Big news of the morning was poor pathetic Mark Kozelek trying to convert his recent history of ill-tempered outbursts into some kind of musical/cultural moment. His brand new topical song includes lyrics referring to a writer friend of mine as “some spoiled bitch rich kid blogger brat,” which is pretty impressive considering that she’s only been writing about music professionally for a few years now.
Back in the day I was referred to obliquely in a song or two:
The only response as a critic to stuff like that is … well, I’m still not sure. Is it better or worse to believe that it’s all part of some theatrical performance (which it clearly is – whatever fit of pique inspires a song like that can’t persist as pure emotion through the writing, arranging, recording, etc, etc) which the critic is necessarily complicit in? Are we all winking at each other?
At the time I either took everything totally seriously, or I was just stringing words together in sequences that I found pleasing. I’m not sure I know which it was anymore. And I’m not sure it mattered – I had plenty of people tell me that they read my stuff & never listened to the records or saw the movies I wrote about.
But at a certain point I started to feel like I was occasionally going out of my way to find something provocative to say (and then shortly thereafter I felt like my editors were pushing me in that direction), and not long after that I just stopped writing. Focused my efforts on radio & on generally mostly neutral or intermittently effusive show listings on trianglerock.com.
I still get people pissed at me but it has been ages since someone wrote a song in my direction.
Anyway. One of my interns last summer was a big Ben Folds fan so for the first & probably only time I actually was able to use that song to my advantage.
The new Deaf Wish single came out today. It’s worth a listen or four.
Oh! I meant to loop back to the question of people talking during quiet shows, which is [sort of] how the whole Kozelek thing started. Since he’s too hateful to really get behind at this point, how about you go read this blog post by Circuit Des Yeux instead?
After work we went to see Tig Notaro at the Carolina Theatre. It feels so good to laugh. It feels better to laugh when none of the jokes are mean-spirited or at some smaller/weaker person’s expense. Really. Tig’s shows are like a master class in how not to be an asshole comedian.