Arts & Entertainment

Lost in Mulletville

The Internet has proved to be a fertile research source for those interested in outdated rock ‘n’ roll hairstyles. Case in point: the various Web sites devoted to the mullet, the short-on-top, long-in-the-back fashion faux pas made famous through the various stylistic offenses of musicians now relegated to the “classic rock” category (see or for starters).

One so easily forgets that Sacramento was once a fertile breeding ground for those who would one day mullet. Take Steve Perry, who lived in Sacramento in the early 1970s before moving to Los Angeles, forming the ill-fated Alien Project and later joining that evil beast of all classic rock bands: Journey. Or, take Night Ranger guitarist and Sacramento native Jeff Watson, who wasn’t really a mullet wearer per se but sported a headbanger’s hairstyle that was, nonetheless, stylistically egregious. Sister Christian would be equally proud of the metal hairstylings of George Lynch, a Sacramento-area native who was the guitarist in Dokken before starting his own band, Lynch Mob. And we can’t forget Craig Chaquico, who is famous for being born and raised in Sacramento and for sporting a beautiful mullet. He’s also known (after the Sacramento and mullet connection) for being an integral member of Jefferson Starship (and later Starship) since he was 16 and for building this city on rock ’n’ roll before moving on to smooth jazz, the genre where mullets go when they cannot rock anymore.

Also from the classic-rock era, albeit its non-spandex-wearing division, is Timothy B. Schmit, sometimes mullet-sporting and other times doing the long-all-over rock-star ’do. (In fact, while his fellow Eagles have gotten “we’re old and vote” hairstyles, Schmit’s hair still looks decidedly rock ’n’ roll. Good for him. I wonder what his old bandmates in the New Breed/Glad and Poco look like these days.) And last, but certainly not least, the maximum mulleted of them all are Sacramento’s metalhead darlings: the boys in Tesla.

Why has such a relatively small geographic area spawned so many classic mulleted buttrockers? Ask the next guy you see in a pickup with a pissing-Calvin sticker in the back window. He’s bound to have an answer.