In These Times interviews Ian MacKaye of Fugazi, Minor Threat and his current side project, The Evens.
On music in ads:
Right now, the conventional thinking has it that the only way to have a music career is to do it with advertisements. That is total bullshit. The way to have a music career is to make good music and then people will listen to that.On the branding of childhood:
The people who sell things have an attitude that goes like this: ‘Let’s take the music and place it with our ad. That way, people will associate the deep relationship they have with music with our product.’
This is not where music was supposed to end up. It’s a tragedy that musicians have come to this sort of thinking.
I am, of course, disgusted by mass marketing to children. You can imagine my horror when I discovered that it’s virtually impossible to buy a diaper—which is essentially a shit bag—without a goddamn corporate cartoon figure on it. It’s deeply disturbing.On living in community:
I don’t mean necessarily living in a commune, but rather, I believe in the value of proximity to other people and having an open-door policy. The open-door policy being, an unlocked door may result in the occasional devil, but a locked door insists on a thousand angels walking past.On a turning point:
Right before Embrace [the short-lived band MacKaye formed in 1985], I thought about all the singing I was doing and the anger and protest of my work, and I thought, ‘What is the actual thrust of this work? What is it that I am trying to achieve?’ And I said, ‘Well, I’m trying to achieve happiness for people in the world.’