I can't say I'm a fan of Ryan Adams, and I can't say I'm not, because I don't thinkI've heard a note he's played, although I may have caught his act while wincing through the Grammys some year past. I haven't listened much to anybody lately, since most of what's out there strikes me as crap (he muttered anciently).
So my concerns about this hoo-ha are unmotivated by some wish that peoplewould just back off one of my favorite musicians—the sort of tribal spirit thathas some adorers of Michael Jackson protesting the documentary Leaving Neverland. I haven't seen that movie yet, and will, and have no doubt that it will horrify me, notwithstanding my high estimation of the Gloved One's music.
That point brings me to my first concern about the Ryan Adams case. That he's a womanizing dick—what people used to call a "cad"—there seems to be no doubt, a lot of credible musicians, past associates of his, having weighedin publicly about his backstage treatment of themselves.
But does this mean that Adams' latest music should be banned—that therelease of his new album should be cancelled (see below)? Do his predationsas a guy have anything to do with his accomplishments as a musician? I think the artist's work is something separate from his piggery behind the scenes; and so I don't think Adams' album should be cancelled, just as I don't think that Louis C.K. should have stopped doing stand-up comedy because of his (let's call them what they are) perversions; or that Roman Polanski's past (let's call them what they evidently were) predations ought to have aborted his career as a filmmaker. What one does as an artist is one thing, whereas one's art is something else—or we should not just all stop listening to Ryan Adams' music, or stop watching Louis C.K., or stop seeing Polanski's films, but ban the work of all (male) poets, novelists, filmmakers, painters, composers, dancers, musicians, actors and photographers until we're absolutely sure that every one one of them would have passed muster with the gender-relations police force at the New York Times.
That's one of my concerns about the Ryan Adams case—as it is nowa case, i.e., a federal issue. My other one is this:
Why has the FBI involved itself in Adams' private life? Of course, it's not because of his (alleged) mistreatment of the women in his life. The FBIis now investigating him because of his (alleged) online "sexual" exchanges with a woman who, initially, was under-aged. (He claims that he kept asking her how old she really was, and that she kept not answering that question. Some day we may know, or we may not.)
So was what happened (or "happened") between him and her (at first) a crime? And, if so, was that online crime more heinous than the manyactual in-person pedophile adventures of Jeffrey Epstein, that (literally) high-flying friend-of-Bill-and-Hillary-and-Donald-Trump-et-al., whose real pedophilia the FBI eventually investigated? Although the Bureau'sstaggering report on his predations could have landed him in federalprison for the rest of his life, "he cut a deal with Alexander Acosta,then the US Attorney in Miami [and now Trump's Secretary of Labor], which allowed him to serve just 13 months—not in federal or state prison, but in a private wing of a Palm Beach County jail."https://www.vox.com/2018/12/3/18116351/jeffrey-epstein-trump-clinton-crimes-molestation
Now, let's compare how noisily the New York Times is trumpeting the Ryan Adams story—which it first broke—with its long tendency to play down Epstein's crimes, along with his connection to the many powerful playmates whom he hosted at his getaway (none dare call it a neverland) in the Virgin Islands,and aboard his "Lolita Express."
And let us close by also noting that the Times, while taking every opportunityto yell "Me Too," has largely laughed off all reports of elite pedophilia, (said to be)committed not online but, hideously, in the flesh.