I think some people perceive me to be part of a movement or something that I don’t really associate myself with. I think there’s a lot of fakery, a lot of posturing — a handful of kids who just latched on to what they saw as a scene, and set themselves industriously to the synthesis of a particular vibe. I’m pretty insulted when I occasionally get credited in the press for having anything to do with the dissemination of that vibe. I keep to myself. I have friends in my hometown, and a few in other places, but I’m not part of some epic, bracelet-clanking, eyes-rolled-back, blasé, nihilistic scenester cult. I’ve seen some awful displays, let me tell you. I’ve gone to some shows that have left me feeling heartbroken about the state of music. A soulless, mindless, watered-down, image-obsessed, artless stab at John Fahey or Marc Bolan or Karen Dalton or Donovan or Vashti Bunyan is no less lame than Nickelback. There are so many kids who have this energy — you can tell they were into electro-clash five minutes ago, or whatever was big in Williamsburg or Berlin at the time, and now they’ve grown their beards out and they’re doing this thing that they think they understand, but they don’t understand it at all.
I know that’s a bitchy thing to say, but the discussion of this issue requires my being a bitch for a minute. I’m sick of being blamed for bad music. Or associated with bad music. That said, there are plenty of people I’m honored to be mentioned in the same sentence as. I’m not trying to dismiss an entire type of music, just fraudulent vampires.