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Tuesday, August 19, 2003
Steve Albini does not know who performed "Every Rose Has Its Thorn," which means that I don't like him anymore. Uh, hello Mr. I-cover-Cheap-Trick, it's Poison! Not "Bon Jovi or Guns & Roses. One of those horrible fuckin' bands." WRONG! He's probably just fucking around with us, though.
In other Albini biz, someone posts an interview with him to this thread (scroll about halfway down) in which Steve, besides admirably not telling the reviewer he's an asshat outright, gives a nice little clarification about "selling out":
Q: It gets a little annoying hearing how a band loses all their artistic credibility once they sell a certain number of records.
A: I don't know anyone who genuinely thinks that way. People who are critical of the independent music world postulate that as a strongman argument all the time. I don't know a single person who begrudges a band selling records. Not a single person. I do know that people in the independent world hold it against someone who makes overt changes in themselves and their music and their behaviour in the hope of selling more records… That argument is made all the time by people who are critical of the independent world, saying, "Oh, they're a bunch of elitists and they don't want anyone to sell any records." That's a load of crap. I love it when my friends' bands sell a lot of records. Everyone I know in the independent world is thrilled when their friend's bands sell records. It's not about money, either, because I'm thrilled when a band makes a load of money and they get paid a lot for a gig and they sell a shitbox of records. What people respond negatively to is when bands do things in an overt effort to cheapen themselves so they think they can be acceptable to a dumber audience. That happens all the time, and when bands do that it's transparent and of course people react [negatively] to it. I don't think there's any validity to the notion that the independent world views success with suspicion.
I commend Steve's attitude, even if I don't agree with it particularly. But I would say that "everyone [he] know[s] in the independent world" are musicians or people otherwise in the biz, and not snotty college-age indie fans, among whom the attitude of popular = bad is very much present.