goes on stage alone, with just a microphone and a notepad, and takes his audience on a journey through Hollywood, punk rock, politics, his childhood, America, and his travels throughout the world. Along the way he gives out stories both hilarious and tragic, along with sharp reflections on the state of said world - an extended meditation on what it means to be human.

For those who say "Henry who?" - Henry Rollins began his career as singer for punk band Black Flag in the early 1980s. Since then he has developed multiple talents - actor, writer, solo performer, and radio DJ. There was an hour between the time the audience was allowed in and Henry's appearance on stage, which was filled with music. The music, he told us later, was songs he had specially chosen for the occasion.

His film roles are the cause of much hilarity - a major role in Jack Frost, which Henry regards as one of the worst films ever made. He may be right - I have no intention of finding out. He also played a neo-Nazi in Sons of Anarchy. This led some unbalanced  and poorly informed people to believe he really is a Nazi, despite his attempts to explain the concept of acting to them. The excerpts from emails he received showed some seriously disturbed examples of humanity.

Henry is a great traveler - he has been to over 100 countries, and his travel tales are wide ranging and captivating. He talked about wedding parties in central Asia and about a visit to Antarctica, where one of the highlights for the tourists was seeing penguins during their breeding season. The tourists kept pestering the scientists on board the ship - "When are we going to see the penguins?" The scientists were not pleased about seeing the penguins - the reason became obvious when they reached the shore and the overwhelming stench of penguin shit. So much for the joys of nature. 

This was the second Henry Rollins show I have been to. It was every bit as good as the first. He talked for two hours, which didn't feel like two hours. I could have happily listened to him for a good deal longer. 

If you have concluded from this that I am a fan, you are right. I can even forgive him for admiring Obama.