Okay, I Think I Like Sasha Frere-Jones Now

Sasha Frere-Jones, Screen Shot, The New Yorker, Feb. 6, 2012):

Why is pop music the only art form that still inspires such arrantly stupid discussion? The debates that surround authenticity have no relationship to popular music as it’s been practiced for more than a century. Artists write material, alone or with assistance, revise it, and then present a final work created with the help of professionals who are trained for specific and relevant production tasks. This makes popular music similar to film, television, visual art, books, dance, and related areas like food and fashion. And yet no movie review begins, “Meryl Streep, despite not being a Prime Minister, is reasonably convincing in ‘The Iron Lady.’”

On this theme — the centrality of “authenticity” and irrelevance of actual authenticity in pop-music — I also highly recommend Eljiah Wald’s How the Beatles Destroyed Rock ‘n’ Roll.