Punk rocker turned presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke has won the endorsement of the leader of the venerable British space rock band Hawkwind.
Dave Brock threw his support behind the former Texas congressman after being informed that back in the 1980s, when O’Rourke was in high school, he reportedly used the handle Psychedelic Warlord to post on online message boards.
“The Psychedelic Warlords” just happens to be a song written by Brock from the band's “Hall of the Mountain Grill” album, which came out in 1974 when O’Rourke was two.
“From one Psychedelic Warlord to another, Dave sends Beto his best wishes and hopes he finds Utopia for the American people,” Brock’s spokesperson said in an email from England.
When an NBC News reporter on the campaign trail reached out to O’Rourke for a response, the candidate said he was not familiar with Hawkwind but said he would check out the band’s music on Spotify.
Asked later if he had, O’Rourke gave a thumbs-up.
While “Hall of the Mountain Grill” reached 110 on the U.S. album charts and is considered one of the group’s best studio albums, Hawkwind was a band with more of an underground following.
Hawkwind’s wild live shows, which featured extended jams, pulsating lights, and often a naked dancer named Stacia, became the stuff of legend. And their anarchic style helped spawn the punk rock movement.
The Sex Pistols' Johnny Rotten and Pete Shelley of The Buzzcocks were big fans. And Hawkwind’s gravelly voiced bass player, Lemmy, went on to front the legendary punk-influenced metal band Motorhead.
O’Rourke was also a bass player when he played with a punk rock band called Foss in the 1990s and a couple of other combos before giving it all up for a career in business and, later, politics.
Brock’s song doesn’t exactly sing the praises of O’Rourke’s current calling. The opening lyrics are: “Sick of politicians/Harassment and laws/All we do is get screwed up/By other people’s flaws.”
Hawkwind, which was formed in 1969, is still around and recently staged several performances that featured a full orchestra on a tour called “In Search of Utopia — Infinity and Beyond.”
“We have been in search of Utopia ourselves for some time now,” Brock's wife and Hawkwind manager, Kris Tait, told NBC News.