This may not come as much of a surprise, given that he often dresses like an old-country mortician and has spent much of the past year behaving like an eccentric millionaire on par with Howard Hughes, but Jack White isn’t really feeling Lady Gaga.
In a new interview with the British edition of Esquire, White takes a swipe at Gaga over what he perceives to be her lack of authenticity.
“I don’t think she lives it, because it’s all artifice,” White says. “It’s all image with no meaning behind it. You can’t sink your teeth into it. It’s a sound bite. It’s very of this age, because that’s what people want.”
Of course, serval outlets picked up the quote, which led White to issue a statement Wednesday (December 5) afternoon that took the media to task for its “tabloidesque drama baiting,” and said that his quotes were taken out of context.
“I never said anything about her music, or questioned the authenticity of her songs in any way. I was in a conversation about the drawbacks of image for the sake of image, and that it is popular nowadays to not question an image in front of you, but only to label it as ‘cool’ or ‘weird’ quickly and dispose of it,” the statement read in part. “I don’t like my comments about Lady Gaga’s presentation being changed into some sort of negative critique of her music. If you’re going to try to cause drama, at least get the quotes right. I think journalists should also be held accountable for what they say. Especially publications like the NME who put whatever words they feel like between two quotation marks and play it off as a quote. ”
In the headline of their story, the NME inserted the words “Lady Gaga’s music” into White’s quote, a practice he said prevents musicians from giving meaningful quotes to publications, for fear that they might be misued.
“I … think that kind of tabloid drama encourages artists to not express their opinions in the press, and instead give polite soundbites that don’t stimulate thought about creativity and the consumption of art in its many guises,” White wrote. “Peace to Lady Gaga and I fully congratulate and compliment her on her championing of gay rights issues and the momentum it’s given to help create change.”
Of course, one thing that White didn’t back away from was his take on the age in which we live (which is ironic given the flap over his quotes): Turns out, White isn’t much of a fan of it, condemning celebrity culture, reality television and the instant-gratification (and lack of substance) of sites like Twitter in the Esquire interview.
“The goal of modern celebrity is to make yourself into the lowest common denominator: ‘Hey, I’m a guy just like you. I like a beer, a football game,'” he says. “Especially in reality television, you’ll see people will go as far as to make a fool out of themselves just to prove that … Twitter is the most perfect example of modern living. I think the only people who should have [Twitter accounts] are comedians. Because it’s all about one-liners.”
We wonder if he and Adam Levine have exchanged hand-written letters about “Here Comes Honey BooBoo?”
What do you think about White’s comments? Let us know in the comments below.