David Wolff - Patrick/Getty Images

Jack White is 42 years old, an age I hope to be one day. Most 42-year-olds listen to shit that came out when they were teenagers or young adults (a recent New York Times story tried to confirm as much), but Jack White isn’t most 42-year-olds. He owns Nashville’s Third Man Records, an indie label/warehouse/store/performance space/novelty emporium/magic factory, which means he should probably have his finger on the pulse of discovering new rock talent more than most. He does not—Jack White said some truly bizarre things about rock and roll on Los Angeles’ KROQ during The Kevin & Bean Show on Monday, and I’ve got a few musical suggestions for him—looks like he really needs them?

White, who’s in the midst of promoting his upcoming album Boarding House Reach, was asked about the dearth of rock bands atop Coachella’s bill this year, and said that he thinks there’s a lack of “wildness” to get people really excited about rock in 2018:

Rock ‘n’ roll needs an injection of some new young blood to really just knock everybody dead right now. I think it’s brewing and brewing and it’s about to happen, and I think that it’s good. Since rock ‘n’ roll’s inception, every 10, 12 years, there’s a breath of fresh air…some sort of what you could I guess call “punk attitude” or something like that, a wildness. Things get crazy and then they’re crazy for a couple years, and then they kind of get subtle. And then you’ve gotta wait for the next wave to come through and get people really excited and screaming about it again. We see it at Third Man all the time, a lot of young rock ’n’ roll acts, and I can tell in the last couple years it’s definitely different than it was five years ago. So I can tell something’s about to explode again.


I kind of get what he means here, at least at the mainstream level—rock’s out of fashion right now, and needs some extraneous boost to get back on the charts or the top of festival bills. This...may happen in 10 years, 20 years, or never at all, and I can’t blame his optimism as a career rock artist to think things can “get crazy” again. That being said, there’s an embarrassment of thrilling young bands out there making rock in 2018, many of whom don’t fit the mold of when White came up in the industry—that’s to say, white dudes leaning on the garage-y bluesman shtick.

Anyway, here’s an injection of “young blood” for White—or 30 bands, in no particular order, who are making some of the most exciting rock music today. Maybe he’ll find some new favorites:

You’re welcome, White!