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Steve Albini Calls Amanda Palmer An “Idiot”

Not amused about her crowdfunding campaigns for her records and her looking for musicians to play with her for free

Amanda Palmer's latest moves didn't sit too well with the music scene. As you may know, the former Dresden Doll financed her new album, “ Theatre Is Evil”, through Kickstarter, raising up to 1.2 million dollars among her fans. And on top of that, she used crowdsourcing to seek the services of a string quartet and a brass section to accompany her on her present tour. Basically, she asked professional musicians from each city where she plays to play as part of her band, in exchange for beer and bear hugs. Steve Albini is one of the many people who are clearly not amused about all this, and he made his discontent public on the online message board of his Electrical Audio studio, dropping pearls like:

- “I have no fundamental problem with either asking your fans to pay you to make your record or go on tour or play for free in your band or gather at a mud pit downstate and sell meth and blowjobs to each other.

-“If your position is that you aren't able to figure out how to do that, that you are forced by your ignorance into pleading for donations and charity work, you are then publicly admitting you are an idiot, and demonstrably not as good at your profession as Jandek, Moondog, GG Allin, every band ever to go on tour without a slush fund .”

-“Pretty much everybody on earth has a threshold for how much to indulge an idiot who doesn't know how to conduct herself, and I think Ms Palmer has found her audience's threshold.”

Today, Amanda Palmer released a statement on her web page, explaining the situation in detail. As you're probably not up for reading a rather repetitive, 3000-word text with three postscripts, we distilled the essence of her message for you here: “if my years working as a street performer taught me anything, they taught me to accept help in every way, to never be too proud or afraid to ask for it. i never got pissed at a passerby for not throwing change in my hat. i stood there knowing that maybe 15 people later, maybe 20, maybe 100…someone would. it’s literally an opposite strategy from someone deciding that they, on principle, won’t gig for free.” She also clarifies that not everyone played for free during her tour, and she doesn't explain what she did with the 1.2 million she raised on Kickstarter, because she already did that (and quite to the detail) at the time.

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