We live in a time when hipsterism and gentrification continue to levy their tolls on the music world as pointedly as they do the spheres of fashion, art, politics, religion, and, let’s face it, food. It is a time in which the word vintage has been used to the point of obscenity. A prime example; each time the Indie Folk Beard Fetish Movement seems as though it must have reached its nadir, another man slinging a weathered Martin six-string emerges from some corner of the American landscape brandishing a set of whiskers evoking a Chia Pet sponsored by ZZ Top.
My problem is not so much with the decision to grab some suspenders and stop shaving, as it is with the often attendant claim of authenticity, a veneer that seems to say, “Gosh man, we don’t care about being cool, we just want to make honest music.” As if fashion, or genre, had anything to do with authenticity. Gag me with a banjo. It’s a wonder Judee Sill hasn’t come back from the dead to punch some of these guys in the face.Read More