I'm more of a beard lover, but this article isn't about my personal preference. The mustache makes the man and it is no more evident than in rock music, mostly of the '70's.
The 1950's were the start of rock 'n' roll, though it wasn't exactly acceptable until the mid 1960's, thanks to everyones parents saying it was the devils music. Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry were among the first being compared to the anitchrist by everyones mom. It was probably due to the lewd content of songs like "Johnny B. Goode" and "Heartbreak Hotel". Possibly because of Elvis' gyration and weird stroke face; but mostly because of Chuck Berry's satan like mustache.
The devil incarnate.
All hope was lost when the Beatles came along, throwing girls under the age of 20 into a sex crazed frenzy. The parents quickly forgot about how evil Elvis and satanspawn Berry were, there was a new beast in town. Sure when they first came over from England they were just friendly lads with a funny accent, but wait a few years and they would dabble with acid, study the works of Krishna and grow some fucking sweet mustaches.
Before the Beatles stole Sonny Bono's facial fuzz, Bono had a Variety Hour with his wife; the future drag queen, Cher. Many a future porn star, motorcycle gang member and caveman were envious of the small woodland animal that sat perched under Sonny's nose.
The 1970's became the highlight of the musical mustache, everyone who could do so, started growing little patches of hair on their upper lips. After seeing the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin die in 1970, people envied their mustaches and needed to have one of their own.
The decade was a time of plagarism and lies. Those who could get away with stealing someone elses 'tache would do so at any cost. Tony Iommi, along with losing the ends of his fingers while working at a machine shop in the '60's, had his mustache ripped from his face by a crazed Black Sabbath fan. Partially because it was a rare work of art, but mostly because he was angry that Ozzy was replaced by Gollum from Lord of the Rings.
He doesn't look quite right when he's not wearing the loincloth.
Some were frequently copied, John Bonham's face coif was imitated by basically any teenaged Led Zeppelin fan, the occasional friends creepy dad and porn star. Others didn't face the problem of people wanting to grown their mustaches on themselves, such as Lemmy Killmeister. No one decided that they wanted to make the Van Buren more popular unless they were a professional wrestler or a history buff.
Ted Nugent, known for his eccentricities had what some call the motor city mustache. Slightly longer than some of his rocking counterparts and a beautiful blonde color that drove the ladies crazy. A good explanation as to why he wore the loincloth and carried a crossbow. Hes more well known in politics and saying ridiculously crazy things now rather than writing a even semi good song.
Not pictured: Buffalo, American Flag, Daughter/Sex Slave Pelee.
By the end of the decade, it was common to see high schoolers driving brightly colored muscle cars or their parents station wagons. Usually while listening to Lynyrd Skynyrd and mimicking the bands facial har at the same time. Look in a year book from the late '70's, you'll find them. Wait... I'm thinking of Dazed and Confused.
Some of the most epic mustaches of the '80's were the same one, transferred from person to person. John Oates, Bobby Kimball of Toto, Weird Al and Freddy Mercury regularly shared their mustache with each other. Luckily AIDS can't be spread via molestache.
ZZ Top are well known for their beards, though their drummer, Frank Beard has a double mustache. Meaning he has one dead caterpillar on his upper lip and one below his lower.
The mustache belonging to Prince was the only thing convincing parents that he was in fact, not a woman. Being 5 feet tall, wearing heels, makeup and having a very feminine voice typically threw people off. Some were still not completely sure, thinking he had a little smudge of eyeliner a little too far away from his lookers.
Big hair was the mantra for many metal and hard rock bands of the 80's facial hair was not big nor AquaNetted frequently. Out of all the bands I actually attempted to search for I found Kip Winger from the band named after him, had a five 'o clock shadow 'stache. After the song "Seventeen" was released, he became a ballerina (not making this up). You can't have excess body hair when you're performing "The Nutcracker" night after night.
Fun and games are over Kip, put on your tu-tu.
James Hetfield(ah) and Kirk Hammet (a.k.a. half of Metallica) have been sporting mustaches since the late 80's. Lars Ulrich never grew one because he would have to sue his bandmates for copyright infringement.
The 90's grunge movement wasn't exactly known for its facial hair, many of the men from the Seattle area were clean shaven or grew full blown beards. Then there is Chris Cornell, with his shirtlessness, wild stallion mane and pedophilic lip sweater.
Moving into the later part of the decade the nu-metal era facial hair ran rampant in the form of douchebaggy goatees and thin chinstrap beards. The exception is Kid Rock and his sad attempt at a mustache. He modeled his after a 13 year old boy he caught trying to steal his weed.
The mustache was making a comeback by the early 21st century. The fashion industry tends to move in 30 year trends. Once a new decade comes around, the style of 30 years prior returns, for better or worse. Mustaches included.
The earliest of the 21st century (not including the remnants of Kid Rock) would have to be Tim Nordwind of Ok Go. I don't know much about him, except that he likes dogs and has some amazing treadmill dance moves.
J.D. Samson of Le Tigre showed off their fuzz with the debut of the forementioned band. A soft black 'stache for a soft delicate... woman. No one is really sure if it really is a woman, but no one is starting a single file line to find out for sure.
Mike Patton of the recently reunited Faith No More, Tomahawk, Fantomas, Peeping Tom and about 60 other bands has a creepy little mustache that makes him look like a drug dealer. Add in the fact that he usually wears a suit and greases his hair back ala Nick Cave and he could easily be an extra from The Godfather. His mustache is becoming more prominent as he gets older and is slowly becoming the next musician being compared to satan.
I'll be damned if that's not the scariest thing you've ever seen.