Don't call me an actor.
April 8, 2009 3:12 PM   Subscribe

Hear (and see) Billy Bob Thornton go off on radio. Mr Thornton and the Boxcutters were the featured guest for the first half-hour of CBC Radio's "Q with Jian Ghomeshi". The host made the unpardonable sin of referring to Mr Thornton's other vocations. Cringe-worthy radio ensues. Shades of Joaquin Phoenix?

Hey, it's just Canada, but all the same it was noticed.
posted by Artful Codger (196 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
Listen to the entire thing, it's worth it. It's a goatse level of asshole on display.
posted by unsupervised at 3:14 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


Perhaps stranger then Billy Bob's tantrum was Ghomeshi's inability to just apologize and move on.

On the other hand, I was happy to hear all about "Famous Monsters of Filmland".

And it's BoxMASTERS, dammit!
posted by mazola at 3:16 PM on April 8, 2009


Cocaine is a hell of a drug.
posted by boo_radley at 3:16 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


BoxMASTERS, sorry. Now I'm gonna get a phone call...
posted by Artful Codger at 3:16 PM on April 8, 2009


Could have been some sort of publicity stunt.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 3:18 PM on April 8, 2009


This looks hella fake.
posted by billysumday at 3:19 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


> This looks hella fake.

It's the real deal. The show is 5 days a week. And it was LIVE.

Sorry Billy Bob, no do-over.
posted by Artful Codger at 3:22 PM on April 8, 2009


man, that was pretty fucking unrelenting. The rest of the band looks miserable, and it's like a Terry-Gross-meets-Gene-Simmons level of discomfort without the comedy value.
posted by boo_radley at 3:22 PM on April 8, 2009


I don't know. How many people knew of Boxmasters yesterday? And then today? He seems to be smirking a lot at the beginning, and it feels pretty stagey. I would vote for publicity stunt, but I suppose there's no reason why it couldn't be real.
posted by billysumday at 3:25 PM on April 8, 2009


Jesus, what an asshole. Props to Jian for not backing down and grovelling, which is clearly what BBT wanted from him. He had nothing to apologize FOR. He's not working for BBT's PR, he's working for the Canadian people.

"Music historian" my ass.

I am now permanently turned off Billy Bob Thornton projects. His music sucks anyway.
posted by Hildegarde at 3:28 PM on April 8, 2009


Q: Billy Bob, you guys formed only in the last couple of years, right?
A: I don't know what you are talking about.

Q: How so?
A: I don't know what you mean by that.

Q: When did the band form?
A: I'm not sure what that means.


I'll bet this guy is a blast at parties.
posted by y6y6y6 at 3:29 PM on April 8, 2009 [5 favorites]


I love after their "truce" and Billy Bob has to get all serious he mutters the words "It's a mixture of the British invasion and hillbilly music."
posted by starman at 3:31 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


I would vote for publicity stunt...

You've got my vote, too.
posted by ericb at 3:32 PM on April 8, 2009


I wonder if anyone ever fastened a camera to Billy Bob Thornton's collar for a day. I think the results would be fascinating.

(I missed this live today. Am kicking self.)
posted by maudlin at 3:33 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


This is a toxic cocktail of ego and goof. "Grew up as a musical historian..." Jesus, what an a-hole.
posted by stinkycheese at 3:34 PM on April 8, 2009


Publicity stunt? I guess it could have been. Given the track record of rock groups fronted by actors, Thornton would pretty much have had to have killed Ghomeshi with his bare bands, torn his heart out of his chest, and eaten it* for anyone to pay any real attention to his band. As it is, everyone will listen/watch this clip, snicker, and go back to not listening to The Boxcutters.

* disclaimer: I wish this had happened.
posted by The Card Cheat at 3:35 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


Jesus, that was cringeworthy. Jian is one of the nicest guys on radio, and I can't imagine the stress of having to deal with that level of bullshit live & on air. Whether or not this is a stage, and I don't think that it is, Billy Bob's a dick. F*** him and his sideproject.
posted by ZaphodB at 3:37 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


Thornton's wiki page suggests he might have OCD, could the combination of that and high-powered actor ego have created this behavior?
posted by R_Nebblesworth at 3:37 PM on April 8, 2009


The interviewer should have ignored him and turned to the rest of the band to continue the interview without reference to the douchebag with the facelift behaving like a toddler in the corner.
posted by fire&wings at 3:38 PM on April 8, 2009 [7 favorites]


I will not have Billy Bob Thorton disrespect a former member of Moxy Früvous.
posted by The White Hat at 3:40 PM on April 8, 2009 [13 favorites]


Interviewer is great though.
posted by fire&wings at 3:40 PM on April 8, 2009


Another Boxmasters interview here
posted by R_Nebblesworth at 3:40 PM on April 8, 2009


I would have been pissed too if a radio host like Jian Ghomeshi got my band's name wrong: it's BoxMASTERS not Boxcutters.

Although I love Jian to death, that's just stupid.
posted by KokuRyu at 3:40 PM on April 8, 2009


Wow, that's sad. I liked Billy Bob Thornton as an actor, but damn, the level of douchiness coming off him is astounding. I suppose it's possible that it was some sort of performance art/ publicity stunt, but the thing is, the best way to get me into whatever you're working on isn't to make me dislike you at a molecular level.

Maybe some context will come out that will change my mind, like right before he did the interview he got hit in the head with a brick, and was suffering from a concussion, (also, there was maybe big fist-fulls of PCP involved), but failing that, he's not going to sell me any albums.
posted by quin at 3:40 PM on April 8, 2009


I think we can all agree that Boxcutters is a better name than Boxmasters.
posted by box at 3:41 PM on April 8, 2009 [13 favorites]


Thornton's wiki page suggests he might have OCD

from Wikipedia:

Thornton confesses that "pieces from 1700 and 1800 France and England really freak me out, especially harpsichords."

Now that's my kind of batshitinsane.
posted by dhammond at 3:41 PM on April 8, 2009 [4 favorites]


*Thornton, that is. Billy Bob Thorton can do whatever he wishes.
posted by The White Hat at 3:42 PM on April 8, 2009


I reckon I like that hillbilly British music, more than French fried taters, mmm-hmmm!
posted by mattdidthat at 3:42 PM on April 8, 2009


Holy fucking shit, just listening to it. He pretty much grew up as a music historian, his first love was Lisa Cohen (sp?), bikers to old people to young people, we don't cart those around at six o'clock in the morning. Them're a favoritin', MMMMMMHM.

I only wish the host had asked Billy Bob what he liked to eat at the Frostee Creme.
posted by cog_nate at 3:44 PM on April 8, 2009


Why not just keep talking with BBT about monsters? He obviously didn't really want to talk about that; what he wanted was to look like a dick, which he succeeded at.
posted by roll truck roll at 3:46 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


I was hoping Jian would suddenly change the topic to Angelina Jolie.
posted by Hildegarde at 3:47 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


(mattdidthat: cog_nate, what in the hell are you doing with that lawn mower blade?)
posted by cog_nate at 3:48 PM on April 8, 2009


I've also heard that Billy bob has serious neurosis about odd things. Like food.
Yeah , he was an asshole but it sounds like he specifically asked them NOT to mention him being an actor, and they did so consequently he was pissed and handled it like a prick. Not that hard to understand really.
posted by Liquidwolf at 3:50 PM on April 8, 2009


This is pretty good:
Maybe next time you should take anyone who behaves like that in your studio and kick them out right away. Maybe from now on, you, I and all the other arts journalists out there should resolve that spoiled behaviour ends an interview on the spot.

Apparently Billy Bob Thornton was rude to you because you mentioned he was an actor (boo hoo).

Know what? I have a rule where I automatically say no to the interview-with-conditions, where you're asked not to talk about X or Y because it would offend the interviewee's delicate sensibilities. (I gather it's something that happens a lot in the States and I don't want it to become the norm here.)

I get the occasional request like this and I turn it down every time. Because to me, you're either doing an interview or you're not. You're either using me, the journalist, as a conduit to openly and honestly communicate with the fans and people who are interested in you, or you're just trying to use me as some sort of dummy to help you plug what you want to plug.

It's not fair to the audience if I accept a conversation with artificial boundaries, because then it's me and the interviewee conspiring to give the appearance of openness when there is none. (And to outlets that accept interviews with restrictions, I say shame on you.)

When publicists tell me not to talk about X or Y during an interview, I respond that I will ask what I like, and if the person I'm interviewing is an adult, he or she can refuse to answer the question with the same grace that is expected of all adults. If that doesn't work, no interview.
posted by Hildegarde at 3:51 PM on April 8, 2009 [19 favorites]


KokuRyu: "I would have been pissed too if a radio host like Jian Ghomeshi got my band's name wrong: it's BoxMASTERS not Boxcutters.

Although I love Jian to death, that's just stupid.
"

He called them the Boxmasters.

Billy Bob comes off as a defensive prick masterfully blending an inferiority complex with a massive ego. He should use his acting skills and pretend to be something other than a petulant child. His bandmates looked depressed and embarrassed.
posted by defenestration at 3:58 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


The correct response to "I'm something of a music historian".

....should have been "aren't we all?"

Of course, I do have a degree in music, myself. So unlike him I'm not completely full of it with that comeback. Similarly, neither would the radio host who surely has criticized and talked to more bands than BBT. Tangentially, I'm sure doctors love it when random people say things like "yeah I'm something of a medicinal specialist". Right.


But seriously, what a pretentious asshole. You can tell his band is just psyched to be on the radio and playing their music. But him? He is an insult to REAL musicians everywhere.

Didn't even bring your instrument to the gig? You FORGOT your instrument? What?? you say music is not a hobby but that's amateur!

Would 'Tom Petty' FIRE YOUR ASS for that? Yes he would.
posted by 5imian at 3:58 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


It's not like Thornton's The King of Spain or nuthin'. (link goes to veoh.com, so there may be some ancillary NSFWish stuff in some of the thumbnails)

Actually, if you watch this clip of Früvous on Conan O'Brien's show, it might shed some light on the incredulity that Jian has when faced with Billy Bob's lame excuse for not playing because he's the drummer.

While I can somewhat understand where Billy Bob is coming from, there's no excuse to be a jerk. Kudos to Jian for keeping things somewhat on track and calming Billy Bob down to the point of civility.

Heck, I really wanted Jian to just jump up and jam with the band when Billy Bob refused to play.

(Okay, not so much jamming going on there. Why are there so few good quality Früvous vids out there?)
posted by ooga_booga at 4:00 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


[turns away from BBT] "So, guys, what's it like to be in a band without a serious, professional singer? I imagine that'd be frustrating for passionate musicians like yourselves (or Tom Petty)."
posted by The Tensor at 4:00 PM on April 8, 2009 [6 favorites]


Bruce Willis: They'll do it. They've made a few requests though.

Billy Bob: I don't know what you mean by that.

Bruce Willis: Well, there's uh, few things here, uh... Well, as an example, uh, uh, Oscar here, he's got some outstanding parking tickets. Wants them wiped off his record.

Billy Bob: I'm not sure what you mean.

Bruce Willis: Max would like you to... bring back eight-track tapes. Hey, you guys wouldn't be able to tell us who actually killed Kennedy, would ya?

Billy Bob: You were instructed not to talk about that.

Bruce Willis: Um, Bear would like to stay at the White House.

Billy Bob: I grew up as a film historian.

Bruce Willis: Yeah one more thing, um... none of them wanna pay taxes again. Ever.

Billy Bob: Famous Monsters of Filmland.
posted by panboi at 4:01 PM on April 8, 2009 [7 favorites]


KokuRyu, the DJ DID call them the Boxmasters, here on mefi some of us have gotten it wrong.

Aside from that, Billy Bob should just go back to scripts and acting, he certainly has no concept of polite conversation.

And with all the jaw clenching and twitching maybe he SHOULD put down the stem.
posted by Max Power at 4:04 PM on April 8, 2009


Growing up with the name Billy Bob will do this to a person.
posted by Sailormom at 4:07 PM on April 8, 2009 [5 favorites]


I like Billy Bob, but he needs to take some lessons from Willie Nelson in general courtesy and humility. And maybe hang out on his bus for a time or two.
posted by krinklyfig at 4:07 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


He's never met Willie Nelson.
posted by Hildegarde at 4:09 PM on April 8, 2009 [12 favorites]


Yeah, he's an asshole.

Still, he's had knives-and-blood-vials sex with Angelina Jolie and we haven't.
posted by Joe Beese at 4:10 PM on April 8, 2009 [8 favorites]


Billy Bob Thornton: Better actor than musician.

Jian Ghomeshi: Better musician than interviewer.
posted by markkraft at 4:18 PM on April 8, 2009


I think Jian handles himself really well.
posted by stray at 4:22 PM on April 8, 2009


(Seriously, though... Jian Ghomeshi should make another Moxy Fruvous album and stop messing around with this side hobby of his. Maybe it could be in the soundtrack of the next BBT movie.)
posted by markkraft at 4:22 PM on April 8, 2009


KokuRyu, the DJ DID call them the Boxmasters, here on mefi some of us have gotten it wrong.

Yeah, it seems that I was wrong. Then again, for some reason some of the media in Canada are also reporting the band's name as "the Boxcutters", which I suppose is poetic justice in the case of Billy Bob, but not for his band.

As for Jian Ghomeshi, he is the first CBC radio personality to actually NOT suck during the daytime since Peter Gzowski. We're lucky to have him.
posted by KokuRyu at 4:23 PM on April 8, 2009


I wonder what "Can you tell me a little about the history of space cowboys?" would've met with. I'm guessing that in his mind, Tom Petty sounds like one (on constant rotation), and that's about as specific as it gets.
posted by gorgor_balabala at 4:23 PM on April 8, 2009


The rest of the band looks miserable, and it's like a Terry-Gross-meets-Gene-Simmons level of discomfort without the comedy value.

Excellent reference.

Ever since the plastic surgery, I can't tell Billy Bob Thornton apart from Tommy Lee Jones.
posted by mecran01 at 4:24 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


When I was in university, Moxy Fruvous was considered to be the antithesis of cool at first. Then the band's name became synonymous with assaulting your girlfriend.
posted by KokuRyu at 4:24 PM on April 8, 2009


Jian Ghomeshi: Better musician than interviewer.

No way! Dude does his research. I listen to Q regularly and Jian is always on top of whatever the topic at hand is, from obscure branches of the arts to federal government funding and censorship issues. Now, he has a staff and all, but he generally comes off pretty well. Now, the Johnny Rotten interview on Radio 3, woo-hoo. That was batshitinsane.
posted by GuyZero at 4:25 PM on April 8, 2009


Still, he's had knives-and-blood-vials sex with Angelina Jolie and we haven't.

That's presuming a lot about what I haven't done.
posted by Astro Zombie at 4:26 PM on April 8, 2009 [11 favorites]


Wow. I was expecting much, much worse. That was more of a tiny hissy fit than a full blown rage. Bah. Billy Bob let me down. I wanted him to start quoting Bible verse and threatening everyone's parents.
posted by ColdChef at 4:31 PM on April 8, 2009


Still, he's had knives-and-blood-vials sex with Angelina Jolie and we haven't.

Thank Christ.

I call them Boxblusters.
posted by turgid dahlia at 4:31 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


Uh-huh. You know, half-way through that I'm thinking "I wonder why no MeFites jumped to the obvious drug conclusion." But by the time our man gets talkative I can see that's not it.

Jian is really the man here, btw. But I love the moment of uncertainty when he gets his first set of non-answers from BBT and glances over at the band who appear to be studying the floor.

The interviewer should have ignored him and turned to the rest of the band to continue the interview without reference to the douchebag with the facelift behaving like a toddler in the corner.

No, Jian knows his job, and his job here was basically to interview BBT and his band, whoever they are. So he tries to draw the man out. It's also why Jian seems to be laughing at the joke of having this band play without him on the show. As he points out, the band is getting attention partly (way to be charitable, J) because of Billy Bob's fame in other areas. What a mess. Though a part of me wishes that he was being interviewed by someone who would just wind him up like a top and let him go apeshit like you know he could.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 4:35 PM on April 8, 2009 [2 favorites]


Gosh Billy Bob, for a guy so hung up on not being labeled you sure do seem to embrace the label of asshole. Oh. And the label of "Your band sucks shit."
posted by tkchrist at 4:37 PM on April 8, 2009


We're only looking at this because we know this person as an actor and sex partner of Angelina Jolie. Billy Bob, he don't want that. And once we realize that the act isn't the result of drugs or insanity, but simply an actor's petulance over a very slight annoyance, it's not interesting anyway.

So here, give Billy Bob his wish. Ignore him and go watch a talented, good-humoured and modest musician instead: Neko Case on QTV
posted by TimTypeZed at 4:37 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


Right, 'cuz it's actually the drummers' girlfriends who cart their drums around at 6:00 in the mornin' and BBT doesn't have one. OOHHHHH BURRRRRRN!
posted by katillathehun at 4:38 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


He must've eaten some non-orange food. That'll make a guy go off.
posted by miss lynnster at 4:47 PM on April 8, 2009 [2 favorites]


Sure, Jian does a fine job as an interviewer -- for a hobbyist -- and can play the drums and sing a bit. But he can't play the drums and sing a bit as well as Jian.

That said, Jian Ghomeshi can't act. Billy Bob can.

It's time for another Moxy album already...!
posted by markkraft at 4:54 PM on April 8, 2009


Yeah , he was an asshole but it sounds like he specifically asked them NOT to mention him being an actor, and they did so consequently he was pissed and handled it like a prick. Not that hard to understand really.

When he is Led Zeppelin, he can make outrageous requests like "don't talk about the fact that I am already internationally famous." (And yes, I just used Led Zeppelin as if it were the name of a person.) Drummers for obscure new bands that happen to, out of nowhere, be gigging with Willie Nelson don't get to demand that the interviewer stay away from the topic of the very reason why this obscure new band is touring with Willie and getting an interview on the radio. As a current member of two bands that I think are quite good and into which I have poured a lot of effort, I have a hard time not being outraged at a guy who starts a band, has time to record a lot because he's super rich, gets amazing gigs and interviews because he's famous, and then is so embarrassed by the giant advantage that he has over guys like me that he demands that interviewers not mention that advantage.

It's like Miley Cyrus demanding that nobody mention Billy Ray and pretending that she doesn't have a multi-million dollar marketing and production juggernaut behind her.

There are literally millions of us out here paying real musical dues, working day jobs, and hanging on to the adolescent dream of getting to play music on a national stage. Billy Bob Thornton is slapping us in the face with that attitude. When you go to an interview, be gracious, humble, and frank. You can bet that Billy Bob doesn't treat Willie Nelson like dirt if Willie mentions that he likes one of Billy Bob's films. And if he does demand that Willie Nelson not ever mention Billy Bob's film career, then maybe Billy Bob really hasn't ever met Willie Nelson and that's the reason.
posted by The World Famous at 4:57 PM on April 8, 2009 [29 favorites]


'Douchebag' has become my least favorite word of all time. Okay, also 'dickish'. These are terrible, shitty, fucked-up words. Stop using them, you're hurting Freedom.
posted by Gamien Boffenburg at 5:01 PM on April 8, 2009 [2 favorites]


The moment I knew I wasn't impressed with BBT as an actor was while watching Tombstone and the whole time shouting at my boyfriend, "Why does that fat guy sound and act exactly like Billy Bob Thornton?!"
posted by birdie birdington at 5:04 PM on April 8, 2009


Jeebusl, Billy Bob, what a jerk you're being. At least think of your bandmates, man. Have a little respect for them.

And you were just so damn good in Slingblade*.

*I received no instructions from my producer.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:18 PM on April 8, 2009


Now that I think about it, there was a similar incident with Beyonce's younger sister recently. This one is especially funny because she flips out about something that wasn't even on television.
posted by dhammond at 5:19 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


'Douchebag' has become my least favorite word of all time. Okay, also 'dickish'. These are terrible, shitty, fucked-up words. Stop using them, you're hurting Freedom.

I'll assume that dickbag and doucheist are still okay.
posted by found missing at 5:26 PM on April 8, 2009


And the other thing, Billy Bob, if you're such a music historian and all, you should know that the drummer, fer chrissakes, is s'posed to be the friendly, fun-loving, jovial nice guy of the group. Do your homework.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:30 PM on April 8, 2009


I think it's freaking awesome that QTV didn't include the song the band played in the YouTube video.

If the interview had gone even passably well, I'll bet they would have. Behaving like (as someone so aptly put it above) a petulant child should not be encouraged.
posted by nosila at 5:33 PM on April 8, 2009


Billy Bob has been silenced all his life.
posted by Pants! at 5:38 PM on April 8, 2009


No, Jian knows his job, and his job here was basically to interview BBT and his band, whoever they are.

Not really. Half the time that should have been spent talking about the music and the band was spent indulging someone who would never have been indulged if he wasn't a famous asshole acting like a famous asshole because someone who was trying to help his vanity side project gain fame by interviewing him mentioned his other very famous line of work. His films are shit and other than his fame as a citation in the Relationships section of Angelina Jolie's wikipedia page and Celebrity Plastic Surgery Disaster blogs he really has no right to be throwing himself around like that and getting away with it. If Jian had some balls (although I'm sure he's answering to honchos of some sort) he should have spent the slot interacting with those who were co-operating, which is probably what he would have done if it was Jimmy Nobody of some shitty indie band acting like a dick. But then most aspiring musicians with a passion for music don't act this way when given an opportunity to talk about their work to an audience - they can't really afford to.

It's really pathetic to see something like this when a simple "Hey, I'd prefer not to talk about or refer to my acting right now, I'm here with my band" accompanied with a smile at the very start would have easily diffused any misunderstanding. Instead you can see him quietly and vainly seething from half way through his introduction. He's fucking his band over.
posted by fire&wings at 5:42 PM on April 8, 2009


C,WAA
posted by mrnutty at 5:46 PM on April 8, 2009


'Douchebag' has become my least favorite word of all time.

I used to hate that word too, until I had to interact with a few folks through my work who are, quite frankly, douchebags. "Cad" and "snake in the grass" come close, but are either archaic or just not that impactful as epithets.
posted by KokuRyu at 5:55 PM on April 8, 2009 [2 favorites]


Not really. Half the time that should have been spent talking about the music and the band was spent indulging someone who would never have been indulged if he wasn't a famous asshole acting like a famous asshole

Sure, but the initial damage had been done. At that point he had two choices: indulge the asshole and try to draw him into the interview, or have an interview (and as it turns out performance) with an entirely silent Billy Bob Thornton who, for purposes of radio, may as well not even have been there. Which do you think his producers would want?
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 6:03 PM on April 8, 2009


Here's a transcript of the interview.

I heard this on CBC Radio One this morning and it was quite surreal. Billy Bob came off as a pouting, entitled idiot; I thought Jian handled it very well, and I say this as someone who is normally fairly meh about Jian Ghomeshi.

Perhaps stranger then Billy Bob's tantrum was Ghomeshi's inability to just apologize and move on.

He didn't do anything wrong, and I don't think he had anything to apologize for. I certainly wouldn't have apologized. In fact, I would have been tempted to ask for an apology from Billy Bob for his insane assholishness.

Now that I've seen the video I feel sorry for BBT's bandmates. They look soooo uncomfortable.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 6:16 PM on April 8, 2009


I would have been tempted to ask for an apology from Billy Bob for his insane assholishness.

Hell before it even got going good I was sitting here saying, ' kick that motherfucker off your set. tell him to take his shitty band and hit the road' And I say that with all due repect to Danny Baker
posted by nola at 6:20 PM on April 8, 2009


There is no way this band would have been able to release any records or get to tour with Willie fucking Nelson if it wasnt for Billy Bob Thornton's celebrity. What a tool.
posted by ElmerFishpaw at 6:20 PM on April 8, 2009


Unless, of course, the whole thing is a put-on. Then he's awesome.
posted by ElmerFishpaw at 6:21 PM on April 8, 2009


Not saying Billy Bob is not an asshole sober, but surely there were asshole-enhancing substances involved in that performance.
posted by iconjack at 6:27 PM on April 8, 2009


I love it when MeFites unite in ridicule in a thread.

As you were.

posted by orange swan at 6:27 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


Some people call 'em the Boxcutters, I call 'em the Sling Blades.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 6:28 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


Zing even.
posted by nola at 6:31 PM on April 8, 2009


I am simply reminded how much I miss Moxy. Jesus wept.
posted by cheap paper at 6:31 PM on April 8, 2009


Really, what would you expect a 53 year old man who goes by the name 'Billy Bob' to act like? He's a freak and a jerk. Any self respecting hillbilly would disown him.
posted by Daddy-O at 6:33 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


his first love was Lisa Cohen (sp?)

Don't. Mention. Lisa.
posted by fleacircus at 6:33 PM on April 8, 2009 [6 favorites]


Great news for Jian Ghomeshi's future prospects. Some US network is going to say, who is this guy and then go and poach him just like they did JD Roberts. And Gretzky.
Especially since it's looking increasingly likely that Jian's hair is going to turn a fine shade of anchorman silver.
posted by Flashman at 6:38 PM on April 8, 2009


'Douchebag' has become my least favorite word of all time. Okay, also 'dickish'. These are terrible, shitty, fucked-up words. Stop using them, you're hurting Freedom.

posted by Gamien Boffenburg at 6:01 PM on April 8

How do you feel about 'Boffenburg' as a replacement?
posted by lukemeister at 6:48 PM on April 8, 2009


BBT is such a Boffenburg.
posted by Hildegarde at 6:55 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


wait, I hear an owl... shhhh


Whooo whooooo! Whooo whooooo! Whoooo cares!

Didja hear that?
posted by not_on_display at 6:59 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


Would you ask Tom Petty that question?

You are not TOM FUCKING PETTY!
posted by P.o.B. at 7:01 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


You'd think a self-proclaimed 'music historian' would know when his own band first started playing together.
posted by grounded at 7:02 PM on April 8, 2009 [7 favorites]


'Douchebag' has become my least favorite word of all time.

This is a weird tangent, but I care about words more than I care about Billy Bob Thornton, so: I've heard this a few times before at MeFi, and I do admit it is an overused epithet, but it is an almost perfect word in terms of sound, especially, and does express a very specific idea for which I have been unable to find an equally evocative replacement. I think I will probably continue using it and its variations, in moderation.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:03 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


My favorite part is how he sucks his own dick the entire interview, and doesn't even bring the drum kit to back it up. Next time, the Coxmasters should decide not to cart Billy Bob around at six-o-clock in the morning.
posted by thebellafonte at 7:05 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


I love how "DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM?" has been replaced with "HOW DARE YOU KNOW WHO I AM?".
posted by FelliniBlank at 7:17 PM on April 8, 2009 [18 favorites]


I think it's freaking awesome that QTV didn't include the song the band played in the YouTube video

From the Youtube post: "The performance is not included as we have not yet resolved the rights issues to it. If we do we will post that as well."
posted by NailsTheCat at 7:20 PM on April 8, 2009


Please don't bring up the time I was married to Jessica Alba and won the Nobel Prize at age 18. I hate that.
posted by lukemeister at 7:20 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Stop using [words I don't like], you're hurting Freedom."

I don't think that means what you think it means.
posted by y6y6y6 at 7:28 PM on April 8, 2009


I once designed an album cover for Muxy Fruvous. We met the band and their manager and talked a bit about what they wanted their packaging to looked like, basically kicking around ideas. The band was awesome: funny, smart and interested. Jian on the other hand couldn't have cared less; he sat away from everyone and refused participate or even acknowledge us as being in the same room. He spent the entire time doodeling on a sketchpad and ignoring any question or remark tossed his way which made for a fairly weird and uncomfortable meeting. I gave him the benifit of doubt and filled it under weird tortured artist. At least until everyone had left and I realized he had forgotten his sketchpad. Turns out he had been practicing his signature for a good hour. Seems this morning the shoe was on the other foot. (And to his credit he handled it well).
posted by tighttrousers at 7:40 PM on April 8, 2009 [11 favorites]


I watched this with an open mind and my reaction was pretty much that it just looks like he wasn't having a great day. But dude, you didn't bring your freakin drums? You get invited to do an interview and play on this show and you don't bring the equipment that is crucial to your role in the group?

I don't care if those other guys can barely even play. They need to ditch that tool. Otherwise you are on a road to nowhere my friends.
posted by Big_B at 7:40 PM on April 8, 2009


'Still, he's had knives-and-blood-vials sex with Angelina Jolie and we haven't.'
Astro_Zombie: That's presuming a lot about what I haven't done.

This post is useless without pictures.
posted by Greg_Ace at 7:44 PM on April 8, 2009


P.o.B.: You are not TOM FUCKING PETTY!

/awaits the inevitable BBT video, "I'm Fucking Tom Petty"
posted by Greg_Ace at 7:46 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


I am not sure if Ghomeshi:

a) failed to discreetly avoid a situation that could embarrass the band
b) failed to exploit a situation that could have resulted in much more hilarity
c) succeeded in delicately navigating a potential minefield

I suspect c. But somewhere, deep down, my reptilian brain was smelling blood and wanting Ghomeshi to go for it. Someone comes on MY show, acts like drugged out pompous ass, they should get - at the very least - some not-too-terribly-gentle chiding for it. Letterman handled Joaquin Phoenix pretty well, I thought - dishing out some shots that indicated his displeasure, but not totally humiliating the evidently impaired Mr. Phoenix. You don't have to be Letterman to expect respect and civility from anyone you deal with.

As for BBT having any issue whatsoever about Ghomeshi's reference to his other fame and success, BBT was totally out of line. Ghomeshi simply gave context. If BBT really wanted to not talk about it at all, he could have done as many, many other people have done before him, and used a goddamn pseudonym.

One thing though that Ghomeshi did that annoyed me. He didn't ask what BBT had made for the FM contest. I used to read Famous Monsters too, and I always thought Forry Ackerman was the friggin bomb.
posted by Xoebe at 7:48 PM on April 8, 2009


> But dude, you didn't bring your freakin drums?

He's also, uh, the lead singer, but apparently he forgot that instrument as well.
posted by Artful Codger at 7:50 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


Well, I've learned something very important here today. Two things actually.

First, I do a certain amount of public speaking, and often there's a Q&A afterward, and so from now on any time anyone asks a question I don't want to answer, I'm just going to say, "Would you say that to Tom Petty?" Seriously, that's an excellent rejoinder to pretty much any question I can imagine that I wouldn't want to answer:

Q. Don't you think nuclear's a better alternative than renewables?
A. Would you say that to Tom Petty?

Q. Are you sure your sources are reliable?
A. Would you say that to Tom Petty?

Q. Are you going to put your pants back on, or am I going to have to ask you to leave?
A. Would you say that to Tom Petty?

Second, and I say this as someone with a strong distaste for your-favourite-band-sucksisms in general, I am utterly floored to learn that there are seemingly sane and ostensibly music-loving adults out there besides mrs. gompa who would greet the prospect of a new Moxy Fruvous album with anything other than violent nausea.
posted by gompa at 7:55 PM on April 8, 2009 [14 favorites]


You know what? Fuck your vanity band. Do the french-fried taters bit for us or GTFO, dancing monkey.
posted by dgaicun at 8:03 PM on April 8, 2009 [10 favorites]


By the look of his neck that guy is, what, 50? I know 4-year-olds with more dignity. Shame.

Then again, maybe he was up all night on the pipe? Either way, what a wad.
posted by facetious at 8:17 PM on April 8, 2009


"Blew up" didn't exactly happen. Maybe "Billy Bob is Bitchy" would have been a better post title.

I'll defend the fucker. He sounds like he had a piss-poor day, and wasn't too interested in yet another interview, especially after they took away his cigarettes. Hearing it start with his acting resume was probably just the last bit of his frayed-looking nerves exploding.

Heck, I've done radio interviews at 6am, too, and I'm only a little less cranky. Of course, I mask it better.... I think. If Thornton wanted to be that bitchy, he should have just walked out and let the rest of the band handle it; they were clearly capable.

Also, Ghomeshi (interviewer) did fine, but he might have diffused the thing quicker if he didn't insist on being the only Canadian on Earth who can't just say "Sorry" and move on. The interview went fine when he ignored Thornton's non-contributions, and only went to hell when he decided to push... which probably wasn't necessary unless he wanted a nice controversial segment.
posted by rokusan at 8:27 PM on April 8, 2009


He wants to be taken seriously as a musician, but knows most people will think his music is just a hobby/side project/vanity act. But he fails to be honest with himself about this reality, and instead demands people never mention he's an actor? Which is fucking absurd.

Why not just be honest with people and graciously say "look I know a lot of people won't take this seriously b/c they only know me as an actor, but I'm doing this b/c I love it and music is my first love. I also know I'm getting a lot of breaks other musicians don't get b/c I'm already famous, but I'm just grateful to be able to get my music out there. I hope you like it."

Oh, and bring your fucking drum kit to the studio.
posted by ornate insect at 8:28 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


You know.... I bet Tom Petty would tell that monster magazine story better.
posted by rokusan at 8:29 PM on April 8, 2009 [5 favorites]


Tom Petty would also write, sing, and perform better.
posted by The World Famous at 8:36 PM on April 8, 2009 [3 favorites]


Ugh. That was like talking to my Dad, who has dementia.

I wish I were kidding.
posted by dhartung at 8:38 PM on April 8, 2009


I'M ON MY FUCKING LUNCH BREAK!!! OK?!!
posted by dirigibleman at 8:51 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


That's the most boring melt down I've ever seen.
posted by PHINC at 8:52 PM on April 8, 2009 [5 favorites]


There are a couple of great moments here. When they cut to each of the members after Jian makes his intro, you can just see the despair in their eyes; they know that BBT is going to act like an ass-clown and they are wishing they were anywhere but there. The other guy who does most of the talking, too; he looks like he's about to cry. I wonder if they would have told BBT to shut the fuck up and act like a professional except they know that his name is their meal ticket.

The other thing that's funny is that his "Would you say that to Tom Petty?" line is completely out of place. You can tell he was planning it from the first time his acting career got mentioned and he throws it out as a response where it doesn't have any of the impact he so desperately wants it to have.

Given that you seem to be quite passionate about your music I want to know who your influences were when you were young.

"Would you say that to Tom Petty?"

Would I tell Tom Petty, professional musician, that he was passionate about music? Would I ask him what the fuck a monster magazine has to do with his musical career? Would I think that my listeners would be interested in knowing what Tom Petty grew up listening to? No, obviously not, that would be fucking insane! I'm so sorry Billy Bob!
posted by Saxon Kane at 9:19 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


And the other thing, Billy Bob, if you're such a music historian and all, you should know that the drummer, fer chrissakes, is s'posed to be the friendly, fun-loving, jovial nice guy of the group.

Doubly ironic, as Jian was the drummer of a fun-loving jovial band who, ten years after their last gig, still get more Google hits than the Boxhamsters. I knew the Fruvous guys slightly in Toronto in the early nineties, and contrary to tighttrousers' experience above, I recall Jian G as a down-to-earth guy. There was one uptight prima donna in the band, but it was not Jian.

And I can totally understand Billy Bob wanting to talk about music rather than acting when he is on the road promoting his band. Still, it's not like the questions were all "So what is it like to work with John Cusack?" If you are not able to answer the question of how long since the band first performed, you are not really ready for an interview.

Hey music historian! If you are not prepared to have your claim to fame even mentioned by way of introduction, please tell us who opened for Willie Nelson on his last tour and how much media coverage they attracted.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 9:20 PM on April 8, 2009


I suspect BBT is a little insecure or paranoid.

"Douchebag" is the greatest term for things that are promoted as good, but are really quite bad. I wouldn't wish a douchebag on any vagina I love: douching is damaging. To call a politician a douchebag is to practically repeat oneself. I wouldn't wish a douchebag semi-famous-person on anyone. Things that are promoted as good, that are actually bad. Douchebags.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:50 PM on April 8, 2009 [2 favorites]


Ghomeshi was asked not to make the guy's acting career part of the interview and he did it anyway, displaying weak, lazy music journalism. Thornton acted unprofessionally as a result. Douchebaggery all around, I'd say.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:59 PM on April 8, 2009 [2 favorites]


Billy Bob Thornton and the Gricean Maxims
posted by roll truck roll at 10:06 PM on April 8, 2009 [2 favorites]


Jian is a really good interviewer. He draws a semi-interesting interview out of Thornton despite Thornton. (I'd say something about having balls the size of hockey pucks, but I think that would be unnecesary.)

In case you didn't listen through to the end: Thornton decides not to perform the scheduled song. Jian successfully invites Thornton's bandmates to play the instrumental version without him.
posted by ~ at 10:08 PM on April 8, 2009



Would you ask Tom Petty that question?


If he was suddenly in a Scorcese movie, I might mention that he has a music career.
posted by saul wright at 10:24 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


No shit. Do you think Sting flips his shit if someone mentioned his singing career in relation to the acting he's done?
posted by P.o.B. at 10:31 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


BP: He didn't make it part of the interview, he made it part of the introduction. As he says to BBT, he was providing context. Not acknowledging at least momentarily would have been lazy. Frankly, the way it seems, BBT wants to have his cake and eat it too. He is the diva of the group who can decide petulantly that he doesn't want to play ball and doesn't want to perform like he's supposed to; hell, he's even sitting apart from the rest of the band. Why? Because he's Billy Bob Thornton, big time actor! But goddamn you if you so much as mention that because no, that has nothing to do with a 2-year old band opening for Willie fucking Nelson.

But anyway, I don't think the interview would have been that thrilling had Jian not said anything about Billy Bob's "other" career. None of them seemed too interesting, and I doubt Mr. Music Historian would have said anything more insightful than "hillbilly music mixed with the Beatles" and "yeah, it's pretty cool opening for Willie Nelson. We have another album coming out later this year."
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:33 PM on April 8, 2009


Also, did anyone else's hackles rise at the way BBT said "instructed"? Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but the use of that word in particular made it seem like he had no use for the DJ as anything more than a silly little minion to be ordered about and used for his own self-aggrandizing purposes. "We instructed you not to mention that. Now you will be punished by... death!"
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:35 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


"We instructed you not to mention that. Now you will be punished by... death!"

See, now that... that would deserve the word "meltdown."
posted by rokusan at 10:41 PM on April 8, 2009


(Only the second use of the tantrum tag? I am disappointed.)
posted by rokusan at 10:41 PM on April 8, 2009


Having watched it finally, two things. One, Jian kept talking. I'd have been too stunned to say anything after that shit. Two, the Tom Petty line. I'd have gone for it. No way would I have gotten out of there without BBT going over the table for my throat.

All Billy Bob had to do was say, to Jian's face, "Let's talk about the music" and not pull that passive-aggressive bullshit. I mean, playing dumb when asked how old the band was. What kind of shit is that?
posted by GuyZero at 10:45 PM on April 8, 2009


Saxon Kane: BP: He didn't make it part of the interview, he made it part of the introduction.

I agree. There's a big difference between making something part of the interview and mentioning something for context in an introduction. Right after the introduction, Jian makes no further mention of acting, instead launching into a series of questions about the band, their music, and who they're touring with (questions which Billy Bob refuses to answer properly, incidentally). It's actually Billy Bob who makes his acting career (well, and his terrible social skills) the focus of the interview.

I wonder if Tom Petty's ears have stopped burning yet.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 10:48 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


The Drummer Who Wasn't There
posted by emelenjr at 11:24 PM on April 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


As for Jian Ghomeshi, he is the first CBC radio personality to actually NOT suck during the daytime since Peter Gzowski.

Jillian Findlay does a good job guest hosting The Current (Although their cutesy 'satirical' voice shtick is stupid and hardly ever amusing, and it's a horrible squandering of Tremonti. At least now I can avoid Shelagh Rogers' yammering, though I suspect her weekend book show is part of the reason why they canceled Talking Books, which, while also often annoying, had the charming and personable Ian Brown).

I've always found Thornton to be an appealing and charismatic - albeit swervy - sort of fellow, and Ghomeshi to be an unctuous and smarmy Brock/Brian Linehan wannabe, so it made for conflicting listening at work today. Now I like Thornton far less, and dislike Ghomeshi slightly less. I still hate that jackass who hosts that stupid The Point, but that's a gripe for an FPP about CBC Radio afternoon programming.

Jian kept talking. I'd have been too stunned to say anything after that shit

I doubt it was much of a hardship, usually the dude doesn't shut up and talks over the guests, only to um, er, ah, every two seconds because his brain can't keep up with his yap.

Yes, I listen to far too fricking much CBC Radio 1, wanna make something out of it?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:34 PM on April 8, 2009


Q is awesome! And, while I'm not sure what I think of Jian Gomeshi as a personality, he is a fantastic interviewer.

Ghomeshi was asked not to make the guy's acting career part of the interview and he did it anyway, displaying weak, lazy music journalism.

So, to you, there is no distinction between interview and introduction?
posted by Chuckles at 11:34 PM on April 8, 2009


So, to you, there is no distinction between interview and introduction?

That's begging the question a little, don't you think?

From what I heard of the interview, Gomeshi was being a bit of a jerk about focusing on Thorton as an actor, clearly trying to be sneaky about the subject. Viewers can see this for themselves, when Thornton catches this and shakes his head even before the interviewer goes in with questions.

I don't know. I don't really care about either of them. But it was clear that Gomeshi was smarmy and sarcastic from the get-go ("are you trying to be iron-ick?") and Thornton didn't respond like a professional entertainer and let himself get trolled by just another self-important media jerk.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:55 PM on April 8, 2009


'Still, he's had knives-and-blood-vials sex with Angelina Jolie and we haven't.'
Astro_Zombie: That's presuming a lot about what I haven't done.


So you're saying it's vial slander?
posted by ooga_booga at 12:03 AM on April 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Alvy Ampersand: Yes, I listen to far too fricking much CBC Radio 1, wanna make something out of it?

Well, I think I must too then. Because I know all the shows and hosts you are talking about and concur with most of your post!

However, although I was originally not crazy about The Point (I miss Richardson's Roundup!), now that its days are numbered I am suddenly enjoying it more. It's funny, there are all kinds of shows that irritate me on CBC One, but as soon as they get cancelled, I become indignant. Weird. Must be a reflex.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:09 AM on April 9, 2009


Well you can listen to the full introduction in the first minute of the video, and Jian goes out of his way to not only place the band first but to say something along the lines that BBT was sidetracked into movies before doing music. Honestly, nobody would know who the hell this band is without BBT and it would be downright weird to strike any and all mention of his acting/directing/screenwriting. Sure Jian could've apologized and moved on, but BB also could've cowboy'd up an just mentioned something about how he doesn't like connecting the two. Out of the two people there I think it's safer to say Billy Bob was a little more out of line than Jian.
posted by P.o.B. at 12:24 AM on April 9, 2009


Somewhat different circumstances, but this is my favourite awkward radio interview.
posted by h00py at 2:17 AM on April 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


"If this really goes sideways - I have new Neil, new Metric standing by."
     -- from the production messaging client on Jian's laptop
posted by NordyneDefenceDynamics at 2:33 AM on April 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


I'm more of a 50 Odd Foot of Grunt fan myself.

Them and Dogstar.
posted by bardic at 3:10 AM on April 9, 2009


Body language seems to indicate that even his own band can't stand him.
posted by srboisvert at 4:32 AM on April 9, 2009


I really miss the fine Canadian Gravy.
posted by srboisvert at 4:45 AM on April 9, 2009


Whatever happened to P?
posted by box at 5:11 AM on April 9, 2009


Body language seems to indicate that even his own band can't stand him.

Well, one thing's for sure, they seemed (very understandably) uncomfortable there in that absurd situation.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:19 AM on April 9, 2009


I found this very confusing. BBT's responses to early, music-oriented questions made him sound crazy: "I don't know what that means." Then suddenly he was objecting to being called-out as an actor, when the host hadn't done that at all, and in fact he was just asking for musical influences. Am I missing something? This was less BBT-is-an-asshole and more BBT-is-on-acid.
posted by anotherpanacea at 5:21 AM on April 9, 2009


Asshole on acid?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:29 AM on April 9, 2009


Ghomeshi was asked not to make the guy's acting career part of the interview

No doubt. Actors do interviews to sell specific products.

and he did it anyway,

True.

displaying weak, lazy music journalism.

I don't think so. Weak, lazy journalism would be letting the subject turn an interview into the reading of a press release for a specific product the subject is pushing.

A good interviewer would at least help out the listener (and, incidentally, help out the band) by anchoring the unknown (this goofy little band and its asshole singer) in the known (he's the same asshole you might have seen acting in Chopper Chicks in Zombietown).
posted by pracowity at 5:58 AM on April 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Tom Petty has a lot more class than "Billy Bob".

Never met Willie Nelson?

Right.

Check this pic of them together!

If Billy was that perturbed he could've just walked
out of the interview and let the interviewer continue
talking with the band.

Instead he tried to sabotage the show.

Real nice guy.
posted by rmmcclay at 6:02 AM on April 9, 2009


"weak, lazy [..] journalism" = Allowing the interviewee to write the interview questions.
posted by applemeat at 6:07 AM on April 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


If I was in as many shitty movies as that guy, I'd be trying to distance myself from them too.
posted by mannequito at 6:13 AM on April 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


This is what happens when a crazy guy from Arkansas lives WAY too long in Los Angeles. He was being a douche-bag. Douche. Bag.
posted by geekhorde at 6:24 AM on April 9, 2009


All Billy Bob had to do was say, to Jian's face, "Let's talk about the music"

Except that would have even seemed weird and contextless because by the time the interview started, that's all Jian was talking about.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 6:28 AM on April 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Hearing it start with his acting resume was probably just the last bit of his frayed-looking nerves exploding.Heck, I've done radio interviews at 6am, too, and I'm only a little less cranky.

With respect, rokusan, that is a wretched comment.

Being cranky & snotty during a media interview is child's play. It's fine if it's done with bizarre style, actually- because that's hard. The interviewee can be playfully surly - or an outrageous wanker, even an entitled diva - and all will be forgiven. But creating awkward dead air is falling off a log territory.

(Mind you, I loved it. And I'm with orange swan - this is an adorably fun thread! I can only parrot Hildegarde too - if only BBT had been thrown: " so to Angelina, then - the sex with her was...?")
posted by Jody Tresidder at 6:43 AM on April 9, 2009


anotherpanacea writes: I found this very confusing. BBT's responses to early, music-oriented questions made him sound crazy: "I don't know what that means."

The smoldering silences and the "I don't knows" were classic passive-aggressive responses. BBT got angry the minute the DJ mentioned his acting career. From that point on, all of his attention was focused on looking for an excuse to continue to be angry. It's called, I think, the "refractive period"-- after someone's temper gets triggered, their brain state changes in a way that actually prevents them from hearing information that might calm them down. In BBT's case, even though the literal content of the DJ's questions was about music, he was highly sensitized to the subtext of the questions, and found something there to make himself even angrier. The "I don't know" answers were his way of saying "I'm not gonna give you anything until you apologize for the horrible thing you just did."

(I can say all this, because I grew up as something of an armchair psychologist. ;-)
posted by otherthings_ at 7:00 AM on April 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Please tell us more about these brain state changes.
posted by solipsophistocracy at 7:09 AM on April 9, 2009


And your childhood. But try to calm down first.
posted by pracowity at 7:18 AM on April 9, 2009


Seems this morning the shoe was on the other foot. (And to his credit he handled it well).

Indeed. BBT out assholed Jian and made Jian appear stand up. I've never seen a single BBT movie or heard his band but this accomplishment is impressive.
posted by juiceCake at 7:29 AM on April 9, 2009


BBT got angry the minute the DJ mentioned his acting career.

Well - yeah, otherthings_

But it's drugs surely - not innocent brain chemistry?

Plus, only the craven - or inexperienced - journalist ever takes publicists' edicts about not pursuing X when interviewing 'celebrity Y' about Z - as gospel.

Sometimes the publicist is over-protective, & sometimes the celebrity is up for anything - despite having laid down advance rules.

When Priscilla Presley was doing those fairly cute cameos in the Naked Gun films years ago, all of us bottom feeding movie hacks were strenuously instructed we'd have our one-on-one interviews terminated without hesitation if we even appeared to be thinking about mentioning anything other than PP's acting career - or her perfume range! (Yawn...) The publicist was actually plausibly sincere - and said that, above all, we had to remember that PP had long ago decided to never, ever talk about Elvis when she was promoting her own movies. I remember thinking - feebly - fair enough!

My first (feeble) question to her was something about "was it embarrassing [in the latest Naked Gun] when you had to dance in the giant condom with Leslie Nielsen..?"

Priscilla actually snickered - and said: "Not nearly as embarrassing as the time Elvis and I were dancing at this party when..." and she was off in great quotable chunks about Elvis, Elvis, Elvis - and more Elvis!
posted by Jody Tresidder at 7:42 AM on April 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


The downside of all of this is going to be hearing a lot more Jian Ghomeshi, who I kind of can't stand. We always have CBC Radio on and I can just sort of endure him at this point. Moxy Fruvous, however, yikes. Horrifying. I still feel embarrassed for them.
That said, he handled it pretty well, I thought.
He was just talking about the whole thing now on his show this morning, which I guess he has to but I'd hoped he'd just move on. Playing Tom Petty's "Don't Do Me Like That" as the outro to the segment was just a bit too look-how-clever-I-am, though.
posted by chococat at 7:57 AM on April 9, 2009


Also: it wasn't 6am when they did the interview. It was 9am. BBT was clearly working on west coast time, where it was 6am, but it wasn't 6am in Toronto.
posted by Hildegarde at 8:03 AM on April 9, 2009


I don't think the interview would have been that thrilling had Jian not said anything about Billy Bob's "other" career. None of them seemed too interesting...

Agreed. I've sat across from folks who were nervous about being on live radio, and this didn't look like that: They just had nothing interesting to say about their music or influences, apart from "We all liked both X and Y, so our music sounds like that." That's a clue. People with nothing to say about their music often have nothing to say with their music.

You FORGOT your instrument?

He didn't forget. He smirked dismissively and said, "No, we don't cart those around at 6 o'clock in the morning."

His whole objection to discussing film is that he doesn't want to be seen (as a musician) as a dilettante. Meanwhile he can't be bothered to carry his instrument to the promotional gig. They knew they would be performing, and his bandmates showed up prepared. But Thornton couldn't be bothered. Maybe he's used to relying on rtoadies for such things, but more importantly, he obviously figured he didn't have to bring his drums. Just showing up for the interview would be enough. And he's right, it would...because he's Billy Bob Thornton, Oscar-winning actor. Try pulling that without a multimillion-dollar film career, and see how many stations return your calls.

I also enjoyed his comment, "We tend to play places where people throw things at each other." Please. Even if he weren't thumbing a ride with Willie Nelson, does anybody believe that Billy Bob Thornton is playing biker bars? Let's check the band's website: House of Blues, Brewster's Ice House, SXSW...theater, civic center, theater, Massey Hall, Jimmy Kimmel Live, and The Bonnie Hunt Show.

Yeah. The Bonnie Hunt Show. Rough crowd, I hear.
posted by cribcage at 8:43 AM on April 9, 2009 [12 favorites]


Perhaps stranger then Billy Bob's tantrum was Ghomeshi's inability to just apologize and move on...
--
He didn't do anything wrong, and I don't think he had anything to apologize for. I certainly wouldn't have apologized. In fact, I would have been tempted to ask for an apology from Billy Bob for his insane assholishness.


I mean a simple apology along the lines "Sorry I meant no offense, we're hear to talk about music and that's what I've been doing, let's move on" variety (there was an agreement in place not to talk acting that everyone was aware of, and it seems the only disagreement was as to whether or not that extended into the intro or not). That's not an excuse for pouty Billy Bob, but it gives one last chance to get back on track and move the interview forward.

And that's why I'm too Emily Post to be an interviewer. I'm no Jian Ghomeshi (as my wife frequently points out) and clearly he handled it well (and got lots of positive buzz out of it too!).

In any event I'm guessing Thornton would not be budged out of his funk by anything, but if Jian had offered the simple apology and is refuted he then becomes fully justified in asking questions about Billy Bob's relationship with Angelina for the rest of the interview.
posted by mazola at 9:06 AM on April 9, 2009


Jian is Canadian. Apologizing is like breathing for Canadians. Canadians will apologize if you step on their feet. He had to actively choose not apologize. Good on him.

He did call for a truce and to move on and BBT agreed and then immediately violated the truce. Which is also a very Canadian experience.
posted by srboisvert at 9:16 AM on April 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Apologizing is like breathing for Canadians. Canadians will apologize if you step on their feet.

Dude, you could say the same about any prison population.
It's because if you don't, random Canadian is likely to kill you where you stand and then smile about it for days.

I can only parrot Hildegarde too - if only BBT had been thrown: " so to Angelina, then - the sex with her was...?")
posted by Jody Tresidder at 6:43 AM on April 9 [+] [!]


Hear hear. This is where the thread should go -- the interview that should have been. I'll start.

Jian: Describe, in single words, only the good things that come into mind about... your acting career.
BBT: My acting career? I'll tell you about my acting career.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:17 AM on April 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Why does "mod-billy" sound like the kind of music gray-haired ponytail guys working at public radio stations would go apeshit over?
posted by Dr-Baa at 11:01 AM on April 9, 2009


I can't even get through the whole thing because I just know the host isn't going to say "Hey, you know what Billy-Bob, the only reason I'm even interviewing you is because you're a big movie star. So if you're determined to pretend that's not that case, you and your hobby-band can get the hell off my show and I'll play music that doesn't suck for the rest of our time. Good luck breaking into the music business, cockbite."

And that makes me so sad.
posted by rusty at 11:20 AM on April 9, 2009


Although he does not give Billy-Bob the boot, he does cover off the star thing:

But it does also occur to me that you are a pretty new band and one of the reasons you get attention is because of the career you had.

...

So even the greatest bands in the world... part of the great success you've had is because of the career you've had in other ways.

He may not kick Thorton out, but he does not back down, either.
posted by Bovine Love at 11:42 AM on April 9, 2009


This is just about the creepiest thing I've ever seen.
posted by katillathehun at 12:48 PM on April 9, 2009


BB Thornton: Canadian audiences tend to be kind of reserved . . . . Here they just sort of sit there. And it doesn't matter what you say to them."

Weird, I don't remember that ever being the case at any of the Moxy Fruvous concerts I went been to*.

God how I miss Moxy Fruvous. I go to their solo concerts and have their solo-CDs and I see Murray at Great Big Sea Concerts, but it's not the same.

* Ok, not true. I went to one Fruvous concert in Viriginia where everyone was sitting. But that was a terrible venue, a dinner theatre with these loooong tables (Birchwood? Birchmere? Something like that) And anyway, it wasn't a Canadian audience so it doesn't really speak to the issue at hand.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 2:34 PM on April 9, 2009


Dude, his guitar player is Unknown Hinson!

Also: What an insufferable douche. Although that's unfair, as douches serve a valuable purpose.
posted by jbickers at 2:39 PM on April 9, 2009


Although that's unfair, as douches serve a valuable purpose.

Actually, doctors say they're unhealthy for women. So, I'd say that's fair.
posted by katillathehun at 2:58 PM on April 9, 2009


Well that douche sure looked unhealthy. I didn't need a doctor to tell me that.

I'm rather interested in hearing from some of those who've expressed hatred/dislike/embarrassment towards Moxy Fruvous. I don't want to start anything and I know tastes differ but I'm curious as to what it is about them that rubs you the wrong way.

And I'm guessing you don't like TMBG either, huh?
posted by ooga_booga at 3:19 PM on April 9, 2009


"You can’t not be famous once you are. Once you’ve screwed a bunch of pretty girls and won an Academy Award, you’re screwed," complains Billy Bob.
posted by madamjujujive at 4:48 PM on April 9, 2009


I just wanna know how the rest of the tour in Canada goes for them.
posted by DonnieSticks at 4:48 PM on April 9, 2009


Well if it was a publicity stunt it failed miserably for me - I'll never give them the time or bother of a listen. What an asshat.
posted by homeless Visigoth at 4:56 PM on April 9, 2009


@smeurice livetweeted BBT's opening act in Toronto tonight. Sounds like it wasn't as dramatic as it could have been, but there was booing.
posted by Hildegarde at 4:59 PM on April 9, 2009


Keep in mind this is a guy with OCD, and he's been married five times. Probably not the most agreeable fellow in daily conversations.
posted by P.o.B. at 7:08 PM on April 9, 2009


Why does "mod-billy" sound like the kind of music gray-haired ponytail guys working at public radio stations would go apeshit over?

Isn't modbilly what cortex plays?
posted by lukemeister at 7:25 PM on April 9, 2009


Billy Bob Thornton draws boos, tosses barbs at T.O. gig
posted by oaf at 7:53 PM on April 9, 2009


Heck, I've done radio interviews at 6am, too, and I'm only a little less cranky.

With respect, rokusan, that is a wretched comment.


Bah. Dude can have a bad day, same as anyone. He can even be an asshole. Doesn't seem like a very big deal to me, that's all. Like, that can't be the toughest interview Jian's ever had, but it's sure making him famous internationally, now. If Senor Slingblade wasn''t such a celebrity, and was just some unknown local musician being pissy in an interview, he could have acted the same stupid way, it would have been weird, but we wouldn't all be talking about it. So it's the public big-dealification that I guess turns me off.

Or maybe I was disappointed because I was anticipating a more diva-like breakdown, instead of passive-aggressive, hungover surliness. Or maybe I have a soft spot for assholes.

Yeah, probably that.
posted by rokusan at 10:50 PM on April 9, 2009


Billy Bob Thornton Interviews Joaquin Phoenix
posted by nola at 5:43 AM on April 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


Billy Bob Thornton Interviews Joaquin Phoenix

Hot damn, nola, you are on the case! That thing's got a grand total of 95 views as of right now. Mefi gets you there FIRST!

It's pretty good, too. I'll tell you though, the more I think about both of these guys, the more I think they might just be, well, mentally ill, you know? So, I'm a little conflicted on these parodies, I think. They might actually be incredibly cruel...
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:01 AM on April 10, 2009


Wow. So here we have people who aren't actors, trying to become famous by parodying actors, performing a meta-parody of an interview that itself was pretty much a parody of what interviews should be.

I think that like the derivatives-of-derivatives market, this is going to prove too much of a good thing and will collapse in upon itself.

With any luck, though, instead of taking out Wall Street, this one will take out Hollywood Boulevard.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:41 AM on April 10, 2009


Billy Bob Thornton Interviews Joaquin Phoenix

Great, but it's a real shame they didn't use the "Would you say that to Tom Petty?" line.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 8:43 AM on April 10, 2009


Y'know, I try to imagine Bruce Willis throwing the same "serious" bullshit and it just doesn't happen. I didn't think I'd have more respect for Bruce Willis's music career than I do Billy Bob Thornton's, but there you have it.
posted by not_on_display at 10:58 AM on April 10, 2009


Shit, I've got more respect for Patrick Swayze's music career than I do Billy Bob Thornton's.
posted by box at 12:31 PM on April 10, 2009


Billy Bob apologizes.
posted by CCBC at 1:38 PM on April 10, 2009


There's something kind of wrong about that news story. It disregards how childish Billy Bob acted during the interview, and instead puts the focus on the much-cooler sin of saying Canada sucks.
posted by roll truck roll at 1:42 PM on April 10, 2009


Willie Nelson's website is reporting that the Boxmasters will not be playing with Willie Nelson and Ray Price for the rest of the Canadian tour. "Unfortunately, The Boxmasters had to cancel the remainder of the Canadian dates with Willie Nelson and Ray Price, including Montreal and London, due to one band member and several of the crew having the flu."
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 6:26 PM on April 10, 2009


the Boxmasters will not be playing with Willie Nelson and Ray Price for the rest of the Canadian tour.

And he's OUTTA HERE!!!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:10 PM on April 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


As linked from Willie Nelson's website:
In Defense of Billy Bob Thornton: When Context Isn't Truly Context

As BBT says:
"I sat down and talked with this guy. He and his producers say, `We promise you we won't say that' (meaning references to Thornton's acting career). The very first thing they said was that.

I don't really like sensationalism. If you look someone in the eyes and promise them something, and you don't do it, you don't get the interview. That's the way it goes."


Basically, he wanted to focus on The Boxmasters and their music, and Ghomeshi wanted to focus on celebrity.

Ghomeshi, in follow up comments:
"You just don't get the kind of national press they are getting without the incentive being something like his career past.... And I think if he could graciously accept that and say, `Hey, I want to focus on the music, but I get that the reason we're here is because I'm a movie star that's won an Oscar.'

Why should BBT have to say that, especially when the producer said -- and Ghomeshi agreed -- that there wouldn't be questions about BBT's acting career?

Let's face it... Jian Ghomeshi wouldn't have gotten his job with the CBC if he weren't a well-known musician in his country. How many times has he *EVER* been put on the spot by his fellow CBC'ers to admit that?!
posted by markkraft at 2:26 PM on April 11, 2009


Ghomeshi wanted to focus on celebrity.
Ghomeshi agreed...that there wouldn't be questions about BBT's acting career


Didn't bother to watch the interview before commenting, did you?

Ghomeshi didn't "focus on celebrity," and he didn't ask any questions about Thornton's acting career. His first question (directed at the whole group) was about the band having released three albums in the last year—a pretty natural question, I'd say, for any band showing that kind of prolificacy. Then he turned to Thornton directly and asked about the band having formed "in the last couple of years"—also a natural step: If you're recording an album every four months, I'd be curious whether it's burgeoning material or whether they've been sitting on this stuff for a decade. These are music-related questions, and fairly predictable ones.

While Thornton continued to stonewall, Ghomeshi asked him about touring with Willie Nelson and about what music he listened to as a kid. And that's when Thornton eventually snapped and they got into it. Up to that point, there wasn't a single question about acting, film, Hollywood, Angelina, or Armageddon. More to the point, there wasn't a single question that wouldn't have been asked of any other (unknown) band doing a routine promo. If Thornton wanted the Boxmasters to be treated as a band independent of his prior career, that's exactly what he was getting.

The only deviation was during the intro. As Ghomeshi says, he was giving context. Most people have no idea that Billy Bob Thornton has a band, and it would be absurd for an interviewer to launch into, "You're listening to an interview with the Boxmasters, respectively Danny Baker, Billy Bob Thornton, J.D. Andrew, and Mike Butler," without any mention whatsoever that yes, this is that Billy Bob Thornton.

Just, y'know...FYI. "RTFA," etc. Although thanks for posting Markel's column. I got a kick out of his rebuttal to that last point. He argues that the acting context was unnecessary because the interview was about music; but then he protests that ground rules aren't unreasonable or dishonest because they're standard for actors doing interviews. That was worth a laugh.
posted by cribcage at 7:46 PM on April 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


No, I did watch the interview, and I understand where BBT is coming from. A lot of Ghomeshi's behavior does seem a bit like he was trying to push the interview towards his quote, so to speak... that of getting BBT to say "Well, yeah, I'm an actor, and I the only reason I'm getting attention is because..."

I thought the way Ghomeshi handled the multiple albums issue was poor, and kind of snarky.

"Three albums? In the last *year*??! *chuckle*"

Yeah. Three albums in a year, based on the fact that BBT, who writes the music, has written songs for years, and is very serious about music.

Really, what it comes down to is that Ghomeshi had a prepared introduction he was reading off of which basically contradicted the instructions he was given by the producer of the show. It wasn't *just* that they were told not to mention he was an actor, but also that they weren't supposed to do the whole "music was his first love" thing, as mentioned in the interview. Indeed, the request regarding not mentioning his acting career was secondary, if you pay attention to the interview.
posted by markkraft at 8:18 AM on April 12, 2009


So we all know that Ghomeshi was not given any "instructions," right? This has been confirmed by BBT's publicist (linked upthread).

"Three albums? In the last *year*??! *chuckle*"

Yes, it's something to smile at, because it's way more proficient than most new bands. And he only said the "first love" thing after BBT simply refused to talk about music.

I really can't think of any reason to give BBT such a huge amount of benefit-of-the-doubt. Except, you know, because he's famous.
posted by roll truck roll at 9:49 AM on April 12, 2009


"No, I did watch the interview, and I understand where BBT is coming from."

Are you Billy Bob Thornton? I think that's the only reason you'd think that way.
posted by y6y6y6 at 11:26 AM on April 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Three albums? In the last *year*??! *chuckle*"

Yeah. Three albums in a year, based on the fact that BBT, who writes the music, has written songs for years, and is very serious about music.


Did you miss the part where they pointed out that a large percentage of the material is covers?
posted by 5imian at 4:18 PM on April 13, 2009


Just in case anyone is still convinced that Thornton isn't trading on his fame as an actor in this particular scenario.
posted by tantrumthecat at 10:35 PM on April 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


rolltruckroll:
That's the first time I ever heard of Gricean maxims. What an informative and educational place this is!

I seldom use the word "douchebag" but I think it perfectly suited to Mr. Bob.

Also, in Canada, the preferred recipe for potatoes and gravy is not mashed, but poutine.
posted by CCBC at 2:55 PM on April 14, 2009


Jeremy Fisher steps in as translator for Billy Bob Thornton on the CBC radio program "Q" with Jian Ghomeshi and it all goes terribly wrong.
posted by Sailormom at 10:53 AM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


« Older Disney made one movie, and they've been tracing it...  |  One-flipper turtle gets Ninja ... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments