Billy Ray speaks.
February 15, 2011 8:09 PM   Subscribe

 
What a load of bovine excretement.
posted by wv kay in ga at 8:11 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Maybe with a real broken heart some actual country songs might get written. First, though, the insipid self-pity needs to go.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:21 PM on February 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


I read the full article earlier today, and was unexpectedly moved... although much of that is probably more due to the writer's framing of the interview than the interview itself. The one time I divorced his words from their framing - reading the poem he claims to have written after Kurt Cobain died - I remember thinking that he should have used the Achy Breaky Heart money to hire a full-time ghostwriter.
posted by The Confessor at 8:22 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


The song is now in my head. Get it out. GET IT OUT.
posted by Taft at 8:24 PM on February 15, 2011 [9 favorites]


Into her womb convey sterility!
Dry up in her the organs of increase;
And from her derogate body never spring
A babe to honour her! If she must teem,
Create her child of spleen; that it may live,
And be a thwart disnatured torment to her!
Let it stamp wrinkles in her brow of youth;
With cadent tears fret channels in her cheeks;
Turn all her mother's pains and benefits
To laughter and contempt; that she may feel
How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is
To have a thankless child! Away, away!
posted by jenkinsEar at 8:26 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


An unexpectedly sympathetic portrait. I think that a lot of people really can't imagine that Cyrus is much different from the person that they interpret him as epitomizing--kind of the trailer-park version of a brah--but I can completely believe that he and Kurt Cobain had a mutual sympathy; Kurt certainly had no love for what people considered cool. And I have a great deal of respect for someone who wasn't content to giggle along with everyone else at the eventually-fatal trainwreck of Anna Nicole Smith's life. Not that that changes the fact that he churned out a lot of shitty music, but still.
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:27 PM on February 15, 2011 [11 favorites]


Taft

[EVIL]this should help[/EVIL]
posted by The Confessor at 8:27 PM on February 15, 2011


I struggle to care. Struggle mightily.
posted by phaedon at 8:29 PM on February 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


Billy Ray Cyrus has problems? Everyone has problems.
posted by Daddy-O at 8:31 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


I think he started to get it when he said he tried too hard to be his kid's friend instead of her dad, but then he started talking about how it was everyone else's fault. And that he believes Satan is attacking his family.
posted by ShawnStruck at 8:34 PM on February 15, 2011 [13 favorites]


Billy Ray didn't place all the blame on those currently in Miley's life. There are also evil forces at work, he claimed.

"Somewhere along this journey, both mine and Miley's faith has been shaken," he said. "That saddens me the most."

His family, Billy Ray argued, is now being ruined by Satan.

"No doubt," he insisted. "There's no doubt about it."
posted by Joe Beese at 8:34 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Even if he hasn't made a dime (and speaking of dimes, how great was that Michael Jackson anecdote?) off his daughter, it sounds to me like he should have been in a good position to know that show business is a hideous bitch goddess before she got into this mess.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:35 PM on February 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


Obligatory Bill Hicks
posted by empath at 8:36 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


So I guess the Mefites tired of insulting Tina Fey will come in her to be predictably unsympathetic.
posted by oddman at 8:36 PM on February 15, 2011 [6 favorites]


My favourite part was when God spoke to him at the Neil Diamond concert and told him to learn guitar.
posted by chococat at 8:36 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


for a moment I imagine there really might be an alternative reality in which Billy Ray Cyrus is cursed to communicate every thought, however deep or shallow, in pairs of rhyming adjectives.
posted by Judith Butlerian Jihad at 8:39 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Side note: "the Crownsman Quartet" is possibly the perfect name for a steel mill gospel group.
posted by Iridic at 8:39 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


So I guess the Mefites tired of insulting Tina Fey will come in her to be predictably unsympathetic.

i think her insecurity thing is part of her act; i doubt she would actually debase herself like this.
posted by fallacy of the beard at 8:41 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Billy Ray doesn't have problems. He has a daughter who Disney sees as merchandise, whose life may be spinning out of control. Who else has this described:

Lindsay Lohan, who now has as much of a career going in and out of rehab for repeated DUIs as she does a film career.

Britney Spears, whose public meltdowns have become so common they aren't even news anymore.

Tommy Kirk, who emerged from his Disney career with a drug habit that he didn't quit until he left show business and started a carpet cleaning business.

Bobby Driscoll, whose body was found in an abandoned NY tenement, dead of long-term drug abuse and unidentifiable. He was 31.

That's a short list. He may be a simple man, and he may be a religious fanatic, but we shouldn't mock him for worrying about his daughter.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:44 PM on February 15, 2011 [60 favorites]


The article is trying hard to paint him as a sympathetic character and I almost got fooled until I got to page 5 where he tells a story about seeing an Atheist United adopt-a-highway sign and saying that, "It could have easily said 'You will now be attacked by Satan.' 'Entering this industry, you are now on the highway to darkness..."
posted by MegoSteve at 8:45 PM on February 15, 2011 [11 favorites]


So, at 18, she likes beer, and bongs, and her parents out of her business? Isn't that pretty damn normal?
posted by tyllwin at 8:46 PM on February 15, 2011 [12 favorites]


His family, Billy Ray argued, is now being ruined by Satan.

"No doubt," he insisted. "There's no doubt about it."


This dude is channeling my grandma.
posted by IvoShandor at 8:47 PM on February 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


who emerged from his Disney career with a drug habit that he didn't quit until he left show business and started a carpet cleaning business.

Cocaine's a hell of a drug.
posted by phaedon at 8:50 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


So he never made a dime out of his daughter, except the $15,000/ep he pulls in from the TV show.

Now, seriously, that's peanuts and he needs to get a better agent, but he definitely has the faux-naif-victimology of Hi from RAISING ARIZONA going on here.

Basically, it's the same loser talk you'll hear from guys like Billy all over town. It was all somebody else's fault -- a combination of Satan, his ex-wife, and that cop who had it in for him. Man, I'm tired of it. Sad about growing apart from his daughter, but I suspect he's not exactly the greatest influence in her life.
posted by unSane at 8:52 PM on February 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


He sounds no more or less dippy than many other people who have good qualities and bad qualities. Dumping on him because he's religious or because you don't like his music or because he has the audacity to be wealthy seems unfair. I think many people would jump at the chance to have a song be as popular as "Achy Breaky Heart" was, just as many people would jump at the chance to have a bit part in a David Lynch movie and to have a daughter who's a paper billionaire.

The sad part is that none of those things will necessarily make you any happier in the long run, especially without family and without the sense that you're living out your own values. Laugh all you like, but it's clear that his faith and his values are very important to him, perhaps all the more so because he knows he has made mistakes in the past - I mean, hell, Miley's conception was the result of a Micki and Maude situation.

I don't blame him for worrying about his daughter. I wouldn't freak out too much over a teenager drinking a Corona or trying pot, but as AZ points out, there are truly tragic stories that come out of the Disney machine. He doesn't need to apologize for worrying about his daughter.

He really does seem like an average joe who feels that he's living out a Faustian bargain. The fact that he focuses so much on self-pity just adds to his humanity. I also didn't get the sense that he was solely blaming others for his problems, or at least no more so than most people. He's just a dude with problems.

(The article also has a bizarrely condescending bit where the author seems impressed that Billy Ray Cyrus is canny enough to recognize who David Lynch is and what referencing him implies. How dumb do you think he is? Why is that of note? Painting him as a total rube gives me flashbacks to The Redneck Manifesto.)
posted by Sticherbeast at 8:55 PM on February 15, 2011 [26 favorites]


I thought it was a great, candid article. I've got an 18 year old daughter, and I can understand his angst. Letting them fledge, while still being there as a dad is difficult. When you've spent 18 years acting as the protector of a little girl, (I'm sure he's second-guessing himself about how well he did that, and maybe he aughtta) it's pretty damn hard to just turn it off and let them fly, one day. Besides, it's not the right thing to just let them go completely. Sure, an 18 year old is legally an adult, but there's still a lot of kid there that needs guidance, and support at that age. Even adult women need their dads, I think.

You look at Lindsey Lohan, or Paris Hilton, or Britney Spears, or the Olsen twins, and I'm sure he's worried sick about his kid. He's got good reason to be. I hope she comes out okay, really.
posted by Devils Rancher at 8:55 PM on February 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


Now, seriously, that's peanuts and he needs to get a better agent, but he definitely has the faux-naif-victimology of Hi from RAISING ARIZONA going on here.

With that lowball figure, it sounds like he really is a naif, nothing faux about it.
posted by Sticherbeast at 8:57 PM on February 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


Don't touch my prostate, my achey breaky prostate.
posted by I love you more when I eat paint chips at 9:00 PM on February 15, 2011


Why would Billy Ray Cyrus not know who David Lynch is? Cyrus was in Mulholland Drive. Which, well, Mr. Lynch directed. Which is also one of the best movies ever made, but that's beside the point.
posted by xmutex at 9:04 PM on February 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


So I guess the Mefites tired of insulting Tina Fey will come in her to be predictably unsympathetic.

Oh, oddman. You are so in need of an e..
posted by Ahab at 9:10 PM on February 15, 2011 [13 favorites]


In the spring of 1992, as "Achy Breaky Heart" exploded, two women were pregnant with his children.

That is some potent heart. Were they in the front row?
posted by the_artificer at 9:19 PM on February 15, 2011 [7 favorites]


I'm gonna document the shit outta this.
posted by not_on_display at 9:27 PM on February 15, 2011


Oh, oddman. You are so in need of an e..

The stars truly aligned for that typo.
posted by Taft at 9:27 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


I worked at a horse farm when Achy Breaky Heart came out. The proprietor, a five foot box of nails labeled "Becky", spit every time it came on the radio. One day while mucking a stall with her she spit again when it started up.

"What's wrong? Don't like Billy Ray?"

"Huh."

"Why, what is it?"

"Cowboys don't wear sneakers. And they sure as shit have lived a life before they start bitching about one."
posted by notion at 9:33 PM on February 15, 2011 [12 favorites]


I just read a six page article about a guy who has happily/begrudgingly/repeatedly taken bullets(!) for his daughter's career via a series of calculated mini-scandals and oh my god he's so worried about her, everything's falling apart, blah blah end times drama.

I feel like a sucker for reading that shit.
posted by The Hamms Bear at 9:36 PM on February 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


And can everyone just shut the fuck up about the thirty seconds they crossed paths with Kurt Cobain already?
posted by The Hamms Bear at 9:37 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Let's Hunt and Kill Billy Ray Cyrus

Each week we let the Hounds of Hell loose and chase that jarhead, no-talent, cracker idiot all over the globe ’till I finally catch that fruity little ponytail of his, pull him to his Chippendale’s knees, put a shotgun in his mouth — POW!

If only Letterman had been willing to allow that Bill Hicks routine onto the air back in 1993, the show might have gone forward as planned and all of this could have been avoided.
posted by twoleftfeet at 9:37 PM on February 15, 2011


I too wish to know why Michael Jackson had a dime.
posted by unliteral at 9:43 PM on February 15, 2011


I see a man, whose beliefs differ greatly from mine, who is re-evaluating the choices he made over the last five years or so as he sees his daughter get into trouble that she can't control.

But I also see a man who's not ready to take responsibility for the fact that those were his own choices, nor the fact that his daughter seems to be (and I never fucking thought I'd say these words about Miley Cyrus) perfectly capable of knowing what she's doing and handling herself.

I completely believe that he would be happier had he never taken the part in Mulholland Dr., leading to all of this. He would be happier. But I also presume that his daughter is pretty happy with the way things are, and his ex-wife as well, having learned the man he can truly be and getting away from it.

And those are the two people in this narrative for whom not having their lives be under the direct control of Billy Ray Cyrus equals an attack by Satan.

I choose to prefer their accounts of the state of things.
posted by Navelgazer at 9:46 PM on February 15, 2011 [5 favorites]


Well, I certainly like Billy Ray Cyrus better than Bill Hicks.

I also find it interesting that when we're talking about a famous person, taking a few hits off a bong somehow becomes equivalent to a serious, debilitating drug habit.
posted by drjimmy11 at 9:46 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


After reading the article all I want to do is eat Taco Bell, followed by some Lucky Charms, Corn Pops, and once finished, wash it all down with a can of Red Bull.
posted by Bron-Y-Aur at 9:46 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


And wow, that's enough superfluous name-dropping to embarrass David Allan Coe.
posted by drjimmy11 at 9:54 PM on February 15, 2011


Billy Ray Cyrus sounds like a pretty decent guy who loves his daughter. He seems a bit oversensitive and wallows in self-pity, but then so do I.

He makes terrible music, though. I can enjoy Roman Polanski's films and Orson Scott Card's books even though I dislike the individual, but in Cyrus' case the inverse is true.
posted by zardoz at 10:02 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


When I first arrive he makes me a cup of tea in the microwave

Well, at least we know one of the sources of his problems.
posted by Ghidorah at 10:16 PM on February 15, 2011


Now I want to line dance
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 10:27 PM on February 15, 2011


"Somewhere along this journey, both mine and Miley's faith has been shaken," he said.

but I! I gotta be STRONG! JUSSSST to carry ONNNNNNNNNN!

what, you guys don't know that song? it was in the hannah montana movie.
posted by liketitanic at 10:39 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Oh, the wealthy Dreck stars have such tough lives, boo-fucking-hoo.

And drjimmy11, Bill Hicks says you should kiss his decomposing ass.
posted by dbiedny at 11:07 PM on February 15, 2011


How did I miss that segment about Satan having it in for him? That would have certainly spun the article in a different way than I read it.

As a father who loves his daughter more than anything, I can sympathize. Its obvious from this article that she means much more to him than money or cars or wealth or fame. He wants her to be happy and successful and she is; I think he is just starting to realize the cost at which the success and fame arrived.

I get from the article that he is a sentimental old fool who is at a point in his life where he is evaluating his relationship with his family. Im sure we will all (mostly) be there at some point and I appreicate the candidness in this interview.
posted by subaruwrx at 11:14 PM on February 15, 2011


Achey Breaky Heart isn't that bad a song
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 11:52 PM on February 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


I've never met anyone who WASN'T full of self pity at some point during his divorce. I liked the article, it was well written.
posted by Omnomnom at 11:57 PM on February 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


I thought this was a compelling article, although I was put off by the condescending tone of the writer.

Also a bit surprised, although perhaps I shouldn't be, that so many otherwise intelligent and thoughtful members of the Metafilter userbase are dismissive of Cyrus' concerns about his daughter because:

A) He's wealthy
B) He's put out some shitty music over the years
C) He's religious
D) He thinks there may be external factors, beyond his own deficits as a parent, that may have caused his daughters behavior to go off the rails
posted by The Gooch at 12:31 AM on February 16, 2011


'the Devil and David Lynch' needs to be a movie/song/TV show/something
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 12:46 AM on February 16, 2011


Each week we let the Hounds of Hell loose and chase that jarhead, no-talent, cracker idiot all over the globe ’till I finally catch that fruity little ponytail of his, pull him to his Chippendale’s knees, put a shotgun in his mouth — POW!

Not a Billy Ray Cyrus fan at all, and I love me some BH, but I couldn't help but think that Bill was channelling those two hillbillies from Deliverance when he wrote that bit.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 1:04 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


Wow, tough crowd. A parent makes mistakes, realizes that they hurt his family, and has regrets and ongoing fears for the safety of his child. Any parent can imagine how awful that must feel.
posted by jbickers at 2:56 AM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


I just read a six page article about a guy who has happily/begrudgingly/repeatedly taken bullets(!) for his daughter's career via a series of calculated mini-scandals and oh my god he's so worried about her, everything's falling apart, blah blah end times drama.

Wonder who took the bullet for this? Satan?
posted by fuse theorem at 3:11 AM on February 16, 2011


oddman : So I guess the Mefites tired of insulting Tina Fey will come in her to be predictably unsympathetic.

Hey, good call!

A sincere lack of sympathy just works that way. So Billy C has a teenage daughter, doing normal teenage daughter things - Oh, but with the perk of having millions of dollars from her efforts thus far, ensuring that unless she pulls a typical Disney Chick spinout, she'll never have to worry about any of the mere material aspects of life. Cue the violins.

So she tried to get high... Did you magically skip your teens and 20s, Mr. Cyrus?


jbickers : Wow, tough crowd. A parent makes mistakes, realizes that they hurt his family, and has regrets and ongoing fears for the safety of his child.

Then you've missed the point. Other than letting Disney exploit his princess (though to mutual gain), he's done nothing "wrong" except thinking GQ wants to hear him whine about his kid's normal behavior.


Though I think Billy Ray has nicely trolled the world, here. "Worried" about his now-rich daughter trying drugs? Yeah, and Willie Nelson really felt awful the first time Lana burned the hash brownies. If only, IF ONLY someone had shown these kids how to smoke up the right way! ;)
posted by pla at 3:39 AM on February 16, 2011


What? Nothing about his younger daughter, Noah? Wait til Disney snaps her up and regurgitates her, a la Jamie Lynn Spears.
posted by malibustacey9999 at 3:55 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm sure airing his dirty linen in public will really help his daughter listen to him. Jesus fuck!
posted by By The Grace of God at 3:55 AM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


So I guess the Mefites tired of insulting Tina Fey will come in her to be predictably unsympathetic.

I'm just here because someone told me there would be free snacks.

I'm not really unsympathetic, but I'm getting concerned about the snacks.
posted by krinklyfig at 3:58 AM on February 16, 2011


You know I came in ready to snark about how I couldn't care less, and actually after reading that I'm surprised at everyone who is saying that. Maybe it's because I've experienced a broken home or maybe it's because yes, Cyrus is a famous celebrity and that makes people interested in hearing what he has to say, but nevertheless at least he's being open about how he feels about a personal issue, and that's more than I can get out of friends I talk to on a daily basis. Yeah he might be overdoing it about a less-than-grandiose issue but I can't get a friend who keeps showing up with new scars on his arm to talk to me about it let alone seek professional help so yeah, kudos for at least being a guy brave enough to admit he has feelings.

Also, I would rather listen to a family member getting dental work than any of (either) Cyrus' songs but I absolutely love that article photo.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:05 AM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


Then you've missed the point. Other than letting Disney exploit his princess (though to mutual gain), he's done nothing "wrong" except thinking GQ wants to hear him whine about his kid's normal behavior.

No, you've missed mine, because I'm not talking about the specifics of the Cyrus family, which are obviously rarified and not the kind of things normal people ever have to deal with. I'm talking about the stuff in this horror show that regular parents look at and shudder because it makes us think about things we will deal with or are dealing with, like wishing you could protect your child from ever trying drugs but knowing that they will someday as part of growing up.

I'm a big strong man, but I can't listen to "Ready, set, don't go" without tearing up, not because it's a good song but because it's targeted right at one of my parental sore spots. There's a lot more here than just, "Hey, let's point and laugh at the whiny rich guy."
posted by jbickers at 4:14 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


So Billy C has a teenage daughter, doing normal teenage daughter things

I can imagine a lot of her peers are going to take advantage of her or try to. She's got more money than most teens, and she's a little more susceptible to getting involved with shady people and harder drugs than the average teen who has to ask for money from parents who think $100 is a lot of money for a tee shirt. She has loads of money, and if someone wants to sell her drugs that are impure to make a quick pile of money, or become her regular dealer for a steady income, then there are plenty of folks that might be up for that.

I'm not a fan of his music, but I feel sorry for the guy. He misses his family. He has regrets. He feels bad. He's trying to make some sense out of what he's feeling inside. That's great.

He could have easily gotten angry and blamed it all on his ex-wife, like "Well, good riddance to my bitch ex-wife, she's probably going to take me for everything I earned!" That's how a fair number of divorced men and women seem to communicate their post-filing sadness, mainly in anger and uncontrollable fury. So I respect this guy for trying to figure out how, with anybody that will listen I guess, to be better somehow.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that he's come a long way from the guy who impregnated two women at once (or at least I hope he has). He seems to be asking for help,and that's a good thing. Maybe if Lohan's parents hadn't spent so much time lying for her and lying to themselves about her having problems, then she wouldn't be such a horrible mess right now.
posted by anniecat at 4:23 AM on February 16, 2011


MetaFilter: a five foot box of nails labeled "Becky"
posted by Splunge at 4:42 AM on February 16, 2011 [3 favorites]


ADOPT-A-HIGHWAY
ATHEISTS UNITED

..."She said, 'We're going to be under attack, and we have to be strong in our faith and we're all going to be baptized...'" And there, driving to work each day in the City of Angels, was this sign. "A physical sign. It could have easily said 'You will now be attacked by Satan.' 'Entering this industry, you are now on the highway to darkness...'"


You know, it never fails to remind me how right I am not to give a second's attention to religious people whining about how "disrespectful" I am to their beliefs when I read something as grotesquely insulting as this, tossed off so casually, as if Cyrus were just telling us about a tree or a bird he'd seen. No dude, you just said I and all of my friends are agents of Satan. So hey, fuck you and your stupid superstitious bullshit, and fuck any chance of me respecting it, or you. Ass.
posted by Decani at 4:42 AM on February 16, 2011 [41 favorites]


"... Billy Ray Cyrus is cursed to communicate every thought, however deep or shallow, in pairs of rhyming adjectives."

Such is his way. His willful, skillful way. His showy, doughy way. His reckless, feckless way. His wily, smiley way. His broken spoken way.
posted by kyrademon at 4:47 AM on February 16, 2011 [25 favorites]


Am I the only one who was previously unaware that Miley Cyrus was related to Billy Ray Cyrus?
posted by DU at 5:10 AM on February 16, 2011


The article also has a bizarrely condescending bit where the author seems impressed that Billy Ray Cyrus is canny enough to recognize who David Lynch is and what referencing him implies.

Yeah, how would he know who David Lynch is OH WAIT
posted by louche mustachio at 5:12 AM on February 16, 2011


So hey, fuck you and your stupid superstitious bullshit, and fuck any chance of me respecting it, or you. Ass.

Is Billy Ray your real dad?
posted by anniecat at 5:15 AM on February 16, 2011


Oh god, sorry, Decani. I got all confused. I think I broke my keyboard scrolly thing....
posted by anniecat at 5:16 AM on February 16, 2011


So Billy C has a teenage daughter, doing normal teenage daughter things

I'm less concerned about a bong hit and a pole dance than I am about the fact that evidentally Disney has an entire system in place for damage control, including roping the father in to suggest that it was all done with parental control.

I lived in Hollywood, I knew child stars. It can be a toxic enough environment for an adult when you have money and fame -- at every single club, people follow you into the bathroom, offering coke, and fellow actors with really self-destructive habits invite you into their trailer all the time. And that's one thing. It's another to work for a studio that seems to tacitly give permission for this sort of behavior, as they're always there to cover it up when it becomes public. This combination seems fatal to me. Perhaps young miss Cyrus is just a teenager, making a few entirely harmless teenager mistakes. But, were I here father, I'd be scraed as hell that I was just seeing the tip of the iceberg.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:29 AM on February 16, 2011 [8 favorites]


He scored points with me for mentioning the "Missouri Compromise" as a mullet name.
posted by EatTheWeak at 5:31 AM on February 16, 2011 [7 favorites]


All rising teen actresses must, required by law, have a poster of Lindsay Lohan above their beds. The poster not only depicts a Then And Now version of Mean Girls-era Lohan vs "Holy Crap Is She 45?" mugshot-era Lohan, but also their relative incomes.

While I'm sure Miley Cyrus, Emma Stone, or Dakota Fanning will get tired of the poster of the years, it will hopefully keep them from becoming (too much) of a national punchline.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 5:44 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


I have sympathy for a normal parent's concerns. But my sympathy declines when aforementioned parent signs their kid up to the Disney factory, that road is well trodden, and already being in the business means he knew the possible consequences.
Hope Miley makes it through ok.
posted by arcticseal at 6:06 AM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


His family, Billy Ray argued, is now being ruined by Satan.

Now I get it! All those depictions of Satan with a goatee were meant to be literal!
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 6:08 AM on February 16, 2011


I'm not sure every misadventure of Miley Cyrus has been documented in the media. I'm pretty certain that Billy has seen some things that we haven't, knows some stuff that he doesn't want to slander his daughter with.

I think that what's troubling him might well be more than what we know about him, her, and their relationship. And as many people here have noted before, often in these scenarios, these things spiral way out of control.
posted by svenni at 6:49 AM on February 16, 2011


So, at 18, she likes beer, and bongs, and her parents out of her business? Isn't that pretty damn normal?

So Billy C has a teenage daughter, doing normal teenage daughter things


Normal teenage girls don't have millions of dollars, an entourage of enabling hangers-on, and a staff that will clean up their messes. I feel bad for Billy-Ray, I really do. Maybe he should've known that this would happen, but I suppose everyone thinks they're different.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:06 AM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


Man, we sure do love to hate on celebrities these days. Hate, hate, hate. It's our favorite thing.
posted by koeselitz at 7:39 AM on February 16, 2011


> Man, we sure do love to hate on celebrities these days.

To be fair, there are plenty of love-in threads for celebrities here also. It all keeps the wheel of samsara spinning along and grinding our souls away.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:42 AM on February 16, 2011


Now I'm listening to Weird Al's "Achy Breaky Song". Awesome!
posted by Melismata at 7:42 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


Not a Billy Ray Cyrus fan at all, and I love me some BH, but I couldn't help but think that Bill was channelling those two hillbillies from Deliverance when he wrote that bit.

Hicks was an important comedian, and a hilarious one, but at times he could be one ugly, judgmental motherfucker.
posted by middleclasstool at 7:43 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


> Now I'm listening to Weird Al's "Achy Breaky Song". Awesome!

Don't forget to share with everyone.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:44 AM on February 16, 2011


Honestly, what did he expect? What child star turns out to be an emotionally healthy teenager and young adult? Fine, you can name a handful, but only because they're the exceptions to the rule. I guess I don't have much sympathy for somebody who was famous himself and made active choices to get his daughter into an industry he had to recognize as fucked up.
posted by something something at 8:08 AM on February 16, 2011


jenkinsEar: Into her womb convey sterility!
Dry up in her the organs of increase;
And from her derogate body never spring
A babe to honour her! If she must teem,
Create her child of spleen; that it may live,
And be a thwart disnatured torment to her!
Let it stamp wrinkles in her brow of youth;
With cadent tears fret channels in her cheeks;
Turn all her mother's pains and benefits
To laughter and contempt; that she may feel
How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is
To have a thankless child! Away, away!


Or the shorter version, (said at least a billion times by my mother when I was a teenager):


"Just you wait..."
posted by Jody Tresidder at 8:15 AM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


twoleftfeet: If only Letterman had been willing to allow that Bill Hicks routine onto the air back in 1993, the show might have gone forward as planned and all of this could have been avoided.

So shooting people that you don't like is funny now, or ever was? Hey, did you hear that Gabrielle Giffords is finally able to speak and eat solid food again?

OK, look, I know that there are a lot of Bill Hicks fanboys here and I should make a point of saying that, when I first heard about Hicks, I went out and watched every video that I could find of his stuff, and a lot of it was great. But that routine that you quoted? Especially that bit about Cyrus' "fruity little ponytail"? (Hicks, for those of you who haven't watched the linked video, is rockin' a fine mullet himself when he's doing this routine.) Yeah, "fruity." At least he isn't using "fag" as a pejorative in his routine, the way that he did in some of the earlier videos. And, of course, describing people that he doesn't like as sucking Satan's cock.

As I said, there's still a lot of good stuff in Hicks' routines, and I can forgive him some homophobia on account of where he grew up and the fact that he was toning it down in his later concerts. But he wasn't some kind of counterculture saint, no matter how much people have tried to paint him as such after his death, and, being revolted by personality cults in general, I can't stand people who cite him chapter and verse; I'd like to think that he'd have ended up dropping the routine entirely. (Assuming, of course, that he didn't go the other way and become another Dennis Miller.)
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:45 AM on February 16, 2011 [8 favorites]


It all keeps the wheel of samsara spinning along and grinding our souls away.

         Phil Collins
             |
             |
Radiohead — —•— — Lady Gaga
             |
             |
       Billy Ray Cyrus

posted by Devils Rancher at 8:47 AM on February 16, 2011 [4 favorites]


Strong men also cry.
posted by grubi at 8:54 AM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


I swear, the self-righteousness on this site is tiring. It practically sucks Satan's cock.
posted by IvoShandor at 8:59 AM on February 16, 2011


I bought three albums of Collins-era Genesis the other day, and am enjoying Just a Job to Do, even as I type.
posted by Devils Rancher at 9:01 AM on February 16, 2011


"How many interviews did I give and say, 'You know what's important between me and Miley is I try to be a friend to my kids'? I said it a lot. And sometimes I would even read other parents might say, 'You don't need to be a friend, you need to be a parent.' Well, I'm the first guy to say to them right now: You were right. I should have been a better parent.

I felt sympathetic when I read that, and I do feel for him, because Miley has a long way to fall.

He seems to have no sense of the consequences of his actions. He really is a naif, jumping in with both feet and not worrying about the what might come. It's obviously been a long-standing issue with him: he married Miley's Mom after getting two women pregnant at the same time. He came out to LA and signed in with the Disney machine without thinking about what that might mean for his family, even with the examples of Britney Spears and Lindsey Lohan and the like staring him right in the face.

ADOPT-A-HIGHWAY
ATHEISTS UNITED


When I read the line about the atheist association cleaning up the highway, I thought he was going to say something like, "So we decided to adopt a portion of the highway ourselves and clean it up in the name of our church." That would have made sense to me. I am not a religious person, but I do respect religious people who do good work as a sign of their faith.

Instead, he seems to believe that atheists represent Satan(!!!) and are out to get his family" "A physical sign. It could have easily said 'You will now be attacked by Satan."

So my original sympathy is tempered with sadness that he has not learned the real lesson here and started taking personal responsibility. Rather than actually being the parent he now knows he should have been, he's just divorced his wife, cut off ties with the family, thrown his hands up in the air and said, "Nothing I can do."

In his case, his take on religion has allowed him to get away with this inaction. There is this saying I've heard, "Let go and let God." The idea is that you just accept that God is looking out for your best interests. Never mind common sense, never mind working hard or saving money or making conscious, well-reasoned decisions. Just Trust in the Lord.

That kind of anti-intellectualism is the same blind faith that leads parents to just not tell their kids about birth control because they don't want them to have sex, or educate them on science and evolution because God created the earth 5000 years ago. That brand of "faith" makes all the other, well-intentioned, thoughtful and intelligent religious people out there look bad.

I think, myself, that it is that extreme that has led to more vocal people on the other side of the religious issue. So, ironically, the fundamentalist folk have really helped the atheist movement gain footing in this country.
posted by misha at 9:11 AM on February 16, 2011 [5 favorites]


I'm just here because someone told me there would be free snacks.

Damned autocorrect. It was supposed say "free snarks."
posted by five fresh fish at 9:12 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


D) He thinks there may be external factors, beyond his own deficits as a parent, that may have caused his daughters behavior to go off the rails

Come on. He said Satan is after his family. Intelligent people don't make this claim. Idiots do.
posted by xmutex at 9:12 AM on February 16, 2011 [6 favorites]


Billy Ray Sighrus
posted by orme at 9:26 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


I sold my little girl to Uncle Walt...

I sold my little girl to Uncle Walt...

I sold my little girl to Uncle Walt...





SATAN!!!!!!!!!
posted by tspae at 9:52 AM on February 16, 2011


1. Pimps out his child.
2. Makes lots of money.
3. Problems ensue.
4. Blames everybody but himself.
posted by Sassenach at 9:55 AM on February 16, 2011


I though it was going to be one of those "mash-up" video things.
posted by bonobothegreat at 10:43 AM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


So, in his mind, he knew Hollywood was a bad place before he went there, to the point that he got the family baptized and envisaged this Satan sign on the way in and he... Decided to take the money and do it anyway? Using his religious framework, he literally sold his (and his daughters) soul to the devil. He made a conscious decision to go for it anyway. Look, I'm not saying this is true, I'm saying This was HIS understanding of the business and he still went for it.

Yeah, he is a bad parent. Hope he learns in time to save the other one.
posted by Jubey at 10:44 AM on February 16, 2011 [3 favorites]


And can everyone just shut the fuck up about the thirty seconds they crossed paths with Kurt Cobain already?

B-b-b-but that's when the torch was passed, man!
posted by mazola at 10:47 AM on February 16, 2011


I can still have sympathy for the rich and famous, but I have difficulty sympathizing with someone who'd talk to the public via GQ about his daughter like she's going to Hell in a handbasket. Just so you know, he's not responsible for that. OH HEY, by the way, did you know his album's coming out Memorial Day? Please.
posted by katillathehun at 11:14 AM on February 16, 2011


guess I don't have much sympathy for somebody who was famous himself

To be completely fair, I think Nashville famous is a bit different from L.A. famous.

The Jesus talk is pretty normal for Nashville, and country music in general. (This is a place where people try to make music connections IN church, after all, too.) Lip service, at least, is given to the Almighty.


But the Disney machine is a whole different piece of work itself. Yes, as a responsible parent Cyrus has a lot of blame to take here. But he may not have known nearly as much what his family was getting into as we think he should have.

I like this article if for no other reason than it's a cautionary tale. We, indeed, are not called to be our children's "friends." Boy howdy, is that hard. Been bit by that a wee bit myself.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 12:14 PM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


There is someone famous whose life is a total mess.
Let's all point at them and laugh.
posted by Flood at 12:15 PM on February 16, 2011


Let's all point at them and laugh.

Way ahead of you.
posted by grubi at 12:30 PM on February 16, 2011


Man, we sure do love to hate on celebrities these days.
posted by koeselitz at 3:39 PM on February 16

I don't hate people because they are famous (and Cyrus isn't, really, any more, is he?). I hate them because they are hateful. This ignorant goober motherfucker called me an agent of Satan. That's why I hate him.
posted by Decani at 1:01 PM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


I don't hate people because they are famous (and Cyrus isn't, really, any more, is he?). I hate them because they are hateful. This ignorant goober motherfucker called me an agent of Satan. That's why I hate him.

Wow, you just managed to make the conservative Christian guy with the mullet and the album of patriotic songs look like the reasonable, non-obnoxious one. Quite an accomplishment.

He didn't call you anything, because this isn't about you. He shared a conversation that his family had in the privacy of their car, in an interview.
posted by jbickers at 1:13 PM on February 16, 2011


I don't hate Billy Ray Cyrus. I don't hate Satan. I don't really hate anyone. Except Nazis. I hate (Illinois) Nazis.
posted by IvoShandor at 1:22 PM on February 16, 2011


I don't hate Billy Ray Cyrus. I don't hate Satan. I don't really hate anyone. Except Nazis. I hate (Illinois) Nazis.

Liar. You decide that after World War I society was too sick to survive.
posted by grubi at 2:03 PM on February 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


I feel like a sucker for reading that shit.

This is why I read the first ~20 comments or so first.

I don't hate Billy Ray Cyrus.

I dont. I dont! I dont hate him! I dont hate him!
posted by mrgrimm at 2:27 PM on February 16, 2011


"So, in his mind, he knew Hollywood was a bad place before he went there, to the point that he got the family baptized and envisaged this Satan sign on the way in and he... Decided to take the money and do it anyway? Using his religious framework, he literally sold his (and his daughters) soul to the devil. He made a conscious decision to go for it anyway. Look, I'm not saying this is true, I'm saying This was HIS understanding of the business and he still went for it."

The overriding impression I took away from that interview is how directionless Billy Ray Cyrus seems to feel. The last thing he did on his own was buy a guitar and become a country music star. (And even then it was God telling him to get the guitar.) After that his life has been a bunch of events that happened to him, rather than a series of goals or accomplishments that he achieved. Some songs were hits and others flopped. David Lynch led to Doc, which led to Miley’s success. He went to LA for his daughter, his wife got them baptised, his daughter is the one that pointed out that sign. Her handlers got him to “take the bullets” and keep her career on track. Now he’s stuck in a darkened kitchen writing maudlin songs and eating cold cereal, and not quite sure what happened. It`s tough to feel sympathy for a man who feels so comfortable characterizing himself as a passenger in his own life.
posted by Kevin Street at 4:46 PM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


I don't see how he could have landed the Lynch or Doc parts without having been proactive himself. I don't see David Lynch as arranging Cyrus' casting like a master chessmaster of casting, although I guess stranger things have happened. Either way, I doubt the PAX folk saw Mulholland Dr. and then determined that Cyrus absolutely had to star in their morally uplifting medical drama. I'm sure Cyrus' agent, manager, handlers, etc. have had a huge impact on his career, but he couldn't possibly be as passive as all that. At the very least, he doesn't seem any more passive than a million other people I've met.
posted by Sticherbeast at 5:04 PM on February 16, 2011


I grew up in the same area of Kentucky as Billy Ray. I was about 20 miles west of his hometown of Flatwoods, KY, and I'm the same age as Cyrus. I played music with many of the musicians that played in his bands, so although we never jammed, we occupied some of the same circles. But his religious views are very much a product of that part of Eastern Kentucky...these are the same views that were imposed on me, as well. You can't swing a dead cat without bashing the poor beast's corpse into a church, and back in the day, it was an extremely fundamentalist atmosphere (it still is in a lot of places). Atheism was...and still is...equated with Satanism, never mind the fact that if you are an athiest, you can't believe in Satan, since that entity was a creation of God.

But Cyrus came about his views honestly, and like a lot of people his age from Eastern Kentucky, he has maintained those views. Many of my friends back home still do, too. I don't share these views, but I don't begrudge my family and friends who do. It's part of who they are, but it's not the only part, and I appreciate those other parts more than I reject the ones I don't share.

And for what it's worth, in this piece a fair amount seems to be made of Billy Ray's early family struggles, his father's gospel music background and his death from lung cancer after years of work in a steel mill. What is not mentioned is that his father, Ron Cyrus, was an 11-term Democratic state representative. Everyone in Eastern Kentucky knew who Ron Cyrus was...he was a man to know who could get things done for you and Billy Ray learned much from his father's 21-year political career. He is not nearly as naive as he suggests...he was very shrewd at marketing himself, and while he was indeed a hard worker who was playing clubs every weekend in the Kentucky/Ohio/West Virginia tri-state area, he also knew how to work people. He knows spin.
posted by TexArcane at 5:20 PM on February 16, 2011 [5 favorites]


He didn't call you anything, because this isn't about you. He shared a conversation that his family had in the privacy of their car, in an interview.

He is telling a story about a private conversation in which he suggests atheists are somehow related, whether symbolically or literally, to Satanists who are out to get him and his family. Your suggestion that because his slur happened in private it isn't directed at atheists is like saying someone isn't a racist because he's careful to avoid using the n-word within earshot of black people.
posted by MegoSteve at 7:29 PM on February 16, 2011 [3 favorites]


Well, it isn't like some atheists aren't "evangelistic." He was simply expressing the fact that that area of California is not particularly friendly to folks of his faith.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 7:45 PM on February 16, 2011


He was simply expressing the fact that that area of California is not particularly friendly to folks of his faith.

That area of California is not particularly friendly to anyone unless you can make them money. If you can they don't care what you believe. He and his daughter were probably welcomed with open arms.
"Every time something happened in Miley's career, every time the train went off the track, if you will—Vanity Fair, pole-dancing, whatever scandal it was—her people, or as they say in today's news, her handlers, every time they'd put me... 'Somebody's shooting at Miley! Put the old man up there!' Well, I took it, because I'm her daddy, and that's what daddies do. 'Okay, nail me to the cross, I'll take it....' "
Daddy should have been around before the scandal being a parent and not just playing one on TV. Though I don't think his daughter has done much that would be considered scandalous if she wasn't being followed around by paparazzi 24/7. Her biggest problem now is she's 18, rich, surrounded by enablers looking for a free ride and doesn't seem to have any restraining influence in her life. He has abdicated his responsibility as a parent to handlers and then is shocked when they tell him "It's none of your business" when he called to ask about the latest blow up. Hopefully he'll be around to support her and be a better parent if she does go full Lohan.
Anyway I'm sure his new album will sell lots of copies.
posted by the_artificer at 10:44 PM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


"nail me to the cross"? C'mon.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:48 PM on February 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


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