Henry Rollins slams Miley & Daft Punk, tells Rolling Stone they suck: funny or rude?

Henry Rollins

I love Henry Rollins. Can you believe I’m writing about Henry Rollins in a gossip context? This post could go over like a lead-filled balloon, but it’s Christmas Eve, and I think the world needs a little Henry. He’s so silver-foxy (he’s 52!) and intelligent. I might not always agree with everything he says, but I like the way he says it. Henry Rollins would probably cringe if he took the time to google himself and saw me gushing over his brash yet eloquent ways. I was one of many girls in Tulsa who swooned during his spoken word tour in 2008. We all waited by his tour bus after the show, but he never materialized. I don’t blame him. Groupies are crazy.

Henry’s a busy guy. He’s been hosting a radio show on KCRW and doing some stuff for the History Channel. Plus he just wrapped a movie where he plays a sad cannibal. The movie sounds awful, but you know, it’s Henry. He recently sat down with Rolling Stone to talk about how much music sucks these days. By extension, he tells Rolling Stone they suck too. The journo takes it pretty well:

Does he pay attention to new music? “Absolutely. I can’t keep up with all the records I buy. I get letters, like, ‘Dude, music sucks now.’ Not on my show, not on my stereo. I finally, forensically listened to the new David Bowie record. I put in a pair of good earphones and really sat down with that record on a day off. It’s way better than I thought it was the first time around. I don’t know why he uses those heavy-handed studio drummers for everything, but the songs are pretty amazing lyrically and there’s a lot of great backing vocals and some really smart overdubs. It took me a long time to get into modern David Bowie. I was such a fan. I got up really early this morning and listened to Station to Station and just went aw. Those records, those Bowie records to me are just about as good as a record can get.”

What does Henry think of Daft Punk or “Blurred Lines”? “I’ve never heard Daft Punk; I’ve never heard a track of theirs in my life. They’re the two guys with motorcycle helmets on? You know what, you will take this any way you will. That to me is like Rolling Stone music. It’s the sh-t that’s in your magazine. And it’s like, that world … I’m so glad that you all have found your people, but that world is so alienating to me. Anything that gets on the Grammys or the American Music Awards … like, was Miley Cyrus on the cover of your magazine? Yeah, see, I like real music. John Coltrane’s my favorite musician, what am I doing reading Rolling Stone? You know what I mean?”

Henry doesn’t “give a sh-t” about Miley: “I don’t. She’s part of that bigger world of music I was just talking about. All of it to me is like, long may it wave, I don’t have anything against anyone doing their thing, but it’s just not for me. And Robin Thicke, is that the guy? I have no idea what he sounds like. I’ve never heard Kelly Clarkson, I just, I live in a different musical world.”

On the 2013 Black Flag drama: “I know what I read. The Flag guys, they’re doing their thing I guess. Kids were writing me, ‘Hey, I can’t wait to see you next week in Brisbane.’ I wrote them back like, ‘I’m not gonna be there, I’m in Toronto.’ And they went, ‘Oh, you’re not in the band?’ I’m like ‘absolutely not.’ [They were] saying, ‘Wow, the place was kinda half full and 30 minutes of the set, it was a quarter full, people were running out angry that they’re never gonna get that 30 bucks back.’ And so I’ve seen neither entity, Black Flag or Flag. I’m not interested in the past unless it’s the rerelease of a record; I’m not interested in my own past that much. But I’ve heard that the Flag thing is pretty powerful. I’ve never seen it, but I know some people whose opinions I respect who went. And they said it was solid. It is what it is: men in their 50s playing 30-year-old music. But as far as the politic of all of it, what’s going on with all of those people, I stayed well away from it. I’m looking forward to 2014 and what will come.”

[From Rolling Stone]

Is Henry totally rude in this interview, or is this kind of funny? I’m laughing because of course he’s right about Miley. Her interview for Rolling Stone might have delivered many outrageous gems, but the cover was cringeworthy. Daft Punk is very well liked, but maybe Henry bristles at the “punk” part of their name. He’s never heard them, and he assumes they’re bland. Oh well. Henry’s not missing anything. I haven’t been able to get into Daft Punk at all. They seem like cool guys. I should like them. It just hasn’t happened.

As for Henry telling the magazine they suck, well … he’s correct. Rolling Stone used to be a serious journalistic endeavor, and now they’re printing whatever the mainstream dictates. Henry is being kind of rude by calling out an RS journo in an RS interview, but it’s Henry freaking Rollins. The dude has earned a few allowances in the music business. Plus he’s got an abrasive reputation (as a softie) to maintain.

About that Black Flag drama: There was a big mess this year where various Black Flag members were fighting over the band’s trademark, and one of them (Greg Ginn) tried to carry off a “reunion tour” all by his lonesome. Ginn unsuccessfully sued Henry and other former members of the band. I get the impression that Henry is very grateful for his humble punk beginnings, but he’s got so much other stuff going on now, so why dwell on it.

Meanwhile, Hank just keeps getting better and better with age.

Henry Rollins

Henry Rollins

Photos courtesy of Fame/Flynet & WENN

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71 Responses to “Henry Rollins slams Miley & Daft Punk, tells Rolling Stone they suck: funny or rude?”

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  1. Kitty punk says:

    Thank you Bedhead for the Henry Rollins gossip. He is one of my favorite drama queens! Merry Christmas.

  2. klue says:

    He played a white supremacist on SOA.. Talented guy

  3. judyjudy says:

    I can’t believe he’s 52!

    I used to adore him but then kind of forgot about him. Thank you for posting this and rekindling the spark in my heart (and my panties)!

  4. Deb says:

    He is awesome and never dull!!

  5. Joy says:

    I’m glad I’m not alone in being oddly attracted to this man.

  6. j.eyre says:

    First of all, yes, he is an attractive man. To me, the part you captioned here sounds very consistent to the Henry Rollins I have read for lo these many years. He says things in a matter-of-fact tone, without raising his voice. I don’t always (rarely) like what he says, but I like that he has stayed true to who he is, I guess.

    But I also think he means it when he says “I am glad you found your people.” I don’t think he sees different as wrong in a broader sense. Like the musicians he cites – he thinks they are crap (or believes he would) but does not present himself as the authority, just what he thinks is awful. And I am kind of okay with that.

    But oh, that bit on Bowie. I could just read that paragraph over and over and over…

    • V4Real says:

      Oh Henry after all these years you’re still cracking me up with your subtle shade. I love it. Now I can’t get the song Liar out of my head.

      BTW he still has the thickest neck I’ve ever seen on a man

    • blue marie says:

      Completely agree with everything you said. I rarely agree with Henry either but appreciate the fact that he is who he is, who he has always been. He’s not looking too bad in those photos either.

    • Marty says:

      I’m not very familar with Henry’s personal views, but I have read some of his other work specifically on relationships and thought it was amazing. If anyone has time they should look it up, he is a pretty great writer.

    • Tiffany :) says:

      I am not so familiar with his music, but I have listened to his show on KCRW quite a few times. He REALLY knows music, and I love how much detail he can get into when discussing it. He is very wise.

  7. Mich says:

    I love him. I love him. I love him. That is all.

  8. Lucy2 says:

    He’s done a few podcasts in recent months- I didn’t know much about him before that, but he’s an interesting guy.
    I don’t mind him calling out RS. Popular music right now is all about shock value and publicity, not talent, and RS is part of the problem.

    • telesma says:

      He’s been doing spoken word for the last couple of decades, and he’s published some books. And after listening to him since the 80′s, I really don’t think he’s throwing shade. This is just how he thinks, it’s not his thing so he doesn’t care. Trust me, when Henry Lawrence Garfield (Rollins) throws shade, you will KNOW about it.

  9. GiGi says:

    I’m *just* getting into Sons of Anarchy (We watched the first 2 seasons just this week! Why didn’t anyone tell me?!?!) and I think he does such a great job. And I have the forever Henry Rollins love, too. When I was young, he was just everything – so smart, so real. And he’s aging nicely, too ;)

  10. MavenTheFirst says:

    “John Coltrane’s my favorite musician, what am I doing reading Rolling Stone? You know what I mean?”

    Bwahahahaha!!!! Doesn’t that say it all? He’s hilarious. I love everything he said. I remember RS when it was a must read for music fanatics and everyone else. Haven’t touched it in years.

    I don’t know who Henry Rollins is, but I’m very glad he’s out there. Oh, and he really knows his music! Bonus! Oh, and he didn’t use the F word once and still got his point across as the quote above illustrates. Awesome.

    Steve Martin and Henry Rollins- I am not used to so much substance on this site after all the Miley, Cracken, etc. posts. A perfect holiday gift. Thanks!

  11. rep says:

    Well i will Google him, Still don’t know Who he is

  12. delphi says:

    I think a lot of people like to project a lot of unwarranted aggression onto Henry. Yes, he’s bombastic. Yes, he’s opinionated. But you know what? He’s one of the best-read, astute observers of the world I’ve encountered. He might not dig your vibe, and he’ll call you on your BS, but he at least makes the effort to educate himself on a topic before he spouts his opinion. I saw him last fall on his “50 Capitals” tour, and even he pokes fun at himself, saying that he’s “only 10, 15 years MAX from being that cranky old guy in a bathrobe screaming at kids to ‘stay off my damn lawn’”.

    All that, and he STILL has an amazing body. (What? I ain’t blind!)

    • LadySlippers says:

      He’s blunt and honest. He has no issues calling a spade a spade. And I agree — he’s intelligent and knows what he’s saying when he opens his mouth. I may not agree but dayum he makes you think about it.

    • telesma says:

      Yes, this. I think a lot of people project their own anger and angst onto him, and in reality he’s far more enlightened than he thinks he is, or than many of his musical fans seem to realize. The people who’ve followed his spoken word and publishing know better.

  13. Dr. Venkman says:

    He’s not rude. He’s honest.
    Big difference.

  14. vvvoid says:

    I will always love him for the simple reason that he’s the man behind Liar. Best song ever. Best description of a pathological lying bastard ever

    • TheDizzyMermaid says:

      Actually, Ozzy, Zakk Wyld and I think someone else wrote that song. But Henry made it his own.

  15. homegrrrl says:

    I know, me rooow, right? How is it possible he gets sausier every year, buff in a sexy/ good in bed/ kind of way. And the range of his mind makes him exponentially more hot.
    I commpletely agree that I’m also in a different musical universe, and it’s not because I’m old; I’ve always been able to sort through commerically propped up suckazz music, and miley is a prime example of style over substance.

    For him to insult RS is possibly rude but also completely appropriate, and BTW, daft punk is whateves. Sigh. . Mr Rollins…MY soulmate.

  16. pantalones en fuego says:

    I LOVE Henry Rollins. Always have, always will. He is on the short list of men I would leave my husband for. Thanks for the post Bedhead.

  17. Ginger says:

    I love Henry too so thanks for the post! He is always funny to me. I also saw him on a spoken word tour when I was in college (ages ago). When I was in high school my friends and I were into Black Flag too. So, I appreciate his outspoken manner (probably because I’m the same way). There’s no way you would ever catch Henry playing some PR game. He is no BS! It’s refreshing. I caught his show the other day on the History Channel and I hadn’t seen him in a while. I was surprised that he has let his hair go gray but he is a silver fox, like you said!

  18. Adrien says:

    Well they’re both (Miley and Henry) “punks”. Of course Henry has heard of Daft Punk. He hates them because they’re a bunch of edm DJs.

    • telesma says:

      Miley Cyrus is no “punk” despite her packaging. She’s a trained monkey. And despite what marketers want you to think. “punk” actually means something, something that has nothing to do with whatever schlock they’re trying to sell you.

  19. Jennifer12 says:

    He gets sexier all the time, and he knows it. He embraces his age, calling himself “that weird old uncle” who says whatever he thinks. He’s also super articulate. Kind of short, but it’s cool. Love how he calls out Miley, who truly believes she’s punk. Awesome.

  20. LeAnn Stinks says:

    Henry is not rude, he is just outspoken and honest. I love him too. I find him to be extremely intelligent and articulate.

    Keep on preaching Mr. Rollins!

  21. vv says:

    I love him as well. If you want to see rude, the interview he gave to Nardwar the Human Serviette yeaaars ago was rude lol But I still dug him.

  22. Amy says:

    Henry Rollins is one of the brighter stars in my personal solar system, and this is a big reason why (You won’t want your seven minutes back):http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BkvEpoqFx6c

  23. Lucy says:

    The only thing I disagree with is the Daft Punk bit. But then again, he clearly says he knows nothing about them, so it’s okay. The rest of the interview is pure gold, though!

  24. katrina404 says:

    Love me some Henry! Thanks for posting.

  25. LouLou says:

    I will nearly always stop what I am doing to read Henry’s opinion on anything. I don’t always agree, but he’s smart, funny, and thoughtful. I listened to Black Flag in the 80s, kids!

  26. JGL says:

    Henry Rollins is what punk is all about. If Miley Cyrus still has the audacity to call herself punk after this, then she’s delusional.
    Black Flag forever!

    • Stoner says:

      LOL. Henry Rollins hasn’t been punk in 30 years.

      He is a hero to the average intellect and nothing more.

  27. squirrelbait says:

    Thank you Bedhead for gifting me with some Henry on Christmas eve!

  28. vixo says:

    Love him, great man !

  29. greenmonster says:

    Thank you so much for this article. I LOVE Henry Rollins! I saw him live in 2008 also… I think it was then, when he was talking about a TV show he was doing – Sons of Anarchy. Because of him I started to watch the show. Have I already mentioned that i love him?!?
    Henry Rollins is also the only person, where I always say “He is not rude! He is honest!”

  30. Axis2ClusterB says:

    Adore him! So much love.

  31. Lucy says:

    Random, but I wonder if he knows Lorde (he probably doesn’t, tho), and what would he think of her if he did…

  32. Tara says:

    I saw both Keith Morris’ “Flag” and Greg Ginn’s “Black Flag” over the summer and I have to get behind Keith’s reinvention more so than Greg’s. Maybe it was the venues? Flag was at RiotFest in Chicago and Black Flag was a at small venue in Sacramento. To be fair, I also have crazy respect for Keith Morris’ music beyond the Black Flag years. The Circle Jerks are one of my favorite bands ever so maybe I’m just being biased. It’s fun hearing Henry’s $.02 on the subject.

  33. Nona says:

    Unf hes still hot after all these years. Look at other guys in his age group like anthony keidis who was hot back in the day too and they look rough and gristley. But henry ‘s maintained!

  34. M79 says:

    Rolling Stone is stopped being a legit music magazine a long time ago. Having the Jonas Bros on the cover twice and that hideous untrue article about Michael Jackson’s nose falling off after his death instead of talking about his legacy were proof they were indistinguishable from any tabloid. Anyone who thinks this is a good magazine clearly doesn’t remember what it used to be like. Sell-outs, big time.

  35. ray says:

    ive loved black flag since i was a kid, and theyre forever one of my favourite bands, but i cringe at the thought of seeing them now. Henry’s right, no one wants to see 50 year old dudes playing 30 year old music, don’t tarnish the perfect punk band.

  36. Oh Behead you *do* love me even though I’m a stranger….you gave the gift of Sweet, sweet Rollins. When I finish wistfully staring at the photos reliving my teenage crush on Henry I might comment that this really just come across as typical Henry to anyone with a decent appreciation – blunt, to the point, honest as hell. Its one of his better qualities that Rollins seems incapable of BSing the way most people do. I love his rants about U2….

  37. Isabelle says:

    …..and I though I was one of the few people infatuated with Henry. He’s always been at the top of my list of forever crushes . He’s almost too intelligent for his own good and doesn’t temper it very well. Why he comes across as rude and arrogant. He has described himself as angry and aggressive, so he probably knows how he’s perceived. Bet he’s a handful to work for or assist, he seems to be a firebrand Alpha male.

  38. koolkitty says:

    I’ve loved him so long…

  39. Trillion says:

    Hey Bedhead this is for you: I had a friend who had a brief fling w/ Henry in the 90′s. Naturally, I asked for D&D (details and dimensions). She said he was good in bed, “nice” size (not sure what she meant by that, exactly, and she did not elaborate) and was into her body odor. She said he like to sniff her armpits after she worked out. For some reason, I found this endearingly anti-macho, while still having a macho exterior – an exciting dichotomy for me as a man-loving feminist. Oh, and he was a guest judge on RuPaul’s Drag Race a few seasons ago. Swoooooon!

  40. idksleorejf says:

    good for him +7383927274928 points

  41. MonkSolo says:

    I used to listen to Weight and Come in and Burn on repeat in my first car. Rollins is awesome!

  42. Dommy Dearest says:

    Nope, he’s appropriate. I like the interview. He didn’t exactly diss but gave his honest opinion on music and whatnot.

    Also, after seeing him in that season of Sons of Anarchy I’ll forever be a little creeped out when I see him.

  43. Julia says:

    I love Henry Rollins :) and Iggy Pop!
    BTW why aren’t there any interesting musicians around 30? The young generation seems to be vain and self-obsessed and BORING and listening to their PR team before they do anything so…

  44. lola says:

    He’s just so virile. Most guys his age are getting testosterone replacement therapy and,,this guy’s got it dripping from every poRE in spades.

  45. Jennifer says:

    I know he’s hot, but he’s also a man baby. For a while he would only date nineteen year olds because they didn’t have any “baggage” for him to deal with. I know a chick a year younger than me who gave him a beej and was about that age at the time. Just…blech.

  46. MonicaQ says:

    If you don’t know anything about an artist (re: Daft Punk) why cast shade? That was my only gripe.

  47. Lisa says:

    He’s not really slamming, just being pretentious.

    • Lucinda says:

      That’s how I read it too. He sounds like that guy who is just too cool for you and he’s going to tell you how cool he is in case you aren’t cool enough to pick up on his cool vibe. At 21 it’s annoying. At 52, it’s kinda pathetic. I don’t really know anything about this guy but as a first introduction to him, this interview doesn’t really do him any favors. And yes, you can be honest and rude at the same time and that’s how this reads to me.

      • Anastasia Beaverhausen says:

        I thought I was the only one who felt this way after reading all the comments praising this guy. People who say “blah blah now a days suck” I roll my eyes at.

  48. Grant says:

    I’m sorry, but “real music”? Who died and made this ass the arbiter of what’s “real music” and what isn’t? I get where he’s coming from with Miley but there’s a way to deliver his message without coming off like a sanctimonious blowhard. Some of us would rather listen to a hook-y pop gem over Bob Dylan, ok?

  49. Ag says:

    Good read. And I love the shade.