Most the time Billy Corgan is making headlines around the world it’s because he’s gone off on one of his infamous rants. But a lot of his quotes are often published without any context making them appear much more controversial than they actually are.
But in a recently published video, the Smashing Pumpkins frontman who is due to travel down under for Splendour In The Grass 2012, actually makes a lot of sense when you allow him the time to explain his thoughts on the current state of the music industry.
Speaking with Mashable’s Brian Solis for his Revolution series just after SXSW, Corgan delves into a wide range of topics including how the industry as transformed into a service industry, that artists themselves devalue their own music, and that people don’t trust today’s music enough to pay for it.
He also laments that for many bands, fame is deemed more important than artistry – pointing out it takes more than a viral video to create a musician who has any lasting power in the industry.
“We need to recognise that there’s a cultural gulf, and it’s widening,” Corgan says on the challenges facing bands today. “Over here, you have a very sophisticated fan that gives a shit, and cares, and will pay attention to whatever codified information they need… Whatever you need to feel about your artists.”
“And then there’s a wide gulf, and then it’s like, ‘whatever we [artists] have to do to get your attention.’ If we have to light ourselves on fire… And that gulf is going to get wider. And what the sophisticated fan needs to understand is that if they don’t support artists in total, from “their” world… It’s actually a vote for the other side. And [that] side is only going to get bigger, and bigger, and bigger.”
When you allow Corgan to speak, giving him time to explain himself, he actually makes a lot of sense. We’re not saying we agree with everything he says, but you can watch the whole interview below anyway and make up your own mind.