Week In Rock

Jack White is apparently in a horrible mood these days, as he has been lashing out left and right at anyone who attracts his ire. First on his hit list was Billy Childish, who he recently accused of plagiarism on the White Stripes’ official web site. To be fair, the comment was ignited by Childish’s comments on the duo in GQ magazine, where Childish said of the Stripes: "I can’t listen to that stuff. They don’t have a good sound … Jack’s half into the sound and music, but then he wants to be a pop star as well, so you’ve got a big problem." While White could have just ignored the comment since it’s really not true (you can be a pop star doing whatever you want – have you ever heard of the Beatles or Nirvana for that matter?) he instead launched the following, typically bizarre attack. Just imagine it in that warbly, pseudo-old timey voice of Jack’s. "As for Billy Childish, Meg and I really feel sorry for you.” White typed. “It must be lonely sitting in all of that garage rock bitterness Billy. You know children, when you take someone else’s music and put your own lyrics on top of it, it’s still called plagiarism.” Come on, Jack. Don’t talk to me like I’m a little kid. I’m not. You’re so into your – shtick. White also attacked the honorable profession of rock ‘n’ roll journalism. Concerning the treatment of his latest record, this was posted on the Stripes’ web site along with the Childish insults. “What a funny album [Get Behind Me Satan], coming from divided critics to supposed disappointing sales, to going platinum in several countries, to making most critics top 10 lists, to winning a Grammy. That’s funny right?” Yeah, kind of, except I thought that record sucked the first time I heard it too. Haven’t you ever heard of something growing on you, Jack? He continued: “They [critics] all play a coward’s game. [There’s] only one side to their playground. [It’s] such an easy fight that way. The faceless opinion of print and the internet ‘ what is it teaching all of us?” Apparently, Mr. White can’t tell the difference between some Yahoo! posting their uninformed opinion on some blog and the time-honored tradition of helping the great American public decide what records are worthy of spending their hard-earned money on. He also seemed to think anyone can do it too, saying: “Critics are the only public expression that isn’t ‘allowed’ to be critiqued. Be careful children, you don’t have to listen to all those opinions out there, and not even this one you are reading. “Remember the person’s opinion you are reading probably knows less about less about the topic you are interested in than you do.” Hmm, the last time I checked, people sure tell me about it when they don’t like my articles. They even call me a fascist sometimes. However, White’s admission that even his vaunted opinion can be ignored gets him off the hook with me, for the most part. I only wish readers who hate my Week In Rock would do the same.


Although scheduled to be inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame, the Sex Pistols announced that they will boycott their own ceremony. "Next to the Sex Pistols, rock ‘n’ roll and that hall of fame is a piss stain," the band offered journalists via their PR company. While in keeping with their tradition of public offensiveness, urine, boogers and self-mutilation, I have to say that their word doesn’t really carry that much weight with me. Let’s examine the facts, shall we? Fact One: The Sex Pistols were created by a clothing store owning hipster who, upon seeing the Ramones in New York, thought the “punk attitude” could help him sell sweaters and latex bondage gear. Fact Two: The Sex Pistols’ childish, annoying antics were primarily responsible for souring the American market on ‘punk rock.’ Therefore, the Ramones were not able to get radio play and sell the amount of records they deserved, dooming them to a life of touring for a pittance. Fact Three: Sex Pistols songs are basically Ramones songs with different, crappier words. Fact Four: When was the last time you heard about the Sex Pistols actually making music? In view of these facts, it can be clearly established that the outlandish claims by the act that they are, in fact, better than rock ‘n’ roll itself are a bunch of bullshit. Do they really need attention this bad? Did they forget to take their Ritalin or something?