Conor Oberst Disses Lady Gaga, Other Acts who Refuse Arizona Boycott

Categories: News
conoroberstpic2011.jpg

​Bright Eyes singer Conor Oberst is not backing down from the boycott of Arizona.

In a new interview, Outburst Oberst singled out another musician by name, picking on Lady Gaga, who bravely performed in Phoenix last week for the second time on her current tour. Her first time through town she famously asked, "You really think that us dumb fucking pop stars are going to collapse the economy of Arizona?"

Oberst called Gaga "irresponsible" because she brushed off the boycott the Sound Strike and Zack de la Rocha began championing in the wake of SB 1070, a dumb anti-immigrant law blocked by courts before it could take effect.

"It's a real shame for someone like Lady Gaga," he said. "When she does a concert there, she's providing so much money for the state of Arizona, so it's really irresponsible for her to think of it in those terms. She's obviously intelligent and informed enough to engage in certain political positions."

He also had this: "I think that they're short-sighted in the way they're looking at it... Everyone involved is aware that the act of one band not playing in Arizona, or even all of the bands as a musical component of the boycott, is not going to shut down the state government."

We'd like to know more about Oberst's positions, but he, wisely dodged our interview request as his publicist Chloe Walsh of Press Here Publicity describes it she, "failed to change his schedule around to accommodate [our] last minute request to ask him questions about Sound Strike prior to a performance" at Austin's South By Southwest music festival two weeks ago. (Press Here also represents boycotters Jenny Lewis, Mos Def, and Maroon 5.) Shucks. It would have been nice to hear what they taught Conor about the Gadsden Purchase in Prep school.


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27 comments
Ohwtfpeaches
Ohwtfpeaches

Dude fuck the dumbass that wrote this, and fuck Lady GaGa. I mean the girl is smart enough to become one of the most famous girls out there. Bitch should care a little more about the people who listen to that shit.

ignoranceisnotbliss
ignoranceisnotbliss

Martin Cizmar, the music editor for Phoenix New Times.You are the biggest troll I've seen in quite some time.

Elitists tend to think that they know what is best.

The media, in which you work with, is complete bullshit.You control, distract, and stupefy our country.

Of course you're going to push Lady Gaga,she's OBVIOUSLY the best thing for America's growth as a nation.

ignoranceisnotbliss
ignoranceisnotbliss

The lack of intelligence that the majority of you people have is astonishing. You're all pretty much basing musical talent on a person's political views.That is just utterly ridiculous.

Lady Gaga is the one who is a mere "footnote" within the history of music. Her songs, whether they're commercially popular or not, have no positive morals, whatsoever.

Whereas, Conor Oberst writes music of virtuous values.

I'm not usually one to get involved in pointless arguments with people who will not listen to something that they do not want to hear,but all I know is that when I have children, they will learn how to have a "pokerface" and to be a whore from the music they're interested in.They will learn how to make our world a better place.

Grow up America, you're already too ignorant for words.

Leslie Barton
Leslie Barton

But when Fremont, in his precious home state of Nebraska, tried to pass a similar bill, he sidestepped his blustery bullshit and set up an ACLU benefit show in Omaha. Oberst said this in response to Charlie Levy's open letter to musicians last year, "Charlie, I promise you, if this Fremont law had been passed Statewide instead of in a rural town of 25,000 people, I would be the first to call for a boycott of my home state."

Stay classy, Conor.

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linkiss

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Tim Merrick
Tim Merrick

twat....He should look at the example of Billy Bragg playing East Germany before the wall came down. You don't change anything by staying away.....

Phoenix New Times
Phoenix New Times

Ironically enough, Billy Bragg is signed up for the Sound Strike. I guess communist East Germany was less offensive to him that Arizona under a law THAT WILL NEVER GO INTO EFFECT ANYWAY.

Liz Boyle
Liz Boyle

It's like RadioFreePhoenix.com refusing to play the music of Monsters of Folk, for the decision of ONE of it's members. Why take it out on, say....M. Ward, because Conor Oberst has to hop on some sort of trendy/indie "let's-stick-it-to-the-man" bandwagon. Oberst's boycott is meaningless to "the man",Jan Brewer and her pre 1070 cohorts, but hurtful to his fans. How counter productive, and uninformed!

MeadoWoman
MeadoWoman

I live 35 minutes from the border and the LAST thing I think of SB1070 is that it is 'a dumb law.' I do believe we have a dumb president who is afraid of offending anyone and is a shyster. And those who say "Hakuna Matata" will one day deeply regret that philosophy. No one nationality has the right to flood our country and remove the rights of all the nations people dying to come to a better place but left to the lottery. Proximity should not mean those starving to death in Africa, Asia, and so forth and who are experiencing deep oppression should have hope removed. This is a dumb article about dumb performers. Last time I checked there is no boycott. Not that I've seen. But there are laws being hindered in unethical ways that are shielding criminal acts.

Becca
Becca

What a grand political statement to punish genuine fans of your music & how brave you are to want to collapse the economy of a people, who had NOTHING to do with passing this law. How intelligent you are Oberst, since you are not impacting those who you supposedly hold responsible, but those who might have agreed with you. Nope you are just getting publicity for YOURSELF. How noble.

amonster
amonster

Fuck Bright Eyes and Conor O, Arizona venues should never let him back here.

Robbie Pfeffer
Robbie Pfeffer

I never thought I would have to say this, but I agree with Gaga.

Kashemshem
Kashemshem

Artists fail to understand that it is the fans who receive the punishment. The Arizona legislature are not Rage Against The Machine fans or Connor Oberst fans. The types of fans a so called independent and liberal thinking artist will attract are most likely opposed to the legislation yet will become alienated from said artist. Jan Brewer and all her cronies are not crying because Oberst will not play trunkspace. As far as the state legislature is concerned they are probably very please they are keeping the true protesters away from Arizona. RATM and Oberst are running away from the fight and hiding like cowards plain and simple.

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AZ Musician
AZ Musician

That would be like boycotting SXSW because Texas gave us George Bush. A lot of us have marched against SB1070. We have a large percentage of conservative retirees in AZ, so we can't always control how our electorate votes. People living in Sun City don't care if Bright Eyes or Lady Gaga plays here.

Roger Guiles
Roger Guiles

"If a man of 20 is not a liberal he has no heart, if a man 0f 40 is not a conservative he has no brain."Winston Churchill

Level-headed in Arizona
Level-headed in Arizona

The guy's a jerk, and to believe that bringing money to our state directly supports 1070 is foolish. Most people hate the law and don't want to suffer financially because of the government's decisions. If anything, supporting a venue here probably supports the sane people who are fighting to keep this state from passing racist legislation. Thus allowing them to stay here longer and keep voting to make Arizona a great place!

GaGaCrazy
GaGaCrazy

Like she's just going to abandon her little monsters in Pheonix. I say paws up! :)

Phoenix New Times
Phoenix New Times

Gaga loves her fans. I could find lyrical examples of both Oberst and Rage resenting them... This is why she'll be remembered in 50 years and they'll be footnotes.

Vael Victus
Vael Victus

Lady Gaga's music is nothing. You can't learn from it. She's changing the pop scene, but what is that even worth?

Salvador
Salvador

I don't know what qualifies you as a music "critic" but regardless of what you think of the boycott or its participants do you really believe RATM will be a mere footnote in the history of music? I'm not familiar enough with Oberst's work but I feel safe in assuming his fans are as loyal as any other fan base that extends beyond Az

hmm
hmm

korn and limp bizkit came out of the same popular music climate that britney spears, mandy moore, and n*sync came out of (directly influenced by RATM remember) so... according to your backwards logic eventually RATM's influence on music in general leads us to, you guessed it, lady gaga.

your view on music is silly and demeaning to everyone involved. everything is interconnected; particularly in music. whether an artist is influenced to imitate or reject, its all a part of the same melting pot.

and man oh man, if you really want to define a genre by its dying days, im eager to see what is going to be left over when this pop bubble burts. i dont like to pit genre against genre and i appreciate lady gaga and hopefully she wont end up on cheesy karaoke reality tv shows in 15 years like her backstreet boy genre-counterparts, but at least someone in RATM is still showing up in the media for something other than shaving their head, going to rehab, or coming out of the closet and going on vacation to the moon.

i am personally proud of artists who make a political statement; i think its an important role they play in society.

yeah it sucks that a *lot* of good bands are avoiding arizonas ridiculous political decisions. but instead of aggresively bashing these concientious objectors individually maybe we should be looking at the bigger picture of how this boycott could be turned around and how we could show the country we are not racist jerks. this article with its dripping sarcasm and obvious extreme negatively and butt-hurtedness towards oberst, no wonder he didnt want to talk to you guys about real issues, this article is equivalent to a bag of flaming dog poo with a "YOU SUCK" note attached to it. great journalism guys.

as a recent college graduate and avid music fan, it has been hard for me to watch culture dry up in arizona, so im taking my degree and im moving elsewhere. for the size that phoenix is, we could be doing a lot better than celebrating two lady gaga preformances. we are better than that, we deserve public space, musical performances up the wazoo, and we should be mad at our government for putting social and cultural interests not only on the back burner but at risk for such a large population of people.

okay, end rant.

Phoenix New Times
Phoenix New Times

I'll say this for Rage Against The Machine: Were it not for them, we never would have had Korn or Limp Bizkit.

To someone who doesn't pay much attention to popular music RATM probably seems important because of record sales in the 90s... but the genre they championed hit a dead end and is not really influencing anyone that doesn't flat-out suck these days. Maybe that will change, but they're not longer relevant and not really cited as an influence by anyone I know of...

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