July 19th, 2010
If we were writing a book entitled 101 Ways Not to Fuck Up Your Chances At Being a Rock Star, our first rule would be: “Do NOT date Winona Ryder.” (Just ask Dave Pirner, Stephan Jenkins, Jamiroquai’s Jay Kay, that ass-hat from Counting Crows…the list goes on and on and on and on and on and on…).
Near as we can tell, though, 101 Ways Not to Fuck Up your Chances at Being a Rock Star — the musicians’ advice guide currently being written by Philly’s own Garrett “G. Love” Dutton, does not contain that valuable nugget of wisdom. What’s in it? G. Love gave Spinner a little taste the other day (they censored his foul fucking mouth, not us!) after talking for a bit about his best bud Jack Johnson (blechhhh):
I know you’re writing a book right now – “101 Ways Not to F— Up Your Chance of Being a Rock Star.” Is that still going?
Yeah, man. I’m working on that because I’ve seen it all. I’ve been in the game now for 17 years. Just the way my career’s gone, I’ve had a lot of lot of ups and downs. So I’ve seen all sides of the music industry – everything you can imagine, from getting dropped to getting signed to getting dropped [again] and everything that goes with that — from the fancy dinners and limo rides to the no-return phone calls.
What are some of your examples?
Let me pull a couple up. [The book] says, “I Love Your S—, But Don’t Believe Your Own Bulls—’ . . . Musicians have to believe their own bulls—. If you didn’t believe your own bulls—, you wouldn’t exist. All of the subtleties of being an artist have to do with believing your own bulls—. It seems the bigger you get, the more bulls— you can have, too. I once heard a story of Prince having his whole hotel room in Hawaii carpeted so that his feet wouldn’t get cold – in Hawaii! Bulls—! “I only drink Evian” – bullshit! ‘I don’t feel like playing this single’ – bulls—! ‘I’m tired of touring’ – bulls—!’”
I like the “I’m not playing this single” part.
I used to deal with that a lot. Because you’re making all these songs, and you love all your songs, and all of the sudden, you get a record deal and someone says, “This is your best song.” And you say, “Well, that’s just one of my songs, and actually I don’t feel like playing that tonight.” And they’re like, “Well, we have a whole team of people working around the clock to make this one song recognizable!”
We’d go on ‘Conan O’Brien,’ not understanding, like, “You’re gonna go play this single for this and this obvious reason.” And it was like, “No, I don’t feel like playing that song today. I want to play this song that nobody knows that’s not recorded because it’s my new song.”
If you go see somebody that’s really big – whether it’s the Stones or Sheryl Crow – you just want to hear the hits. We just saw Paul McCartney in Fenway Park [in Boston], and the guy played everything you’d want to hear. Every Beatles songs you grew up with. I mean, he must have played 35 tunes. And out of those 35 tunes, he played two or four new songs. And you could feel the whole audience just being like, “All right – that’s enough of this s—.”
The audience is greedy. And musicians are greedy. So sometime you’ve got to meet in the middle.