Monday, September 10, 2007

John Lydon on Songwriting

You can read the full article/interview of John Lydon (aka Johnny Rotten of the Sex Pistols) by Steve Baltan on here. I just wanted to select some of the interview questions and answers below:

  • Q: How does being a judge for the Bodog Battle of the Bands live series with all those young artists inspire you?
  • A: Oh, I find it thrilling. It's enjoyable in the extreme. Some of them are not great. Others are really quite startling, but not every time. But it's live music and it's their own songs, wonderful: These are two things that the music business is ignoring and actually trying to stop. I don't see any record companies really out there supporting live music or songwriting at all. In fact, they're all out to chisel us out of our copyrights one way or the other.
  • Q: Talking about music and songwriting, are there any pop songs or songwriters you really admire?
  • A: No. It's all been trivialized in a Britney Spears-y kind of way, hasn't it? They've taken it and killed off the energy and co-opted us into this commercialism that's really, really dull. Britney is Wal-Mart and Wal-Mart's all right for T-shirts and socks, that's about what she is. The industry for a long time now, going back for 20 years solidly, has not backed songwriting from the youth point of view. It's actually killed youth culture and rebellion and repackaged and remodeled it into very, very dreary things. There's powerful stuff in rap music, but honestly, 98 percent of it is mindless and repetitive and tedious. Now, I worked with Afrika Bambaataa some 20-plus years ago, and what's changed since then? What's as good as 'The Message'? Nothing comes to mind. Most of it is utterly selfish and it's all about acquiring goods and bragging about how much jewelry you can wear at once. If that's what the white man has taught the black man, that selfishness is the root to all success, they're wrong.

Gotta love it Johnny Rotten... always the anarchist and that's who stands up for the artist/songwriter... May the Muse be with Johnny...

Ci vedimes...

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