Will the Next Album Feature Tiny Violins?

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Reader Ari Spanier forwards a link to this story in London's Evening Standard, in which Coldplay's Chris Martin aspires to prove that he can be a second-rate Radiohead knock-off in the political arena too. Sez the bojillionaire musician:

I think shareholders are the great evil of this modern world….It's very strange for us that we spent 18 months in the studio just trying to make songs that make us feel a certain way and then suddenly become part of this corporate machine.

Martin also bemoaned "the slavery that we are all under to shareholders," presumably before hopping the limo back to his hotel suite. Maybe we can get a rousing "Let My People Go" for the encore.

Brian Doherty wrote about "the strange politics of millionaire rock stars" back in 2000.

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  1. I can understand his gripe with some elements of corporate hierarchy and their interference in the artistic process, but shareholders? That’s a stretch.

    Besides, if his goal was making songs for artistic merit, why sign a contract for money?

  2. I say let him run his mouth about whatever he wants: his awful wife has saggy tits.

    The joke’s on him.

  3. Love the hypocrisy of issue oriented rock stars. I was at the mall yesterday and saw that System of a Down, the reigning kings of anti-globalization prog-nu-metal, are doing a promotion with that temple of third world labor and mainstream dissent, Hot Topic.

  4. Peep this:

    Tom Morello of Audioslave fame (RATM fame, too) and Serj Tankian of System of a Down fame have formed an organization called “The Axis of Justice.”

    http://www.axisofjustice.org

    Honestly, their opinions read like an Onion article. I highly recommend it.

  5. This is why musicians and actors should just read from the script, and not try to think on their own.

  6. Long live Fugazi. I have no problem with self-righteous rock musicians as long as they actually live what they preach. Fugazi is one of the very few bands you cannot accuse of being hypocrites – they make poseurs like Coldplay, Radiohead and other left-wing whiners look that much worse.

  7. “Besides, if his goal was making songs for artistic merit, why sign a contract for money? ”

    Ching ching ching! We have a winner. I’m sure he’d be able to enjoy more creative leeway–and a much, much smaller check–at, say, Matador.

  8. “It’s very strange for us that we spent 18 months in the studio just trying to make songs that make us feel a certain way and then suddenly become part of this corporate machine.”

    Gee, how did that happen? I make music any which way I want all the time without any corporate interference.

    He has an interesting definition of the word slavery,too. I never knew a slave could have the option to be one or not. How does that work?

  9. He bitched about his boss leaning on him, but didn’t actually quit his job. Oh, the hypocritical horror! Nobody ever does that.

  10. Long live Fugazi.

    A-f’in-men. I may not agree with them all the time, but atleast they’re consistent. (atleast, by rock’n’roll standards!)

  11. What “suddenly”? Who does Chris Martin think was bankrolling that studio he and bandmates spent 18 months in?

  12. “He bitched about his boss leaning on him, but didn’t actually quit his job. Oh, the hypocritical horror!”

    “His boss”? He signed a mutual contract with someone, in which he agreed to do X if they did Y. How does he have a “boss”?

  13. I always thought Rage Against the Machine were being ironic with the band name. They’re the fuel that runs the machine.

    “Rage against us, man!”

  14. “Nobody ever does that.”

    Oh, people do, and those people are annoying. Joe, if undue harshness and criticism frustrates you so, try not defending people who speak like this:

    “I think shareholders are the great evil of this modern world”

  15. They’re the fuel that runs the machine.

    Hell, their label was run by SONY!! They were employed by the machine! They weren’t ironic, they were self-loathing!

    Or really really retarded.

  16. i remember watching footage of RATM in concert; thousands of kids yelling back “fuck you i won’t do what you tell me” in unison.

    it really bothered me at the time. it’s funny now, but at the time…ugh.

  17. I wonder if the record exec cringe or giggle when one of their multi-millionaire properties goes off and says such stupid things.

    I bet they giggle.

  18. I love how the hard-core leftist book lists always have a couple of oddball choices… something like “Leaves of Grass” sandwiched between “I Rigoberta Menchu” and “The Marx-Engels Reader”

  19. I know I’m probably young for around here (31), but it makes me feel old to know that I was excited when Fugazi’s “Repeater” came out. I also saw RATM right after their first album came out (in Austin, with Quicksand, a highly underrated band at the time) and am proud to say that in solidarity with the oppressed I kicked some serious tushy in the pit.

    And in solidarity with you, I hit the ff button on Windows Media Player so that instead of Radiohead on the ‘phones, I am listening to 18 visions.

  20. thousands of kids yelling back “fuck you i won’t do what you tell me” in unison.

    Welcome to the modern world of Angry Youth! Where all you have to do to be a non-conformist is do exactly what the other non-comformists tell you! Oh, and shop at Hot Topic*.

    *said the ironic Ranger as he looked at his Hot Topic “The OC”-style wrist cuff… 😉

  21. i remember watching footage of RATM in concert; thousands of kids yelling back “fuck you i won’t do what you tell me” in unison.

    That was the most violent part of the show — ironic in some way that I’m too preoccupied to think about right now.

  22. One of the many things that is funny is that the best way to end corporate music is through file sharing. If everyone can get their music for free, then the evil shareholders and music execs can’t make any money selling overpriced records. Free music for the people. That sounds like a slogan any good leftist musician could embrace. Of course they don’t. Afterall, if music fans don’t overpay for music to support record execs expense accounts and coke habits, the art might suffer.

    Interesting that mankind had music for thousands of years before the advent of recorded music and millionaire international musicians and the art seemed to do just fine. In fact, in what could best be described as the golden age of the musical arts, people like Beethoven, Mozart, Lizt, Chopan, Bach and the like seemed to crank a whole lot of music despite not having access to royalties and residuals and having to depend on rich patrons for a living. Since when is it written in stone that because you are a great musician you are entitled to be fabulously wealthy? Lots of other talented people, like painters, wood carvers, dancers, are not wealthy, why should pop musicians be any different? Its only because of the evil shareholders and the corporate marketing and distribution system that allows third rate clowns like Coldplay to be where they are. But they are just slaves to the corporate edifice. What a looser.

    And also, his wife is a pasty faced homely white chick and is poor daughter has a retarded name.

  23. Last year, one of the production houses I occasionally freelance with looked at using ColdPlay’s song “Clocks” for a regional television spot.

    Wanna know how much they charge to use that song for 8 months in a piddly regional area of the USA?

    $80,000

    Yes.

    $80,000 to use thirty seconds of a song.

    Fuck you, Chris Martin.

  24. Amazing that two of the most horrifyingly overrated bands in recent memory (Radiohead and Coldplay) and one perhaps not overrated but just awful anyway (Rage Against the Machine) make it into a single post! Does anyone remember, I think it was Coldplay, that was selling some sort of “native” piece of wood in a tube for some lefty cause, either last Christmas or maybe the year before? I was fairly speechless when I saw it at Virgin Records, you’d think I’d remember something that odd.

  25. I’m agreeing with joe here (shudder).

    Sure Coldplay is lame-rock, and sure his economic sense leavesa lot to be desired, but EMI basically laid a guilt-trip on him.

  26. I love all the uncalled-for personal attacks on his family. I’m not being sarcastic either — you guys are hilarious. Keep up the good work.

  27. Besides, if his goal was making songs for artistic merit, why sign a contract for money?

    Ching ching ching! We have a winner. I’m sure he’d be able to enjoy more creative leeway–and a much, much smaller check–at, say, Matador.

    Spot on, Julian and David. There are thousands of bands which choose an alternative (read: not ruled by a big-name record label) means of making and distributing their music. This sucker is just a whiny poster boy for most misguided youth (and young adults, sadly) that don’t understand the first thing about capitalism — or creativity, for that matter. I have seen countless leftist/hippie peers denounce capitalism on a daily basis, and then at the same time, turn around and utilize it to make a living. John’s right, too: If they actually hated capitalism so much, lefties would all file share their bands’ files for free; however, that is not the case. It is always presumed, even in the smallest scenes, that you will “support local music” – i.e. pay for recordings and for concerts out of one’s own pockets – so that aspiring musicians can eat.
    So, I completely agree with supporting small musicians, but I really wish they’d at least stop trashing capitalism when they rely on it so heavily, like anyone else trying to make a living. How hypocritical.

    Don’t even get me started on Rage, Audioslave, or most of all, System of A Down. Whiny fucks. What sucks extra bad is that I didn’t mind their music (I typically ignore political lyrics in music whenever possible — unless an artist’s music is defined by them, e.g. Bob Dylan, in which case I won’t even listen to them), until they opened their dumb activist mouths and ruined it for me. Just shut up and play yer tunes. Leave the political commentary to bloggers like us.

  28. Speaking of Hot Topic…

    Goth Kid: I’m so non-conformist, I’m not conforming with you guys. I’m in.
    Stan: Great.
    Goth Girl: Wow, he put us in our place.
    Other Goth Kid: Yeah, we just got goth-served.

  29. Ching ching ching! We have a winner.

    And on the first post too!

  30. Mediageek,

    80K, that is amazing. What a greedy bastard.

  31. EMI basically laid a guilt-trip on him.

    Maybe b/c it appeared that nothing was getting done?

    When EMI has paid the band for an album -payment which provides the band the freedom and stage to lament the plight of their being told to actually do that for which they’re being paid- it seems in their best interest to make sure they get the album.

  32. mediageek wrote:

    $80,000 to use thirty seconds of a song.

    Fuck you, Chris Martin

    but wait! it’s those evil shareholders charging that, not him! If it were just up to Chris you wouldn’t have had to pay a penny over $ 75,000

    (oh, and naturally you’ll be throwing in the incidentals for his visit to town to sign the deal; you know, the limo, 5-star hotel, 200 cases of Evian water, with each bottle flavored with precisely .005 oz. of juice from preserved organically grown lemons from pre-communist Tibet, and 10,000 pillow mints personally autographed by Pablo Picasso).

  33. On the topic of fashion in music and nonconformity: it’s an inescapable problem, fashion. Even “nonconformists” all expect people on their scene to look “individual”. Laa-aame.

    Incidentally, I accidentally happened to wear a white sweater to see Peter Murphy in concert last night. I didn’t notice until I arrived there, surrounded by a sea of gothic black. Boy, did I stick out like a sore thumb.

  34. 10,000 pillow mints personally autographed by Pablo Picasso

    Lol! And a single plum, floating in vinegar, served in a man’s hat.

  35. “Incidentally, I accidentally happened to wear a white sweater to see Peter Murphy in concert last night.”

    you are now officially my hero.

  36. I can understand his gripe with some elements of corporate hierarchy and their interference in the artistic process, but shareholders? That’s a stretch.

    Actually, if there’s part of the corporate machine to loathe, they are probably it. They are the most removed from the day-to-day operations and most disconnected from the product. Yet, because of the way the system works, they are the ones who must be pleased by the output of the machine.

    And as for $80,000 for the rights to the song? I’m sure part of Chris Martin’s deal with Sony or whoever is that he doesn’t own the rights to the songs. He may have entered into that aggreement willingly, but to blame him for the outrageous fee is like blaming the kid behind the counter for how much the hamburger costs.

  37. Maybe b/c it appeared that nothing was getting done?

    Yes, but does that mean they have to call them out in an earnings release? Sheesh, I’d be pissed too if my company released a statement saying “Earnings were down because Russ took longer to write the software than we expected.” If I was that important that they’d guilt me into delivering faster, I’d be in a position to take even longer and ask for even more money.

  38. “Incidentally, I accidentally happened to wear a white sweater to see Peter Murphy in concert last night.”

    Did he sing “Bella Lugosi’s Dead” hanging upside down from the rafters?

  39. Has anyone actually read the liner notes in System of a Down’s first album?

    They made ME want to eat a spotted owl.

  40. Geez, I almost hate to admit that I liked (and still do like) RATM. Their politics is crap, but I liked the music. Besides, their bassist (I believe) had an “Arm the Homeless” sticker on his guitar. So they’re pro-2nd Amendment at least. 🙂

    Now he has some lame-ass “Soulpower” or something similarly cheesy. Sure they were fake anti-capitalists, but they could rock.

  41. $80,000 to use thirty seconds of a song.

    This could be an urban leend, but back at the launch of Windows 95, the Rolling Stones quoted Microsoft a ridculously high price for “Start Me Up” just so they’d go away, and were shocked when Microsoft said “Okay!”.

  42. I never heard of “System of a Down” until they were on SNL last week (?). Man, they suck. “Nu-metal” needs to die a quick death.

  43. Welcome to the Dark Side, joe.

  44. Incidentally, I accidentally happened to wear a white sweater to see Peter Murphy in concert last night. I didn’t notice until I arrived there, surrounded by a sea of gothic black. Boy, did I stick out like a sore thumb.

    Did anyone call you conformist?

  45. Mike,

    Without the shareholders there is no investment, and no investment means no company. They are easy enough to please, just turn a profit.

  46. The shareholders act in their own self-interests, and Chris Martin acts in his. I thought that was the beauty of the free market.

  47. Did he sing “Bella Lugosi’s Dead” hanging upside down from the rafters?

    I wish! That would’ve been sweet. No, I don’t believe he does Bauhaus material at his solo shows.

    dhex – the white sweater was an accident. attribute it to my obliviousness. but if you want me as your hero, I say more power to you, I guess. (Hopefully this means I will get lots of stuff from you for free. As a goodwill offering. To your hero.)

    Mo — No, thankfully nobody spoke to me. That was a show I went to specifically to be by myself.

    Re: nu-metal: Color me tired of it.

  48. Tankian of System of a Down fame have formed an organization called “The Axis of Justice.”

    There’s an old joke from the Cold War: an American and a Russian are arguing about who has the better system.
    “In America we have freedom of speech,” says the American. “You can stand on any street corner and ridicule the President Of The United States.”
    “Big deal,” shruggs the Russian. “We can do the same thing. Any Russian can stand on any street corner in broad daylight and ridicule the President Of The United States…”

    So…I go to the Axis Of Justice website, and some guy is crowing about the Audioslave concert and how all those courageous, outspoken Cubans were waving flags and signs challenging “imperialism,” and “fascism”…

    Guess the joke is on them…

  49. Ani DiFranco comes to mind as a lefty musician who formed her own company and acquired a cult following without having to kowtow to “the Man”.

  50. regulator:
    Well, then this’ll make you feel REALLY old: I was eleven when “Repeater” came out.

  51. $80,000 to use thirty seconds of a song.

    Sounds reasonable is your goal is to keep advertisers from degrading your music. The proper response, of course, would have been “Fuck you, we don’t write jingles.”

    As for Coldplay and the silly drivel- I have a hard time getting upset over stupid comments made by crappy musicians.

  52. The first line should be in italics, and that should read “Sounds reasonable IF your goal..”

    Sorry about that.

  53. SP–

    The “boss-employee” relationship is just a subset of what you describe. Prototypically, it involves a long-term contract wherein money is exchanged for labor, with a one-to-many structure between money provider and labor providers. It’s thereby opposed semantically to the generally shorter-term or many-to-one (“client”) relationship, and to the money-for-goods-or-services and many-to-one (“customer”) relationship. When a full-time recording artist is in a long-term contract with a single production company that also contracts many other artists, I would personally judge that to be a pretty good example of the “boss” relationship. Of course, anyone’s mileage may vary.

  54. Geez, I almost hate to admit that I liked (and still do like) RATM. Their politics is crap, but I liked the music.

    Same here. And I feel the same way about Midnight Oil and Moby and a ton of others. If I insisted that my favorite music-makers all had to agree with my politics, I’d have a very tiny CD collection indeed.

  55. If there is a bigger bunch of conformist loosers than goths, I would like to know. “No, I just happen dress like, act and think like all of my friends.”

  56. Ditto real bill. I love the RATM sound. Eventually I just couldn’t deal with the hypocrisy and nihilism of guys like that screaming against, well, almost everything that matters.

  57. Jeez, over 30 posts since I started that reply. This is what SP said:

    “His boss”? He signed a mutual contract with someone, in which he agreed to do X if they did Y. How does he have a “boss”?

  58. Tangential to the topic, but a while back I once pondered the question, “Who makes up the ‘aristocracy’ in America today, in terms of attitude and outlook?” I decided the American aristrocracy consists of:

    – Politicians
    – Clergy
    – Academics
    – Actors (and other Hollywood creative types)
    – Musicians with money and fame
    – Ditto writers and other artists and entertainers of various sorts

    What they all have in common: They all either (1) are insulated from the effects of market forces, or (2) are forced to cater to market forces but are in denial about it, or (3) know they must at least partially cater to market forces in order to keep making money, but resent the fact bitterly.

  59. Same here. And I feel the same way about Midnight Oil and Moby and a ton of others. If I insisted that my favorite music-makers all had to agree with my politics, I’d have a very tiny CD collection indeed.

    Well, I agree with that sentiment to a certain extent. I’m not going to totally blacklist anyone if I think their music is good, even if their politics are crap. BUT , if their whiny political shenanigans continue for what is deemed too long by my judgement, then I can’t help but put them in the “dirty secret” category of bands I like — so consequently, they lose my full support as a fan and will henceforth probably not see much of my money from that point on. My point is this: Generally , I think it’s definately not in many musicians’ best interests to overtly politicize themselves. It only serves to ostracize them from their public. Or piss would-be fans off. Of course, they’re free to choose for themselves.

    I would compare my reaction to overly-political musicians to that of a parent and her children: If I am the parent and the children continue to willfully annoy me, at some point I will send them to their room without supper.

  60. Agreed Mo. I found RATM’s politics pretty much laughable, but they made some damn fine music: lean and tightly wound. I wish I could say the same for Audioslave, but they sound like a Soundgarden cover band. Out went the razor sharp bite, in came the 5th generation Led Zepplin sludge.

    As for SOAD, old Noel from Oasis summed it up the best:

    After I heard System of a Down, I thought, I’m actually alive to hear the shittiest band ever. Of all the bands that have gone before and all the bands that’ll be in the future, I was around when the worst was around.

  61. I pay about zero attention to lyrics myself (I love Midnight Oil, The Clash, The Alarm…). My disdain for bands like Rage Against The Machine and Coldplay is based purely on their music.

    If there is a bigger bunch of conformist loosers than goths, I would like to know.

    I don’t think it’s “conformity” so much as “self-advertisement”, i.e. “Hey I’m into this cool music, are you too?” I hung around with a LOT of goths in college and for the most part they were normal people who liked to express their taste in music with a certain look. That’s hardly unique. Go to almost ANY concert and you’ll see that everyone looks very similar.

  62. 80K, that is amazing. What a greedy bastard.

    I don’t have a problem with them charging $80K for rights to use a song. That’s certain their right, and given the popularity of Clocks, wholly understandable. But fuck him for the obviously rampant hypocrisy.

    I’m sure part of Chris Martin’s deal with Sony or whoever is that he doesn’t own the rights to the songs. He may have entered into that aggreement willingly, but to blame him for the outrageous fee is like blaming the kid behind the counter for how much the hamburger costs.

    I’m certainly not stupid enough to believe that Chris Martin dreamed up that figure all on his own. But I’d be willing to bet there was a meeting at some point when a suit told him “Hey, we can get $80K for the rights to use this song, and you’ll get a percentage of that.” Do you honestly think that Chris Martin was all concerned about economic equality then, or do you think he saw just another way to earn a little more jingle?

    To put it another way, if he had really wanted to, I’m sure he could have either opted to not sign the contract, or force the record label to give the rights away for free.

    Sounds reasonable is your goal is to keep advertisers from degrading your music. The proper response, of course, would have been “Fuck you, we don’t write jingles.”
    Number6- Yeah, except for the fact that Clocks turned up in every single movie trailer, ringtone, and television ad for about six months straight.

    Again, I don’t find it loathesome that they charge an exorbitant rate to use a song. That is their right, and people will pay what the market will bear. What I dislike is such fundamentally arrogant hypocrisy from people who should know better. If you hate the free market so much, then screw you, go rent a futon from a friend and perform on the street for pocket change.

  63. By the way, I do think creative artists who want to get rich and/or express a message to the public have been in a bad way for a while. Specifically I’m thinking of creative Hollywood types, musicicans and novelists, etc. The problem is that for decades, it has taken a lot of money to get a movie made, or a record distributed, or a novel published and marketed.

    So you have to go get the support of the guys who have lots of money to spend on you. Problem is, the big-money guys tend to be few in number. And they don’t want to throw their money away. So they tend to make demands of (interfere with) the artists they bankroll, intended to maximize the financial success of the project and their eventual returns. Plus, the big-money guys tend to be conservative, as in leery of taking big risks, which stifles innovation.

    The problem is, I don’t think the big-money guys are especially good at predicting what the public will like:

    “With bankable big stars like Warren Beatty and Dustin Hoffman, it can’t lose! Let’s make this Ishtar!

    “Who could be hotter right now than Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck? Greenlight Gigli!

    “Buncha bookworm musicians who keep singing about some ‘Ann Rand’ chick? That’s not rock ‘n’ roll. Nobody’s gonna buy their albums. Unless maybe they try to sound more like Led Zeppelin.”

    “He wants to make a cheesy sci-fi movie about rebellious space-farmers? Pass! Anyone heard of this George Lucas guy? What else has he made? No, art films don’t count. American Grafiti? OK, that was good. Have him change the script so it’s about teenagers and cars and then we’ll talk. I have this idea, Corvette Summer …”

    But I think this is changing. It’s getting to the point where people can make movies and music with high production values in their bedrooms, and publish novels on the Internet. What’s still lacking is a way for them to make money without a free-rider problem. But I think that’ll come, and the bankers will soon no longer have a role as cultural filters.

  64. Oh, and regarding System of a Down, I just have one question regarding their new single BYOB

    What

    The

    Hell

    Is

    That?

  65. I gotcha, Smacky. I do kind of make a point of ignoring and avoiding everything political that musicians say (interviews and what not) if it isn’t part of a song. Why should I care what Bono thinks about geopolitics? (Although I think he is getting to the point where he needs a good punch in the groin.)

  66. As an addendum: I think tiny violins would be fitting, since I bet they would be really whiny and annoying, too. Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

  67. I just wanted to be the 69th comment. Huh huh.

  68. SPD: Who does Chris Martin think was bankrolling that studio he and bandmates spent 18 months in?
    If Coldplay’s recording contract is anything like the industry norm, Chris Martin and bandmates paid the recording costs themselves, out of an advance from the record company, which they’ll have to pay back before they see any royalties from the album.
    And even though the band paid for it, the record company owns the master tape of the album and can do whatever they want with it.
    Sound fucked up? Maybe that’s why he’s pissed off at the “corporate machine.”

  69. So it’s kind of like how a bank lends you money, and you use it to buy a house, but even though you live there, if you don’t make your house payments the bank can take the house from you?

  70. I’m guessing that he and Gwenyth have a financial advisor investing some of their bojillions. What are the odds than Chris Martin has also become a “great evil of this modern world”?

  71. I absolutely love coldplay’s music. i used to love radiohead for the bends and ok computer and Thom York’s lazy eye. I don’t always think about politics when I listen to an artist’s music.

    EMI will bank on coldplay as much as they can…and coldplay will get what they signed on for. If they don’t like the adoration and millions of dollars they should break contract and get sued, pay for breach, and go back in time to the mid-nineties when they were probably hurting for tube-change.

  72. Go Martin, fuck EMI and the rest of the music industry all the way down to the local club promoter. They use every trick in the book to own you and your work and when you don’t play ball, they breach the contract. Oh, you want to sue for breach of contract? Good luck trying to get on with another label. Why? Because you already proved you won’t play their games and will sue them if they too breach the contract. So now we get all the ditsy “make my sorry, uncreative ass a pop star over night” types who sell out stadiums and file bankruptcy the next year.

    I speak from experience with a certain little label called Island Records and their parent company. I followed the contract, they didn’t, so fuck them.

  73. heh heh, Cold Rant is more like it…

  74. Cold may be ranting, but it’s also true that the music industry has a pretty shoddy record when it comes to treating artists fairly. Remember about a year ago, when one of the major labels claimed it couldn’t pay royalties because it couldn’t find some of its artists? They claimed to be unable to locate Willie fucking Nelson- Jesus, just follow the pot fumes and trail of IRS agents.

  75. ” dhex – the white sweater was an accident. attribute it to my obliviousness. but if you want me as your hero, I say more power to you, I guess. (Hopefully this means I will get lots of stuff from you for free. As a goodwill offering. To your hero.)”

    much like public enemy, most of my heroes don’t appear on no stamps.

    i just like the idea of a white sweater in a sea of blackness.

  76. I’m glad he feels that way. I will feel less guilty when I rip the torrent.

  77. Ani DiFranco comes to mind as a lefty musician who formed her own company and acquired a cult following without having to kowtow to “the Man”.

    From seeing her on the Conan show last week, I’d say she also did it without bothering to learn how to sing or play guitar. Yuck.

  78. …did it without bothering to learn how to sing or play guitar.

    When has that led to failure?

  79. So, does anybody think that Chris Martin doesn’t have a penny of his fortune tied up in stock? Does he keep it all under his bed, or maybe in something safe like GICs or T-Bills?

    Furthermore, how many owners (i.e., shareholders) does a company have to have before they’re evil? One? Two? Is owning a business intrinsically evil? Is doing business intrinsically evil? Will we all burn in hell for buying and selling things, including our labor? Do I need to be living a completely self-sufficient existence in order to comply with Chris’s notions of “goodness”?

    I mean, if I wasn’t allowed to buy a CD player, but had to build my own from what I could forage, I’m pretty sure I couldn’t listen to his enlightened wisdom.

  80. “So now we get all the ditsy “make my sorry, uncreative ass a pop star over night” types who sell out stadiums and file bankruptcy the next year.”

    Because of the record companies, of course, no one is buying that stuff and kids really don’t like to listen to it. Most kids would put on Abou-Khalil instead of Britney Spears if it weren’t for those EEEEEVIIL record execs at Halliburton.

  81. 18 months to record an album? Day-um! By my estimation and cogitation that’s…let’s see…about 558 times longer than it took the Beatles to record their first album. Not that the Fabs are in the same league as Coldplay, of course.

    The most interesting and innovative music being made today is from the truly independent “indies” who maintain tight control over the entire product, including the increasingly important digital distribution rights. If they fuck up, the only “man” to blame is the one in the mirror.

  82. the white sweater was an accident. attribute it to my obliviousness.

    Hey, now, white can be gothic, too y’know…

    Ahem…

  83. Well, then this’ll make you feel REALLY old: I was eleven when “Repeater” came out.

    Bastard!!

    In honor of Fugazi, I’m wearing a suit today, and I look good.

  84. Excess ain’t rebellion.
    You’re drinking what they’re selling.
    Your self-destruction doesn’t hurt them.
    Your chaos won’t convert them.
    They’re so happy to rebuild it.
    You’ll never really kill it.
    Yeah, excess ain’t rebellion.
    You’re drinking what they’re selling.
    Excess ain’t rebellion.
    You’re drinking,
    You’re drinking,
    You’re drinking what they’re selling.

  85. Hey, now, white can be gothic, too y’know…

    Yes.

  86. I don’t think the big-money guys are especially good at predicting what the public will like…

    “Hey, let’s get Eric Roberts’s sister for the role. So what if she can’t act her way out of a paper bag – by the time the promotions department is finished with her, those flyover country morons will think she hung the freakin’ moon.”

    “Johnny Cash? Forget it, man – he’s yesterday’s news. Besides, who can relate to all that stuff about prison and poverty? Get me that Shania chick…”

    “Can that talk host – his ideas are too original, he’s confusing the audience. We need a guy who sounds more like Rush or Hannity.”

    The big money guys may not be any good at predicting. They are, however, excellent at getting the public to eat up crap and think they’re getting filet mingnon…

  87. MMmpfffgglh!!!!!!!!!! Wha?

    (pause)…

    (angrily): This isn’t steak! It’s poop again!!!!

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