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In Defense of Billy Bob Thornton: When Context Isn't Truly Context

Posted: Apr 10, 2009

by Jim Markel

Jian Ghomeshi: I’m just trying to do a show and give people context for who you guys are.

Billy Bob Thornton:  There’s plenty of context without all that.

For those that want to dig a little deeper than the snippets and headlines, this exchange above lies at the root of an incident that currently surrounds one of our favorite artists here at Swampland.com, Billy Bob Thornton.

We’ve written “In Defense of” pieces before on Swampland.com, but they only have applied to sports. Our first one concerned Bobby Petrino and his move from the Atlanta Falcons to Arkansas. Perhaps it is only fitting that our first “In Defense of” outside of sports focuses on another Arkansas-related figure.

At this point, many of you have heard about or watched the YouTube video of Billy Bob Thornton’s on air disagreement with Canada’s CBC Radio host, Jian Ghomeshi, during a Boxmasters interview.  

The criticism from north of the border has been spirited.  Thornton has been called antagonistic amongst other things.  Perhaps the biggest overstatement has been Entertainment Weekly calling it an utterly bone-chilling radio interview.  Let's not let facts get in the way of hype, after all.

Just like our other “In Defense of” pieces, we are trying to provide a fuller perspective. We don’t like to see one of the most talented artists of our era being criticized unfairly for this incident.  The rest of the media may not have the time or inclination to look more deeply at what happened, but we do.  

Let's take a look point by point and try to help everyone view this situation in another way.

Myth #1:  Billy Bob Thornton's actions were weird or inexplicable - This is clearly false.  Anyone watching or listening to the interview can see by his actions that he was merely choosing not to participate in the interview.  This might be uncomfortable, but it is his right.

Simply put, he refused to answers certain questions.  At the same time, he allowed his Boxmasters bandmates to answer questions without interruption.   

Much has been made about Thornton's seemingly off topic answer regarding monster films and magazines, but any thinking person can see that he was making a point by going off topic.  Thornton clearly felt that the entire interview and segment was off topic because Ghomeshi led off by discussing Thornton's acting career.

Thornton explained his position about the interview very clearly after the fact for anyone who cared about hearing the explanation:

I sat down and talked with this guy. He and his producers say, `We promise you we won't say that' (meaning references to Thornton's acting career). The very first thing they said was that.

I don't really like sensationalism.  If you look someone in the eyes and promise them something, and you don't do it, you don't get the interview. That's the way it goes.

Interviews are always going to be tough to do when trust is lost between the interviewer and the subject of the interview.

The explanation of the issue in question concerning why Billy Bob wasn't participating in the interview came around the 8 minute mark which we will discuss in greater detail next.

Myth #2:  There wasn’t an previous understanding about the content of the interview - Let's go to the tape, as they say.  Here is an exchange from around the 8 minute mark of the interview segment:

Ghomeshi:  Well, it does occur to me that the producers told me that you didn’t want to talk… that we didn’t want to focus on questions around your acting career, etc.

Ok then, Mr. Ghomeshi, you do acknowledge that there was an understanding that talking about Thornton's acting career was not an agreed to discussion item.  However, Ghomeshi quickly defends his actions in the very next sentence:

Ghomeshi:   It does also occur to me that you’re a pretty new band and part of, …one of the reasons you get attention is because of the [acting] career you’ve had.

This premise of Ghomeshi's remains the central point of disagreement for anyone who cares to focus on the truth of the situation.  Although he never bothered to respond directly to this statement by Ghomeshi, he clearly disagrees with it completely and totally.

The fact that Thornton is famous goes without mention.  The idea that he has used his celebrity to overshadow the Boxmasters' music is totally false.

Myth #3:  Thornton's requests to not mention his acting career in the interview amount to censorship - This is absolutely ridiculous, but is an often unfortunate and expected position when anyone in the press wishes to find cover for his own incorrect actions.

Let's give Mr. Ghomeshi some equal time to explain his position after the interview in question: 

Our policy is that we don't allow anybody to tell us what we can and cannot say.  Beyond that, it was this notion and the language that he used during the interview that I thought was unfortunate, that we were `instructed' to say this and that. And I think that does raise interesting questions about ideas around how much journalism is to be controlled, especially when it comes to arts and entertainment and culture, and I think that that's a concern.

Wow!  Billy Bob Thornton really seems like an ominous guy, huh?  He's slowly trying to censor and control the Canadian press!  Um, no.  All you have to do is read how Ghomeshi wraps up his "controlling the media" case against Thornton:

The reality is, and I tried to explain this in the interview, these guys have only been together for two years. You just don't get the kind of national press they are getting without the incentive being something like his career past.... And I think if he could graciously accept that and say, `Hey, I want to focus on the music, but I get that the reason we're here is because I'm a movie star that's won an Oscar.' There's not a lot of people who can say that.

Let's repeat this - "The reason we're here is because I'm a movie star that's won an Oscar."  We're with Thornton in finding Mr. Ghomeshi's assertions both incorrect and demeaning.  

Since Mr. Ghomeshi has taken it upon himself to give his one-sided explanation surrounding the Boxmasters, let's put him under the microscope for a moment.  

Throughout this controversy it hasn't been widely reported, but Ghomeshi was a member of a music group called Moxy Fruvous, a Canadian band that received little to no notice in the USA despite being critically lauded in its home country.  In fact, their initial label, Atlantic Records, wouldn't release its second record in the US.  Moxy Fruvous has been on record in saying that they felt they weren't a priority at Atlantic.

Is it at all possible that Ghomeshi's own point of view is clouded by his own lack of success in America?  Could he be lashing out because he clearly perceives that Thornton's only musical success is due to his acting fame?

We find this idea of censorship to be one of the most egregious aspects to this whole "controversy" - especially when the person making these accusations isn't being examined in the same way as the person he is accusing. 

Myth #4: Thornton's position about acting questions was unreasonable - Again, we respectfully disagree.  The word "context" was thrown around a lot by Ghomeshi during this interview, so let's give a little context of our own.

This was an early morning interview/performance done during a run of Canadian dates in which the Boxmasters opened for Willie Nelson. For those that don’t understand this side of the entertainment business, radio appearances are supposed to be mutually beneficial arrangements in which the artist has a record to promote and the radio station gets an exclusive piece of audio (or in this case, video) to generate audience and interest for its station and host.

Despite the accusations of Ghomeshi that Thornton was trying to influence the questions, this is standard procedure.  Artists are not politicians. They don’t have to do radio interviews at all. They are done to promote things.

In fact, actors can get into trouble with studios when they do media (ie late night or morning shows) and DON’T promote the movie in question. Everyone understands this. The idea that interview ground rules aren’t previously established is not being honest with the public.

In the Boxmasters’ case, the idea was that the band was to perform a song at the beginning of the segment and then answers questions afterward. Billy Bob made it clear that he wanted to stay away from references about his acting career for a very good reason - that wasn't the point of the appearance.

The Boxmasters are a band.  The idea that Ghomeshi talking film and acting as a segue into the Boxmasters wouldn't have taken away from the band isn't accurate.  They only had 15 minutes.  If Thornton had allowed the "context" of the interview to be as Ghomeshi desired, the crux of the interview would have centered on how Billy Bob's celebrity has allowed him and the Boxmasters to have a musical career.

It is both Thornton's right and choice to have his notoriety take a back seat to the music of the Boxmasters.  It is the right and choice of Ghomeshi to want to ask questions that go against Thornton's wishes.  However, no thinking person can argue that the effect of Thornton's idea of the interview would have celebrated the Boxmasters while Ghomeshi's would have celebrated celebrity.  He said as much during the interview and in almost every statement afterwards.

We think it is honorable for Thornton to defend his bandmates no matter how uncomfortable it got in that studio.  He made his point.  Ghomeshi didn't like being called on it.

Myth #5:  Thornton dislikes Canadians - Ghomeshi isn't responsible for this one.  The Canadian press is.  

Around the 11 minute mark, after the air had been cleared and Thornton was answering questions again, he answered Ghomeshi's question about the eclectic nature of hte Boxmasters music by saying that Willie Nelson has an eclectic audience who could appreciate it.  Thornton next commented that he found Canadian audiences to be reserved which Ghomeshi immediately said, "we've heard that before."

This next led to Thornton making a deadpan humorous statement about the Boxmasters being used to audiences that throw things at each other.  This led to the following statement that has offended some in Canada:

"They just sort of sit there. And it doesn't matter what you say to 'em.... It's mashed potatoes but no gravy."

Again, listened to in context, it is clear that this is the only part of the interview where Thornton and Ghomeshi are talking and having a little bit of fun.

Remember, this interview is happening at 6am!  Most of the tone that you hear in Thornton's voice is that of fatigue.  He and the band are likely operating on only a few hours of sleep at this point.

Conclusion:  In the end, the idea that this was being compared to Joaquin Phoenix on David Letterman is wrongheaded . This incident was not a stunt or some weird emotional explosion by Thornton. It was clearly a disagreement between the show's producers, the host, and the Boxmasters.

It is the downside of celebrity that every word you say can be parsed or taken out of context.  Certainly, Thornton has had his moments of the harsh side of celebrity during his marriage to Angelina Jolie.  Since then, he has kept a relatively low profile by Hollywood standards.

We are unabashed supporters of Billy Bob Thornton, and his history tells why.  Every step of the way, he has fought to make his career a reality.  There were no easy steps - only self-created opportunity.  His biggest moment in film is Slingblade, a movie that he wrote and directed.  He has several other phenomenal screenplays to his credit.  He has also been a musician for decades previous to his move to Hollywood.  We could go on and on.

It is clear to us that Thornton asks only for respect in this interview gone wrong.  The fact that he won't allow a radio host to create his perception of reality - that Thornton is an actor posing as a musician - is something that should be lauded, not condemned.

We here at Swampland anxiously await the new Boxmasters album.  

 

We ask that all who are interested in hearing the Boxmasters great music to enter our Boxmasters contest.

 

 

 

 

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TVDTVD says...

PS a few days later Jimmy Kimmel gave an almost identical intro to BBT ( referring to his movie career) on his show during a Boxmaster promo interview and he didn't throw a hissy....

TVDTVD says...

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Speaking as a Canadian may I say that Billie Bob has certainly made things interesting. That's not always a bad thing. Keep on rockin' BB!

canadian1 says...

From both sides: BBT's own publicist Arnold Robinson " Robinson confirms that while it's true Thornton does not like to be asked about his movie career while he's out promoting his band, Ghomeshi was never "instructed" to avoid the topic. "Bottom line: We don't tell people what questions they can or cannot ask," Robinson says." and.... "Just to clarify questions around 'preconditions': the producers and host did NOT agree to any preconditions to not mention his acting career. As Jian Ghomeshi said in the interview, he was interested in talking to Billy Bob Thornton and the band about their music as well as having them perform. That's what we were aiming to do. Thank you, Arif Noorani Executive Producer Q on CBC Radio One" BBT lacks any credability on this.

Music Lover says...

The producers of the CBC show have gone on record that there was no such agreement. That I know. I've also read somewhere that one of BBT's promoters also confirmed that there was no pre arranged agreement. Although I can't corroberate the accuracy of that. So this assertion that someone looked BBT in the eye and promise something is just a flat out lie. Certainly, no one spoke to BBT personally. He even admitted so in the interview. I also find it hypocritical that BBT allows most interviewers to mention his acting career, (Jimmy Kimmel show last night for example), but singles out Jian and the CBC show to not mention it. I was intrigued by the description of their music. And I was feeling bad for the band in that interview and really believe that BBT did them a major disservice with his antics. But it really doesn't matter so much. I would not normally say this, as it really has nothing to do with this argument, but................ I caught their act on the Jimmy Kimmel show last night and they were terrible. One of the worst performances I've ever seen on a live tv show. They sounded extremely amateurish. The back ground vocals were off key. BBT's voice, thankfully, was barely audible. These guys are going nowhere. And this one thing, to me, has become painfully obvious, the ONLY reason ANYONE gives the Boxmasters any attention IS because BBT is a famous ACTOR. Hang on to your day jobs guys!!

Chase Wick says...

mogland I do see your point, but I it makes no sense why then, if it's as you say,would he even do the concerts or the interview. I don't think BBT 'hates' Canadians...that would be ...well just ridiculous and silly. I think BBT and his team have more important things to do than spend time pissing off Canadians or making a bad name for their band. I've not known musicians to play that game. Their only interests are to play their music. I learn today from Mr. Ghomeshi that he or the CBC producers ever discussed a request to not discuss BBT's other interests. Perhaps it was noted in his pre interview bio sent weeks ahead of his interview...who knows? I agree, Mr. Thornton acted like a nob and from the tape appears to have embarrassed his band members and put them on the spot. Not sure what to say...I do love the Boxmaster's music, would still love to see them live. I'm a believer from the horses mouth...lets get BBT and Mr. Ghomeshi together for a one on one...if not, nuff said.

mogland says...

Chase, please, do you remember when he insulted the fans that actually went to his shows and said that they were subdued no matter what you said to them - give me a break. He had a beef with Gomeshi and then took it out on Canadians as a whole. Why would Canadians want to bother with a musician who doesn't want them at his shows? If he had just said - listen - lets focus on the music, and perhaps had the band answer most of the questions - we would've all been behind him. But it's the insults Chase - that really got to us all.

Chase Wick says...

I really see BBT's point....and I'm a Canadian. This interview was about the band, not about one particular musician. Mr. Thornton obvious feels a great passion and kinship to the other band members. They are all equal artists in his eyes. BBT asked not to bring his other side gig (acting) into the interview because it was not about that. It was an interview where all band members were on an equal playing field, all with rich history in music, all with great experience and all equally talented. Once Mr. Gohmeshi discussed the side gig, which he was asked not to discuss, it made the story about BBT and not about the Boxmasters...a situation which would be unfair to the other band members who have worked their asses off and created some great music along with band member BBT. There was no need to discuss acting or Oscars. CBC should have honoured that request to leave BBT's side gig out. I only hope that BBT's decision to not participate in the interview was a pre-decided group action and didn't in any way piss off the other band members. Perhaps BBT would have been best to stand up and excuse himself, but I suppose at that moment the Boxmaster focus had shifted and it no longer mattered. This was a CBC/Boxmaster issue and it's unfortunate that those ticket holders who wanted to hear their music had to be involved. I suspect this situation affected many others including Mr. Nelson. I would have expected better from CBC's Gohmeshi. He of all people has interviewed countless bands who have played their music, who have shared their songs with audiences without a member with an Oscar winning side gig. On behalf of all, Mr. Thornton, I get it, and I am sorry for my fellow Canadian's disregard to honour a simple request.

lenwood says...

Thornton is a chump. If there really was a disagreement, why not just clarify the point and move on so that the interview can be constructive. Or, you could act like a pissy bitch and draw a hell of a lot of negative press. Lets hope the Boxmasters disband soon so the other musicians can move on with their careers and let Thornton cry on his own. If this is how he treated his wives its no wonder he's been married 4 times.

xeny_1 says...

Billy acted like the stereotypical ugly American. He made the mistake of thinking Jian was the B team because he wasn't a whiteboy instead of a respected mainstream journalist. He deserves all the derision and hate comments he's getting. Not that BB's any big thing but if Paul McCartney started to act would he throw a two year old's fit because a journalist asked him about his music career for some context?

mogland says...

When a musician goes to a foreign country hoping for support & interest in his band, and then goes on national radio and insults the actual fans that were AT his shows and Canadians as a whole (mashed potatoes without gravy) - what the hell does he expect!? OF COURSE the band is going to be booed. I think that BBT will most likely be booed in Canada for the rest of his musical career. How would Americans treat a foreign musician if he/she did that!?!?! Give me a break!

bigbabythorton says...

Let's compare the grace of Susan Boyle with BBT. What your article fails to address is that the camera cannot hide a persons personality. BBT shows himself to be self-centered, immature, petulant, and as anyone can see a very big baby. I doubt that someone like him will understand that he is lacking in humility and grace. But hopefully he will be negatively affected in his musical pursuits as a result of his character. Because what is shown in the video is not a disagreement or his personal response of choice... of course he can act anyway he chooses... but what is shown is BBT the person. This is clearly the result of his having power for many years. Abraham Lincoln said.. judge a person not by how they act under adversity, but how they act when they have power. BBT has shown his true nature. It is a shame that your article does not have the courage to not this. 50 million hits for Susan Boyle... cancelled tour for BBT.

tarwater says...

While an avid listener of CBC, I'm not a huge Ghomeshi fan. Still, Thornton was petulant. There's no way to justify his pouty non-participation. If he didn't want to be interviewed, he should have turned it over to his band-mates, excused himself and left. What he did was a huge dis-service to his fellow band mates. I did enjoy the instrumental version of the song they played and subsequently went to the band's site to check out their music. After hearing Billy Bob sing, I realize he's done more of a dis-service to the band with his voice. Ditch your drummer. I'll buy a CD of your music sans BBT anyday. To mis-quote the Cracker song," we need another egomaniac actor turned singer like we need a hole in the head."

funniously says...

Hey Penalty Boxmasters - your captain deserves 5 minutes for Unsportsmanlike Conduct!

KevinP says...

You can also clearly see that the other band menbers were uncomfortable with Billy Bob's antics. If they were all pissed with the "Acting intro", wouldn't they have clammed up as well?

KevinP says...

Context this! Maybe you don't understand how R-A-D-I-O works. Q is primarily a radio show. And to put that in context - you usually don't see faces of the people talking in a radio interview. So if Ghomeshi is doing an interview (where no one sees the faces of the guests) and doesn't let his audience know that the "Billy Bob" he's interviewing – yes, the one who's ego barely fits inside the studio – is the same one as the actor – of same proportioned ego – then he would be doing his audience a disservice.

Kafir_Kanuck says...

Thornton doesn't understand Canadian culture or the CBC. Artists like Thornton think the media is there just as onther method to have a new product on the market. That is not what the CBC is about. There may have been an understanding, but it was not to ask questions about his acting or other shite he may have done. And besides, CBC policy doesn't allow for interviewees to set interview policy. The CBC is not some slavouring station being done a favour by having a self important ash-hole like Thornton on the air. The CBC did Thornton a favour by having HIM on. And we all know how he childishly thanked the CBC for the exposure. And besides, the band sucks live anyway, no matter how much gravy you give it.

fasteddie1313 says...

I really wish you would stick to the "facts" in your defense of BBT. You state: "Our goal wasn't to inflame anything further, but to instead, explain the context of what was happening during the interview. Again, it is not "controlling" the press to lay out ground rules for an interview." Firstly, if you lay out all these "ground rules" then it's not really a journalistic interview, it's merely another advertisement managed by the PR company. There are lots of media outlets in the States that are happy accommodate stars, but fewer in Canada. But the MAIN PROBLEM with your statement is that it's false: Ghomeshi NEVER asked Thorton about his acting career. He introduced that band and said that BBT was indeed the 'actor, director and screenwriter" in case the audience was wondering. This is called "context". All of his questions were specifically about music (when did the band form? What were your musical interests growing up?). In fact, the same kind of questions he would have asked Tom Petty. BBT's behaviour was childish, and their website's statement about canceling dates because of the "flu" is cowardly. I was really thinking of buying some of their music, but after the interview and their fleeing the country, I think I'll pass. Your "defense" of BBT is embarrassing to your own credibility and most of your respondents have told you so.

jonschaper says...

Wow. Talk about an ironic title considering that this response does as much as possible to take the interview out of context. Just watch the damn thing on YouTube for yourself: Jian merely mentioned Billy Bob's acting career in passing in the intro then asked nothing but legitimate and relevant questions about MUSIC and the Boxmasters. Here's a more accurate assessment of what happened: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090415.wrussell0416/BNStory/Entertainment/home

Wicked Felina says...

I'm open minded...I heard about swampland's defence of Billy Bob and must say I was a fan so had to give it a read, but my opinion remains completely unswayed. I respect Jian and the only good thing that came out of this incident is the fact that Billy Bob crawled back over the border where he belongs in bars where people throw things at him. He's a pompous ass and that's all that can be said in his defense. If he'd like to come back, I'm sure there are a few Canadians that would be lining up to throw things at him too...maybe some mashed potatoes and gravy. Thanks anyways.

Sarah Bee says...

Billy KNOB Thornton. What a tool! I admire a journalist who doesn't bow to a spoiled, wannabe, washed up celebrity with a second rate band. The Boxmasters would still be practicing in his garage and playing tiny venues were it not for Thornton's previous success in acting. This is where public broadcasting is at its best - no corporate need to kiss ass every which way to get table scraps from the famous or the powerful. Kudos to the interviewer here for being diplomatic while still holding his own and shame on Billy for disgracing and humiliating his band-mates like that. What is that nasty scent you're wearing, Billy? Envy, by Tom Petty?

alison says...

I believe this "Jim Bob Markell" is no more than a suck up to Billy Bob. Billy made a huge mistake, for whatever reason, but Jim Bob just made our US/Canada relations all the more worse with his article. As a former Canadian now living in NEw Jersey, I am also a fan of old southern rock, and a reader of Gritz. I just can't believe Swampland would get involved in this national enquirer b.s. Signed, a disappointed fan of Billy Bob Thornton and Swampland.

Nariya says...

The fact of the matter is that the Boxmasters were getting publicity and Thornton, as a man who is often in the public eye, should have known better than to be so openly ticked off about whatever the interviewer said. It doesn't matter who was right. He, of all people in that room, should have known that the media is always waiting for something to talk up, and it was in the best interests of the Boxmasters that ALL the members of the band be gracious and entertaining. His bandmates did a much better job than he did, despite his greater experience with the media. Maybe he was so angry that he didn't care-- but he's kind of doomed the Boxmasters now, unless they pull out something chart-topping. And seriously, Thornton? Tom Petty? How about Elvis or Madonna or The Who while you're at it?

slingemaster says...

What. An. Asshole. "You were instructed not to talk about that"? Puh-lease. Why do PR if you're just going to put people off. And it's true, the Joaquin Phoenix comparison is unfair. That was at least sort of funny and JP was making fun of himself. BBT just comes off as a pouty celebrity throwing a hissy fit because he found a brown M&M in the bowl.

catbat says...

Poor BillyBobBooHoo, I would have listened to his music with great interest, but I saw the interview, and he was so disgusting and rude, the only thing I will remember or hear will be just more of his crap, so I wont even bother, as for any new films, dare I mention, if he does venture in that direction, I won't be interested in any of his work, since he is obviously a total jerk and no longer worth it !!

atlantic says...

Well apparently the interview was actually at 10 AM not 6 AM, and Billy Bob actually pulled focus totally away from the band - for good or bad reasons - in particular when he refused to play music with them. CBC is like NPR - public radio I think it may be not the end of the Radio Station if Billy Bob refused to go to an interview. However he went and no one is talking about the fantastic music of the band are they?

OttawaCanada says...

Hello everyone Did BBT and the boys get over the flu in time for the show last night (04/14/2009) in Stamford(?) CT?

agilent says...

BBT is a pompous twit. Good riddance!

southernbelle says...

Disappointed! I can"t believe how much swampland is kissing Billy Bob's ass!!! If the said muisican isn't interested in talking about stuff, like his life (in whatever context that may be) get the hell out of there! Dont book interviews. Don't do any media period. What a giant baby he is! He needs to lighten up and relax. Life is too short to get so hung up on himself.

fulldisclosure88 says...

Wow. Poor article. Clearly you're in bed w/ BBT. A simple search of your site proves you folks at Swampland drool over anything he touches. Biased anyone? Also, Jian Ghomeshi never asked him a question about movies, film, directing, acting etc. Just introduces the band with a little bit of knowledge about one of their members. Have you heard of the phrase "Elephant in the room"??? It's not like the whole interview was about BBT... just acknowledging that an Oscar winner (!!!) was in the room. Not exactly many of them in bands today. Finally, your conclusion solidifies the ridiculousness of your argument. The entire reason swampland respects BBT is because he IS an actor and has made MOVIES like Slingblade and "several other phenomenal screenplays"... but oh ya he was a musician before that. It's time for swampland to remove their lips from Billy Bob's tit, take a step back, and examine the situation for what it really is: 1) BBT was unnecessarily rude. It's ok. Just admit it. Apologize and move on. 2) Swampland has no right to question the journalistic integrity of Jian Ghomeshi when it has none itself due it's inherent bias and blatant false statements evident in the article. But you got what you wanted... hits on your website. More money in your pocket. Get off your high horse. Your just like the rest of them.

zatoichi101 says...

I watched the entire interview and from the Get Go, I thought Billy Bob Thornton was acting like a POUTY LITTLE GIRL! Jeez, what an absolute baby. Lost ALL respect for him. The interviewer was asked not to dwell on his movie and acting -- and he DIDN'T! Other than a brief mention to the fact that he IS an Academy Award Winning Actor/Director/etc, the interviewer only talked about the music. The Baby was the one who made a big deal out of nothing. Old Man Billy Bob never gave him a chance. I thought the interview came out of this smelling like a rose -- he did an excellent job of keeping his composure and handling the silly tantrum like a pro. The Old Man -- well, he looked like a Little Girl. What a pussy. (Oh! And here's an answer to the Old Man's question of whether we would ask Tom Petty a similar question. YES!!! IF Tom Petty decided to be an actor! And, by the way, Billy Boy -- YOU are no Tom Petty! What an ego.)

A Long Time Fan says...

Swampland.com: Why don't you do some clean up on your site, particularly the comments section? Removing the insipid, redundant, and childish posts of 'billybobwho? (he displays a maturity level of BB during the recent interview) might be conducive to continuing to receive comments on this subject. Of course, that is assuming that you are actually interested in receiving new comments and are not in fact trying to discourage additional comments. Which may indeed be the case since so many of the posts seem to be as unflattering to your 'defense' article as they are to BB. If the latter is the case, just leave 'em there.

omwomw says...

The strategy is pretty clear at this point. Write off Canada, 'cause after all it's just Canada, and move on. That said, a great number of Americans have watched this video, watched Thornton's bald faced lie to a reporter about the mashed potatoes comment, listened to the "flu" nonsense, and most of all taken in the fact that Thornton has allowed this transparent and disingenuous "defense" to speak for him. I think the whole outfit and it's pet website is dreaming if it doesn't realize that a whole lot of people everywhere are going to be listing to Thornton's fuckin'-cheatin'-lyin'-and-drinkin' music and just thinking "coward".

res08hao says...

1 . The boxmasters are maginally talented. 2. Thornton is CLEARLY a stoned psychotic. 3. thornton is marginally talented. 4. I will never buy one of these moronic cds. 5. swampland is bought and paid for.

manitoba1 says...

Anyone who has listened to Jian Ghomeshi's daily interviews will know that his introductions are informed, thorough and respectful. He only stated that the band were getting the attention due to Billy Bob's acting career when pushed by Billy Bob. This is national coast to coast radio after all and every cowshit and whiskey indie band that comes along does not get that exposure. By the way, does anyone know the name of the recorded track they played before the interview was called? It was not heard again on the you tube interview. That's good cowshit and whiskey music. Swampland, what does this mean from above: "Billy Bob made it clear that he didn’t wanted to stay away from references about his acting career … "didn’t wanted?" Myth number 6 Mr. Ghomeshi's lack of success in the USA and resentment about it is pure baloney. It is possible to be successful in another country, make a good living as a songwriter and radio host and be known for it there only. Most Americans don't even know where Canada is, like the hitch-hiker I picked up in Virginia when told Canada was another country: "Y'all mean like Japan?" Well no, not really.

catecate says...

Southern fried or what? The man is an idiot and a real crass piece of work. His performance in Canada sucked big time, and this so called defence does too.

JJoanne says...

Now there is a t shirt to commerate this event... http://jam.canoe.ca/Movies/2009/04/13/9103391-sun.html

golygi says...

Swampland claims that Billy Bob Thornton's fame has not been used to promote the Box Masters. Look at their promo photos. Since when did a drummer get such up front status in band photos. They are clearly milking BBT's status. He could have been so much less obtuse and stated his high respect for his bandmates' talents and asked the interviewer to please address them, because after all, as he said, he's just the drummer.

OttawaCanada says...

I read early today on an entertainment reporter's blog that, as per Willy road crew, it was Willy who sent BBT home. Roadie said that they were tired of BBT's atitude back stage. This is not verified at this point, but if true, it explains the hastly departure and the FLU excuse while at the same time knowing they would be all better from the flu in time for their April 14th return, when Willy's tour returns to USA.

says...

Your defense is weak. This reads as if it was written by BBT's PR people. It is total crap. Now what BBT's PR people should have done is told the little petulant shit to apologize - right off the bat, not continue to call a DJ names, make up more lies, try to "frame" the discussion... just f'n apologize to the DJ... cause it was to him that BBT was a ass. Eat some humble pie and it might have gone away. Its just like when the police end up seeing a video taken by some schmuck of them beating someone - it doesn't lie. They will try to squirm, make stuff up so that it doesn't sound as bad. But in the end, its on the video.

cassie says...

Bravo longtime fan and John Moore. (though the multiiple postings of lontime fans was a bit annoying billybob who). An apology can go a long way. Everyone has a bad day. But at the moment, Mr. Thornton just keeps digging himself deeper and deeper into a hole. Don't wait too long or it will just get deeper. Nor do I expect this will just blow over and be forgotten when next you might find yourself touring in Canada. Be a man, and face up to your mistake. Canadians can be very forgiving, but you need to be sincere. This isn't the time to be stubborn.

billybob who? says...

Is that crap head wearing a hair piece? Or, is that hairpiece wearing crap? Isn't he a little old to be starting a band? Shouldn't he at his age be adjusting his adult diapers and getting enemas? Why would any parent name their kid Billy Bob? Geeesh it just perpetuates the worlds view and opinion on toothless, smoking, cursing, never been to school or at least graduated from the 3rd grade mindset. Billy Bobby just keeps this view alive and well. What a maroon. Johm Moore, John Moore, John Moore, John Moore, John..

Sandra says...

From Swampland's own site - Billy Bob Thornton : Six Degrees of Swampland: "Besides being one of the finest actors, directors and screenwriters of our time, Billy Bob Thornton is also a recording and touring musician.........." Just curious guys, why the need to mention his acting, directing and screenwriting? Shouldn't his amazing musical talent speak for itself? Or does that logic only apply for Canada?

zallen says...

I notice that regardless of the NUMEROUS commenters who have corrected the factual inaccuracies in Swampland's post, it remains uncorrected.

billybob who? says...

"John Moore, john moore, john moore, john moore.." sing it Michael Jackson..."John Moore, john moore, john moore, john moore.."

billybob who? says...

How come Billie Bo Bobby Off The Tallahasee Bridge isn't responding personally on this. Why is Swampland? Who is Bobby Billie Horton anyway? Is he famous or something? What has he done: hero, soldier, doctor, teacher, rolemodel for youth, police officer, truck driver, white collar and blue collar worker, talented muscician like BB King or ____fill in blank? Please don't tell me he is a punk with a guitar and amplifier in his garage or basement (why do I think of Waynes World...excellent! Shwing) trying to create a band that will be famous? Hey Boobie Bobbie Bobo be careful you DON'T ELECTROCUTE YOURSELF or we'll have a good sequal to whatever that movie is where you played the ummmmm? SHIT HEAD.

sholmes says...

BBT is just another selfish diva who thinks he can treat people like s**t if he feels like. The situation could have been handled so much more professionally if BBT had any idea what that meant. BBT totally overreacted and embarassed himself, but more importantly his band. After being booed during his next Canadian performance I'm thrilled to hear they cancelled the rest of their Canadian dates. For those BBT fans out there, please keep this excuse for an entertainer within your borders.

john moore says...

oh, and why the heck is an interviewer not allowed to mention bbt's acting career when it is so blatantly a part of his own website. hypocritical at least. trying to erase the past at best. in practice i've always found people who refuse to discuss something are often guilty or embarassed by it and that's why they hide. i can understand him being embarrassed by his career but you can't erase it from the minds of your fans or the public. i'm glad your proud of your music, and if i didn't think you were such a dolt i'd consider buying them, but i never would now, just because of who you are.

john moore says...

bbt could've left the studio during the introduction. actions speak louder than words. but he stayed instead, and instead of being a brave man and calling the interviewer to 'play by bbt's rules' he simply misdirected in confusing and ill conceived manner. he was in a bad mood, it's understandable with the hours they do interviews not always in keeping with the hours music folk keep. when you're tired and angry just walk away bbt, instead of appearing to be drunk or on drugs as so many have alleged. no you stayed, you insult the interviewer, you insult the media outlet, you put your fellow band members on the spot. then you make fun of willy's audience 'bikers and old people' ... let me tell you, willy has fans of all ages and backgrounds for his musical talent and for the manner in which he conducts himself. charlie pride is part of the same tour; check out the latest news on him reimbursing a fan ripped of by the ticket outlet. bbt you simply have no business touring with these men and their band members. in fact i'd suggest you have no place in canada anymore either. just a thought, but what about a humble apology for ill-thought and frustrated comments made in not your finest hour? we've all messed up, we say sorry... it's just a bigger deal when you do it on tv, but you're good at tv so it shouldn't be a problem for you. i don't like seeing you in hot water so please end it fast, and watch your mouth, even when you're not on tv you're famous and people are paying attention... if you don't like that, then acting and music might not be the careers for you. c'mon bbt, everybody's watching now show them your a man rather than just saying the other guy's an '*******' .... and in appologizing remember that actions speak louder than words... so act like you mean it.

stixx3969 says...

Hmmm, I guess it could make one wonder why Billy Bob's musical contract rider clearly states they are to be billed as: "Billy Bob Thornton with special guests the "Boxmasters" If he weren't a reasonably famous actor nobody would know or care who "Billy Bob Thornton" was unless he did indeed make his bones as musician. Seems to me he will use his acting cred to try and buy musical cred when it's convienient for him. BB, you came off like an arrognat prick, just like "Wacking" Phoenix did on letterman. http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0410092billybob1.html

DebunkingMyths says...

Guess my comment didn't make it. Just wanted to point out that Mr. Thornton, in my view, does not respect his "Hillbilly" roots. Having spent some time in Appalachia, I have found its citizens to be, for the most part, charming, funny (in a self-deprecating way, like Canadians) and very polite. Some were smart, some not. Just like the rest of Americans and Canadians, as a matter of fact. Aren't you Southerners tired of being pictured as ignorant, ill-bred, illiterate people by the likes of Mr. Thornton who exploits his roots for his gain? I'm Acadian, Cajun to you folks, and don't you know? Like you, we didn't all star in Deliverance. BBT, you should apologize to the proud Hillbillies you call your brethren. Mash pertaters to you too!

jhenry says...

Ghomeshi's comments speak to the obvious. Of course the band will be known first because of BBT, and all he said was it was "one of the reasons" they are known when it is plainly the obvious reason. This is mild in comparison to the flagrant rudeness on the other side of the table. Your factually incorrect spin also failed to mention after they reconciled and the host even apologized (for nothing) he still walked off the interview without saying thank you and called the host an asshole publicly in front of 10,000 concert goers. Are you kidding me? You can't defend the indefensible.

DebunkingMyths says...

Billy Bob Thornton gives 'Hillbillies' a bad name. I, for one, am tired of Hollywood and 'recovered' Hillbillies (as someone from Arkansas has called Mr. Thornton), taking advantage of their roots to portray Southerners as ignorant and in-bred, just because it sells, as Mr. Thornton did in Slingblade. Aren't you Southerners tired of it all? I'm a Canadian who lived in the American South for several years. I found so-called 'Hillbillies' for the most part polite, intelligent and engaging, some highly educated, some not. Just like the rest of us - Canadians and Americans. My American cousins are Cajuns, and we go way back to 1755 and they get tarred with the same brush. Thornton, do your people proud, or don't bring them down with you by hiding being the 'Hillbilly', 'mash pertatoes' thing. Some of us just don't buy it.

Lorraine says...

Oh please.. do you really expect us to believe this article in defense of Billy Bob? He behaved like a pompous baby and he can kiss his Canadian fans goodbye. You don't visit Canada to perform and then dump on their National radio station host with silly, rebellious antics and expect no repercussions. There is no place for "diva Billy" in the music community. I hope his band dumps him and finds someone a little less pompous. They seemed like decent guys.

chuckycheese says...

Regardless of what BBT claims, that interview did NOT occur at 6AM, but actually 9AM. Not sure why BBT claimed it was so early....perhaps they had to get up that early to get to the radio station... Also, Ghomeshi did not ASK any questions regarding his acting career. It was one line in his eloquent introduction that mentions his acting career, which let's be honest is a big part of the reason why this band is playing the gigs it gets.

shiftysam says...

beyond billybob I think you have to look at the other signs......the band looked scared and whipped.........i think this is a clear indication they are touring with someone whos' mood creates a toxic working condition....

sycophant-land says...

How clever of you... the Boxmasters have posted this article on their website, with a link to your site. Understandable, since this is pretty much the only post on the whole web that supports Billy Bob's dickish, unprofessional behavior. Never mind that you've provided this "support" based on a mass of factual errors (i.e. lies). Any chance your site traffic has increased a wee bit since then? Well done!

brosfab says...

First off how the hell did this guy end up with Angelina Jolie must of knocked her on the head with a club that would explain the vial of blood he carried . Im not big fan of his acting iether its kinda like mashed potatoes with out gravy , his sling blade charactor I believe was fashioned after his dad this is just what I heard so don't quote me on it.

peternut1 says...

I viewed the Q TV band interview with Billy Bob Thorton and his band. It is quite obvious after watching and listening, that there was an agreement ahead of time as to the subject matter to be discussed. Billy Bob is obviously pissed off due to the breach of this agreement; mashed potatoes and gravy aside. I use to live and work in the USA. If you have ever experienced the USA, it is really like mashed potatoes with a lot of gravy. The excitement at events as big as a Billy Bob concert to as small as the local town football team is infectious to say the least. Americans know how to have a good time. As a Canadian with an American bloodline I would have to agree with Billy Bob Thorton. We Canadians need more gravy. Tim Wall President Peternut Comics http://www.peternut.com/

WR2009 says...

Who does this AH think he is? I've always considered him some redneck freak (after all he WAS married to Angelina and wore a vial of her blood didn't he?) and now he comes up here and insults us Canadians? Mashed potatoes are we? We gave music people like Neil Young, Rush, The Hip, Diana Krall, kdlang and the late Jeff Healey as well as such successful songwriters as Joni Mitchell and Paul Anka. I'm glad this idiot was booed in Toronto. Hey BBT, if you're reading these posts, stay in the US. You'll never know how great this country is and that's cool with us. Frankly, we don't need your insults. Save your band tips and put it toward your economy or your wars. Play in places where people throw things at each other. I'm sure the collective IQ of those establishments would be astounding. I'd rather eat plain mashed potatoes than be smothered with rancid gravy!

OttawaCanada says...

Hello Cheryl It is not Calgary and Vancouver that are missing out. The two shows BBT and his group skipped out on where to be in Montreal, Quebec and London, Ontario.

OttawaCanada says...

HELLO ADDICK, Ronny Hawkins has never insulted Canadians on a national scale as BBT has. BBT made comments about mashed poatatos and gravy on a national radio show and on the Boxmasters' MySpace made negative comments on Kingstonians getting their Canadian dollars worth of entertianment or "whatever they call it up here". BBT is insulting and ignorant all at the same time to a country, Canada. Many Canadians are getting tired of Americans coming up here and not understanding or knowing anything about Canada while at the same time Canadian boys are dying for a war on terror started by the USA and run by the USA and we as long time allies stand with them. So does it have anything to with Canada/USA ralations it certainly does. When any American, or a Canadian, is visiting the other the country and takes to the mass media they have to be respectful to the audience. With over 1.4 million views of the interview in 4 days on YouTube, BBT has done damage to the relationship but mostly to himself. I hope he never comes back, he never even tried to apologize, he just jumped on plane fly home to mama.

Cheryl says...

I think Gomeshi and the CBC are riding this to improve their ratings and it is somewhat of a payback for the Red Eye comments. If they had gone on The Hour with George, none of this would have happened. I saw the show in Ottawa and The Boxmasters rocked it. Willie and Ray were awesome too. It is a shame that they can't finish the Canadian part of their tour, Calgary and Vancouver are missing out on a great up and coming act. http://tarotcanada.org/WillieNelsonRayPriceBoxmastersConcertReview.html

Dan Dan says...

This band is completely without talent, and Hillbilly Bob is a disgrace.

Addick says...

Just a further note to the posting below, this bruhaha really has nothing to do with USA/Canada relations or whatever, it is entirely about somebody acting like a complete boob and embarrassing not only himself but his hardworking bandmates, who were very obviously dismayed by his antics. About 50 years ago, another musician from Arkansas hit Toronto and environs (actually it was Hamilton)and his name is Ronnie Hawkins! He not only made a ton of friends with his great band (Levon Helm was the drummer.....went on to form "The Band" with some other Canadian guys), but is STILL here, becoming a Canadian music legend and much beloved by many. I am sure he is thrilled with the behaviour exhibited by this Arkansas nit-wit. I hope the lads get over the flu!

Rockabillette says...

I confess I have no patience for any defense of BBT, or, sadly, the Boxmasters. What is really getting to me, though, is how utterly disrespectful of the other band members he was, and that they have put up with this! BBT's snit should disqualify him from playing with the band, let alone on the same bill as Willie Nelson or Ray Price! My bid is for the Boxmasters to re-form as something cooler, ditch the act that 'cosmic cowboy' music is uniquely theirs or new and more than just kooky suits and groovy graphics on their website,and cut BBT. Stuart Baker has the chops to head a serious band which could fill barrooms, theaters and stadiums. And: he can kinda sing some good too! Oh, and BBT, please don't come back to Canada.

Addick says...

Definition: Ignoranus..........one who is not only incredibly stupid, but is also an arsehole! BBT, my man, you fully qualify! Who the hell are the Boxmasters when they're home? BBT said they normally play places where they throw things. The Massey Hall crowd should have come armed with rotten eggs!

jhenry says...

This is crazy. No questions were asked about acting or BBT's other struggling career. Bad News Bears LOL. This was on par with a patron picking a fight with a waiter who is bound by manners and decorum. Any where else and they would have thrown the boor out of the building. On another level, he could have acted with the maturity of someone half his age and kindly requested no further mention of his background, god forbid. On a final level the guy is a fucking idiot as a businessman.

Geoff363 says...

One correction for the article. The interview wasn't done at 6am - according to Jian Ghomeshi, interviewed the next day, it was something like 10am, and it was live across Canada. I don't know exactly what happened before the interview - maybe some misinterpretation about what Billy Bob truly expected. But hearing the interview on the radio didn't exactly want me to go out and buy the band's CD, even though it was a genre that sounded interesting. If Billy Bob was displeased with the introduction, there were other ways he could have handled it. In the end it was their loss. It was an opportunity to be introduced to a whole new audience, and judging by the 10,000 youtube comments, they blew it. BTW, the host never suggested that music was just a hobby for BBT. BBT is being oversensitive here.

wsbrown says...

It doesn't really matter what was said or not during the interview. All exposure is good exposure when you are attempting to instantiate a brand. The currency here is emotional involvement, good or bad. Emotion sells; indifference doesn't. BB certainly knows this after being in the entertainment industry as long as he has. Who better to rile up than the Canadians. After all, they're so polite. Billy Bob, in one of your interviews you once said that you idolized Tom Waits and wanted to meet him. You said he was a true original and a class act. Do you think he would have acted this childishly if he was in the same situation?.. Who are you really Billy Bob? Behaving badly doesn't make you interesting. It makes me less interested in you and your products. Smarten up.

wsbrown says...

It doesn't really matter what was said or not during the interview. All exposure is good exposure when you are attempting to instantiate a brand. The currency here is emotional involvement, good or bad. Emotion sells; indifference doesn't. BB certainly knows this after being in the entertainment industry as long as he has. Who better to rile up than the Canadians. After all, they're so polite. Billy Bob, in one of your interviews you once said that you idolized Tom Waits and wanted to meet him. You said he was a true original and a class act. Do you think he would have acted this childishly if he was in the same situation?.. Who are you really Billy Bob? Behaving badly doesn't make you interesting. It makes me less interested in you and your products. Smarten up.

Heather says...

If the man wasn't on any mind altering drugs, then he is either in the beginning stages of early onset dimentia or he is, plain and simple, an arrogant , self centered jerk, worthy of no more than a few seconds of thought. Few seconds are over............. Nice weather we are having !

sluggo says...

opening for willie and ray, getting to play such wonderful venues as Massey Hall[which has been a showcase for everyone from Charlie Parker to The Cream] Billy Bob should have been thrilled to be part of such a great opportunity , but NOOOOOO.. had to turn a promo interview into a spoiled brat tantrum..tsk tsk...funny I saw your interviews on other talk show such as Letterman and you were more than keen to discuss both aspects of your career...

NYMafia says...

In Defense of...REALLY? This guy put himself in the same league as Tom Petty with a cover band! I think his first love is, Dick. He was acting like one and, imitation is envy. Please get real. The interviewer introduced him and his background - Big Deal. He hurt his band here. They won't get any respect from anyone who watched it. Nor should they. They are a high school dance band and nothing more.

chase20 says...

I don't care what context you are talking about. Anyone who viewed the entire interview will be outraged at the arrogance displayed by this small minded eccentric "Silly Bob". The radio host showed complete class in the way he handled this so called actor who has an unbelievably reckless personality. I am embarrased he is an American. Now he does not even have the balls to admit the real reason he cancelled the balance of the Canadian shows. THE FLU? YEA RIGHT!!! I hope he get booed off the stage at the rest of the US shows. He needs to develop a bit of humility. No excuses for acting like that.

billybobego says...

First who the hell names their moron kid Billy Bob? Perhaps incestuous "parents"? Anyway, this bottom feeder cannot play or sing and is tone deaf. He is fortunate he found an interviewer at all to waste a minute interviewing trash head. Clearly no one is interested in this no talent "musician" - insult to real muscians so no wonder the interview was directed to his acting career. Appears this bottom feeder is still acting (cough, sniff, flu). Come Bobby Billygoat you can do a better excuse than "the dog ate my homework" lame. It was best you left Canada and headed back to the south with your own kind..sweaty, sticky..stinky..musty,,,ass cheeks sticking together so you walk funny like Mammie Yokum. Yup Bobby Billy Bo you sure are a work of art. Now fuck off and don't return to Canada...unitl you IQ reaches 2. For southerners like you that would get you into Mensa.

swimmamum says...

Arrogant journalism, Sid? You've got to be kidding me? I heard it first and I couldn't believe they were interviewing BBT. The I watched the video and thought, who the hell is this guy? A musician worthy of an interview on the CBC, you've got to be kidding me? Now, I won't watch his films , listen to his music or ever, ever, hit swampland up for "news" again. You guys are ridiculous, with your list of myths. ugh! Talk about arrogant journalism. Is this journalism?

londondave says...

Hello again! Here's a laugh, just returned from the "official" Billy Bob Site billybobapalooza. In the upper right hand corner of the home page is an image of his star on the walk of fame....hmmm?! Maybe just to provide context.

londondave says...

It's interesting to me that Mr.Thornton, while denying any special privelege as a result of his acting career, should act so violated. He owes the Canadian public an apology, if not for his statements or actions than for wasting air time on our National Radio. Or at least apologize to the thousands of Canadian Bands who'd give their right arms for such exposure and not limit the questions. To call Billy Bob spoiled is an understatement, it seems to me (one of his fans) that his sense of entitlement belies a fundamental inability to "pay his dues" ...at least musically.

American Boy says...

Great actor, but also a great jerk.

American Boy says...

I have been a fan of BBT's acting. However, no one should be making apologies for his ridiculous behavior in this interview. He showed himself to be an arrogant, immature jerk. As an American who appreciates our Canadian allies, I was ashamed by his anti-Canadian comments and overall condescending attitude. If he is offended for his acting to even be mentioned, then why the big ego? Isn't he just a regular "hillbilly" if we take away all the fame and fortune from his acting? He certainly acted like an overpaid movie star. Kudos to the interviewer for his professiionalism. I felt embarrassed for Billy Bob's bandmates who looked like they wanted to crawl away. And shame on those who are so infatuated with BBT's acting talents to call him out for his childish, egotistical behavior. The man is a great actor, but looks to be a great jerk as well.

cassie says...

From your closing statement "It is clear to us that Thornton asks only for respect in this interview gone wrong. The fact that he won't allow a radio host to create his perception of reality - that Thornton is an actor posing as a musician - is something that should be lauded, not condemned." Listen to the darn interview. Not once did Jian claim that Thornton was an actor posing as a musician, but that one of the musicians in the Boxmasters was also a well known actor and screenwriter. You don't consider Thornton being a talanted musician, actor and screenwriter is mutually exclusive, why assume Jian did? This was a golden oppurtunity for those who weren't aware of musical talents of Thornton's, (despite Thornton's many years of experience in music) to learn about it, and the music the Boxmasters love. And Thornton wasted the opportunity, and then had to go on being insulting to the interviewer and audience. Sorry, I can't respect that.

dkwtwo says...

thank you billy bob for showing some real human emotion and not just playing the game.

Dravon says...

I think this got blown out of proportion, however, Jian did not ask any questions about BB acting career. He introduced him, respectfully, giving a complete overview. I dont think anything was wrong about that. BB shot himself in the foot for actng the way he did. If he did the interview, no questions would have been asked, and nobody -and i mean nobody would even remember the intro. BB drew all the attention to it. Seems to me that BB is a little insecure if he even needs to instruct the production not to make reference to his acting carreer. I have a lot of respect for BB. I also think Jian is a very good interviewer. Its too bad that this got blown WAY out of proportion, and dare I say, context.

omwomw says...

Swampland on Swampland: "We realize that for Canadians this can be an emotional issue." A bit headshaking coming from the guy who wrote this largely irrational and often completely disingenuous 'defence' for a defacto hometown boy who he calls "one of the most talented artists of our era". The whole post sounds and feels thin and awkward. Look, like everyone else Billy Bob Thornton is a complex human being. Some of his artitic endeavours have earned great respect, some less so. I know he is often warm and charming and funny, because I've seen it. He has a presence that can be intruiging. But he also has a mile wide mean streak and issues with anger and control as any one with a degree of familiarity with the full public record knows. It's that mean streak that kicked into automatic when he sniffed out Ghomeshi as a soft target, and he wouldn't let off of what really was extraordinary agression underneath the veneer. The mashed potatoes and gravy comment was gratuitious and mean as shit. He locked on this absurd mano a mano routine with a mild mannered Canadian radio host over nothing that wasn't almost entirely manufactured in his own head, at the expense of himself, his band, the listeners, his fans, people who bought tickets to the last two Canadian shows and who knows who else. Failing to renouce this self destructive behavior does nothing to futher Thornton's career or his personal evolution.

loopy777 says...

Wow. Much ado about nothing. For BB to request that everyone ignore his accomplishments outside of music is like telling the wind not to blow. Ain't gonna happen. Perhaps coming to terms with it so you can get on with the music would be the easier route to take.

TITOJJ says...

I went to see The Boxmasters last week on the opening show for the Willie Nelson Canadian tour. I thought The Boxmasters had an interesting sound. I also saw the interview in which Billy Bob acted like bratty spoiled child. I think it is insulting that he didn't want his acting career brought up when any other press I've read mentions something about his acting career. I think Billy Bob is a talented person both with his movie career and his music career. Slingblade is one of my all time favorite movies. There are other ways of changing the subject without acting like a wingnut!!!! I think the following quote from the above article defending him is the worst piece of BS I've ever heard. I'm a musician and know a lot of touring musicians who do media interviews to get the name out and the music heard. Not because the radio host or station wants to get some interest. The CBC is national radio station and have interviewed countless musicians, actors, artists, politicians, etc. from everywhere in the world. I don't think the CBC was banking on Billy Bob's acting/music career to give them more of a boost. How many radio stations are actually playing The Boxmasters. "This was an early morning interview/performance done during a run of Canadian dates in which the Boxmasters opened for Willie Nelson. For those that don’t understand this side of the entertainment business, radio appearances are supposed to be mutually beneficial arrangements in which the artist has a record to promote and the radio station gets an exclusive piece of audio (or in this case, video) to generate audience and interest for its station and host."

kewlheart says...

New word...DA GRAVYFLU! HA!

caro1918 says...

As a Canadian ... I agree we are a little reserved in some cities at shows. Ever been to a Great Big Sea show where everyone around you is just sitting and not jumping around? Whew! I can't take that comment seriously. However, I do think that Billy Bob really over-reacted to what was just an introduction and background. It just allows for people to go "oh okay this is the guy they're talking about". If he wasn't up for the interview or whatever he should have opted out. As for what happened at Massey Hall ... That was too much of an over-reaction too. So was comparing it to the David Letterman interview with Phoenix. Really, the issue that a lot of people have is that he (BBT) came out as plain rude in the interview.

redcanadian49 says...

This would all go away if Billy Bob Thornton would just APOLOGIZE! for being such an ass, and completly misreading his situation at the CBC interview. If he had done any research whatsoever, he would know that Jian Gomeshi always does a long flattering intro, to create interests and context as to who he is interviewing. If he had any problem with how he might be introduced, he should have said so. There was not ONE question about BBT's movie career, or personal life other than asking him what his musical influences were, which is something I want to know when listening to a musician being interviewed.There is NOTHING correct in your defence, whatsoever. Please apologize to Canadians for your boorish behavior BBT, we will forgive you, we always do firgive the elephant that lives next door. The interview was indefensable.period.end of discussion.

joneski says...

Shame on Billy Bob Thornton, what a disappointment. His behaviour was completely innappropriate and if in fact he was only functioning on a few hours of sleep, why not just decline the interview altogether rather than go on the air and behave like a jackass. His band mates clearly looked uncomfortable and BBT continual responses of,"I am unsure of what you are talking about" reflected quite poorly on his character. If he was honestly insulted about the interviewers intro of him as an actor why not just respectfully say so. At no time during the interview did i get the impression that the radio host was trying to be disrespectful, but i was certainly left with the impression that Billy Bob is clearly an ignorant ASS!

pauljedm says...

obviously a publicity stunt, pretty good one by the press they are getting. I had no Idea who the boxmasters were.

lulasuzanna says...

I use to teach journalism. Ghomeshi's interview, especially the intro, was just plain awful. Really sucked. Long before the first question, I was thinking -- shut up with all the BS and just ask some good questions! I just want to know about the music. That never seemed to happen. The Boxmasters are great -- I'm grateful for ANYONE who pulls in roots rock or country back into music. I ache for it. Ghomeshi's questions made it clear he hadn't done his homework about the band and the music and was skimming the BS surface. I'd be pissed, too. BUT...I'm not crazy about celebrities dictating what journalists can and cannot say or ask. I can understand a request, but you have to understand that ethically, journalists have a right to ask the questions. Ghomeshi was just a real idiot about it. There was no "context" needed. My big problem is that right now -- when we're all worried about losing our jobs, money, homes, healthcare, etc., I don't have a lot of patience with snarky celebrity behavior -- and this was damn snarky. Just tell Ghomeshi what was wrong and give the audience a decent interview for all of a few minutes. Not hard work to do that. I'd trade places ANY day. It'd be fine with me to put up with idiotic press people periodically, then spend my days playing great music and opening for Willie Nelson no less. Mr. Thornton, I'd trade places any time. There are a lot harder ways to live. And, the only thing you did to Ghomeshi was make him more famous. It was the audience you cheated. But I love the music. Thanks for that.

barryfandango says...

It's interesting to read somebody defending BBT on this issue. However I think a couple of your arguments here can be addressed pretty quickly: - Regarding Jian Ghomeshi's jealousy of BBT: Coming from the states you probably wouldn't know this, but Q is a big show. J.G. has interviewed everybody from world leaders to the greatest musicians and artists of our time. BBT and the Boxmasters actually rank pretty low on the totem pole of Q guests, and I've never detected any jealousy or revenge while he was talking to them. - Regarding how stations and artists "do each other a favour," the CBC is a publicly funded radio station so it does not have the same commercial pressures as a private station. Because of this they are able to focus on actual journalism, which they often do. Honestly though, as a typical Canadian, I'm telling all these points are moot. I don't give a damn who screwed who, who was right or wrong point by point. I don't think BBT is prejudiced against canadians either. The reason this has soured me on the guy is that he acted like a spoiled little twerp. No professionalism, no class, no manners. And that matters to us up here.

says...

there. they did it again BOYCOTT BBT BOYCOTT BBT There, I feel better now

says...

A number of writers have praised Swampland for running all posts. May I ask why they have deleted by user name from the post? I have gone from Boycott BBT, to simply says. Perhaps I am on the right track with trying to initiate a full on boycott of your spoied little brat. I hope his career is over. I trust it most certainly is in Canada.

Cooter Fawles says...

First of all, I'm an Arkie. I know what kind of a "reformed" and "enlightened" redneck Billy Blob is. He ain't all bad -- he warned Angelina about them black-market babies. Was he right? Huh? But he just don't tolerate puffed-up personalities pinging his ass for their own personal enhancement, and screw them and the horse they rode in with, they can take their A-f'ing Canada and rotate, he probably thought. Nevertheless, the argument that his movie celebrity is separate from his "musical" career is a stunted one, and as Billy Blob's buddies back in Arkansas might say, that dog won't hunt. He done pissed in the whiskey and evuhbody knowed it. But I have one question (or kwerstyun, as the ole boys might say): You gon' eat them taters? Um-hunhhh.

dickb15 says...

What a load of crap! Billy Boob is a petulant bag of shit...period....end of discussion.

zebo28 says...

Billy Bob who? The BoxMasters?. Never heard of them !

OttawaCanada says...

I must congradulate swampland.com for letting posts appear as writen and often. They run a open post policy, from what I have read and seen and that is great. THANK-YOU!

lainie says...

Take your whuppin like a man, son. Your a big boy, BillyBob & you know you had a bur up your nose that morning. Your defense army can twist up all the excuses in the world, but you should have shown some class. You acted very unprofessional. The "agreement" was not to "discuss" your acting career...nobody ageed they couldn't "mention" it as a seque into your music career. And you know danged well that Ghomeshi did not suggest the Boxmasters would be nowhere without your fame as an actor! He merely suggested it helps & admit it, it does help get them in the public eye more quickly than the average. And the gravy comment? Certainly some Canadians have said nasty things about Americans ... the secret here is not to sit in their very own country & insult them publicly! Unfortunately, it's human nature to mutter away behind backs, but to slap 'em in the face is not appropriate when they're out there paying big bucks to come & see you! Canadian money is just as good in your pocket as anyone elses & you should remember that. Also remember that Canadians are well known as a more subdued audience in a concert hall venue....come see us in the bars, maybe somewhere north like Moosenee or Edmonton(never hear of that have ya?)& see how you like us. Learn something from an old lady here - learn about other countries like we had to do (in grade school no less!); go play them & take them for who they are while you're scoopin in the cash. And finally, if you're not a "morning person" then please do us all a favor & sleep in!

whiskeycharlie says...

Billy Bob is a freaking PIG!!! BOTTOM LINE!!!

turk51 says...

People, get a life. The only reason anyone is paying attention to his music is because he's a movie star. Billy Bob, pull your head out of your ass.

colleen says...

BBB turned his tail and when home to Hollywood to suck his dick for a few days until Good ol Willy takes him on the road in the good ol USA. Willy sucks too for keeping this piece of crap and betraying his Canadian fans. Willy is obviously condoning his behaviour. Canada should turn on Willy if he keeps BBB on tour after this BS. I am sick of Americans - Brittany Spears just screwed Vancouver fans by walking off the stage too. What a bunch of premadonnas! I can't believe BBB has this stupid defence article on his website when all the comments just slaughter his ass. Just stay in Hollywood and suck your dick! If he was a fucking musician he would have played with his band at the studio like every other band does. Did he forget his vocal cords at home too? He should check into a fucking mental hospital.

kevenj says...

What a load... the interview mentions BBT's acting career in a short intro and then gets right to the music. The other stuff about acting comes out only after BBT throws his tantrum. BBT is a whiny prima donna. I thought the dude was going to cry.

canadian1 says...

From CBC tonight: "Just to clarify questions around 'preconditions': the producers and host did NOT agree to any preconditions to not mention his acting career. As Jian Ghomeshi said in the interview, he was interested in talking to Billy Bob Thornton and the band about their music as well as having them perform. That's what we were aiming to do. Thank you, Arif Noorani Executive Producer Q on CBC Radio One" The only person in the wrong is BBT.

RayNCB says...

Holy cow, the real thorton. I always thought he might be just like the interview. I never cared for him one way or another, he's not worth the thought, but when he starts going to different countries and goes on one of their broadcasts for millions of people to hear and then he proceeds to turn himself into a babbling imbecile on a live broadcast, that gives me reason to start caring. To start with, I've never seen anything he's done that was worth even talking about. So now, as a rule I am not a blogger, and I, do not like to critisize people but, when he went north and pulled this little stunt, as a representative of the U.S.of A; it really makes my blood boil to think that what if I was the next U.S. Citizen that just happened by a Canadian that might have just taken in that show. At least we had the rest of the band that took up the slack, and if I was in that band I'd vote to kick his butt to the curb. As hard as them guys are working, they're gonna make it, W/O thornton. I could tell what kind of man thornton was when he made that Santa movie, when that swingblade movie was out, I thought how strange, and then all the accolades, and I'm thinkin " what the __*__? " But then, this interview made it all clear. The accolades he got for swingblade were not for his thespian talent, as he would have you believe. He's got you all schnookered. What I see in this interview is the swingblade guy, which is to say, that guy in the swingblade picture is the same guy. So, the guy in the picture swingblade was no character at all, that was the real thornton, dumb as a post, just happens to be one of those people that can step in anything and come out smelling like roses. Anyway, one thing I'd like to make clear is the host was 100% professional, and also I would ask the Canadian people to please don't judge citizens of the U.S. by the action of one. I for one love Canada. I haven't been there since 1980, but I loved it.

OttawaCanada says...

Hello Ironman You are, right people are dying in this world. A American BBT actor/singer comes up to Canada and insults us like this. WE DO NOT DESERVE THIS. We as a country have stood by the USA and its war on terror. You cerntianly can not say that about your suppposed allies in Europe with the Brits as the exception. Outside the USA and the Brits, CANADA is third on troops dying for this war. As a percentage of troops deployed we have the highest rating of human lives lost. So are we pissed off, damn right we are. We are tired of Americans coming up here and insulting us and our way of living and being so ill informed about CANADA. You guys want respect but you do a very bad job of giving any to those who rally have stood by your country, and all that is good and bad about it. I mean he even did not attempt to say he was sorry he just left the country and left fans who paid to see him on the rest of the Canadian tour ripped off. It is no wonder that people all over the world are listening less and less to what any American has to say about anything any more.

siriusdog1 says...

Billy Bob = JERK! Grow up. I used to think you were talented, but you're just a self absorbed jerk!! I'll never watch or listen to you again. I truly feel sorry for your bandmates. They should toss you to the curb. As for Willy, I don't know what he was thinking. He's way to real for you! Jeannie (used to be fan of yours)

Bizbomber says...

So BBT wants to promote his music on national Canadian Radio. He shows up pissed. Fine. It is mentioned he is an actor. Fine. But could someone explain to me why the lead singer and drummer shows up without his drums refuses to play or sing but has his "band mates" play an instrumental version of a song he would normally sing and play the drums on? Too early to play? Too early to sing? Only if you are a spoiled asshole actor used to being asskissed by like sites like this. Look at the tape. Where is the drum kit? I'm in a band . I've done early morning T.V. after a late gig the night before. You do the do and put out as a band. He tried to save his ass by lying to people who see through that shit. Music fans. I feel sorry for the rest of his band. They looked embarrassed from the start. They are probably used to that feeling having to put up with a drummer with no time, a singer with no voice, but a name which now apparently they can't use. Context my ass. Good story guys, right out of Mother Goose.

copperhead says...

What Ironman says!!!! Give it a rest.

Ironman says...

People. Let a brutha have a bad day, okay? I know it's easter, but you folks don't need to crucify this guy... There are so many more important things in the world... the Navy Captain being held hostage... tornadoes and tragedy.... war and death.... Folks, take a chill pill. Let it go!

copperhead says...

Wow! First off I am not a fan of BBT. The interview is less than a footnote in the history of music. Guys its just not important enough to get into name calling and South VS North. Let me put it another way, who cares?????????. Lot better things to do in life anyway to care about what BBT does, or about the interview. Nobody will remember all this 30 days from now.

pianississimo says...

Having listened to the CBC radio show Q's original airing and watching it on Youtube subsequently, my lasting impressions are 1) it really doesn't matter whether Billy Bob Thornton fancies himself as a musician or not, but 2) the other band members deserve respect and sympyathy for being gracious in difficult situation caused by a prima donna movie star.

themope says...

This was a really weak attempt to defend BBB's boorish attitude. Even if we do concede that the interviewer knew that he wasn't supposed to "focus" on Billy Bald Thorton's "acting" career, to mention the fact during the introduction to the interview is a far cry from focusing the interview on the matter. And the fact that he didn't bring his drums to perform with his bandmates just shows that he's not a serious musician. just playing one. Like an actor. And if you actually listen to the interview he refers to Canadian audiences as being like mashed potatoes with no gravy, not the interviewer. And he's a hypocrite to suggest that looking into someones eyes and lying is unacceptable. He ironically (and hypocritically) did the very same thing at that very moment. He looked into the audience memebers' eyes and lied by saying that the gravy reference was for the interviewer only. What a liar and a hypocrite. The icing on the cake is the fact that he can't come clean about the whole incident. He's weak to boot. I only wish one of those Canadian audience members would have thrown a bottle (or a shoe) at his head, since he seems to prefer audiences that throw things when he performs. What a loser.

Sstteevvee says...

I thought BBT was childishly trying to be like Bob Dylan in 1966. The "do you ask Tom Petty that" outburst is like an imitation of Dylan's "do you ask the Beatles that" retort to the Time Magazine reporter in 1966 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pR8YuIGqWi4 - forward to 4:38. Reactions?

get_it_right says...

THE INTERVIEW WAS AT 9 AM IN THE MORNING. 9 AM. NOT 6. Perhaps the band woke up shortly after 6 am, but the interview was LIVE at 9 am. No idea why Billy Bob chose to complain about starting at 6 AM (which was inaccurate). Yes, you can still be tired at 9 am, but that doesn't give you permission to be an asshole.

Sstteevvee says...

He's a dick.

bigann says...

I know Billy Bob and he's a warm, gracious, funny person who never struck me as having a short fuse. If he got upset at how the interview was going then I know there's more to the story than has yet been presented. Billy Bob is serious about his music, he was playing in bands before he ever started acting and it's an insult to his music career to imply that the only reason anyone goes to see him is because he is an actor. It's an unfortunate situation all the way around however, I stand with Billy Bob whatever he does.

Sandra says...

".......Yeah, Angelina can you feel it Watch the angels as they’re dancin’ up above Angelina, what’s come between us Could it be the magic and the mystery of love They said we’d never make it Two crazy panthers on the prowl They said we would only fake it for a while But we just looked at them and growled......" ....ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha!!!! Oops, sorry, was just having a beer with Tom Petty......

sean2me says...

I saw the entire interview, Jian never asked anything about his movie career. He merely mentioned it in passing and then immediatley moved to music questions. That somehow outraged BBT? Would BBT act like that if he didn't have the security of his career behind him? I doubt it. He felt free to go nuts because of his career as a second rate actor. I really liked him before all of this, but now have such a dramatically different view of this guy. Just another out of touch person who persists to alienate himself from everyone else. Oh well, he didn't matter so much before, he will matter less after. I feel bad for the Musician's (non-actor's) in the band. I hope they carry on, they gave a proper interview while Mr Hyde was in effect. I have had enough of pompus hollywood idiots trying to be all around artists which absolutly demand respect from everyone without even trying to earn it. The guy is a zero.

says...

I've never heard of Swampland before, and from reading this poorly crafted article, I'm sure I won't be hearing from you again. Enjoy your 15 seconds of fame. Since you apparently don't know how to use correct grammar or a spellchecker, you will merely maintain your redneck fanbase of grunt-and-point-beer-swilling trailer trash and that's it. My favorite line? - referring to Billy Bob Thornton as "one of the most talented artists of our era." Ha! I guess that explains the whole "in defense" idea... Who else is on your list of "talented" people? Paris Hilton? Haha! You suck like a Billy Bob.

honcho2 says...

I'm a fan of BBT. Just seen the interview and read the defense, both a waste of time. The one thing that came out of this for me, I never heard of the Boxmasters before. I'll check them out. If BBT has an opinion about Canadians, WTF, not like we don't have any about the Yanks.

vsanborn says...

"Ghomeshi led off with questions about Thornton's acting career." Wrong, Ghomeshi led off with a simple comment, stating that BBT was an actor and then reviewing a (very) short 2-sentence history of BBT's career. The rest of Ghomeshi's questions were about music and were directly related to the Boxmasters. If BBT was so upset, he should have removed his mike and walked off the show, not played this cat and mouse game for 13 excrutiating minutes, giving a lame excuse that he forgot his drums, and allowing his band members to twist in the wind and play without him. You could tell how embarrassed they were. The Boxmasters got this interview on the strength of BBT's reputation, which was certainly not based on his talents as a musician. This was badly done all around, but while Ghomeshi made one mistake, BBT compounded the injury with his no gravy comment. He then slunk back to the U.S. using a lousy flu excuse, and then placed this article on the Boxmasters website to justify his behavior.

Sandra says...

I have one question for Billy Bob Thornton and Jim Markel. From the Boxmaster's own official website they have a posting from an interview on March 23, 2009 with The Beaumont Enterprise. From it I quote: "Billy Bob Thornton and the Boxmasters have put the billy back in hillbilly. It's one of the few defining words the musician/actor/director/writer will accept about his self-described "lower middle-class, white trash upbringing." "We celebrate it," he laughed during a three-tiered phone call from Austin, ..." Geez, sounds like the journalist was "trying to put things in context" to me. Where's the tirade? the pouting? the "choosing to not participate in the interview" here? Thornton acted like a total ass during the Ghomeshi interview. You can come up with all of the lame excuses you want to try to explain his bad behaviour and justify it. But as many a politician has learned it just makes the situation worse. Oh yeah, one more thing - the flu? "Bud", if you're such a rare talent and so creative couldn't you come up with better excuse than that for cancelling the rest of your Canadian tour dates? Come on!

WindCriesMary says...

Dear Jim Markel, This article of yours is clearly attempted-journalism at its absoloute worst. You need to understand that "agreeing not to ask any questions about Billy Bob's film career" is not the same thing as "agreeing not to talk about and/or mention it". You can't just go around ignoring key distinctions like that and then try to pass it off as logical step-by-step reasoning, it's disingenious, erroneous, and just outright wrong. Smarten up, and lose the self-righteous ignorance. You are not fooling anyone worth listening to. Get responsible with your reporting, you don't have a moment more to waste.

USASUX says...

BBT is an idiot. Cancelled tour because of a flu...right! Please don't come back to Canada...you sux

mandingo says...

Jim, Your defence of Billy Bob Thorton starts out well enough, but then you resort to ad hominem attacks on Gian Gohmeshi... that he had some sort of ulterior motive. Gian's background is neither here nor there and is irrelevant to the matter at hand. This ultimately undermines the purpose of your editorial. I agree the whole "potatoes without gravy" comment is blown out of proportion. Thorton was merely describing a particular portion of the audience that seems to be the majority of those who attend his shows. However, to blame the Canadian Media for blowing it out of proportion is inaccurate; the American media have been doing their fair share as well. Don't resort to the old "us vs. them" tactic. Yes, I am a Canadian and have viewed the video, courtesy of CBC (who seem to be milking the attention for all it is worth), but one positive thing that I've taken out of this: I enjoyed The Boxmasters performance on the show--the show they performed despite the trainwreck that had occurred just minutes before Gian and Billy Bob called a truce. ;) So much so, that I'm considering purchasing an album (hopefully they're on iTunes). Cheers, MWP.

guitarzan says...

What a poorly written article Jim.Irresponsible, misleading journalism. First,there were NO questions about his acting career. Yes,Ghomeshi states there was an agreement not to discuss his acting--and he never did. Not saying who BBT is and not giving any context of who the Boxmasters are upon intro would be weird-and make him seem like an out of touch journalist. Billy doesnt use his celebrity to promote the band? Its impossible for his celebrity NOT to promote his band!Its the only reason you and I have written about them,Jim. Just any band of 2 years doesnt start opening for Willie Nelson. Its not demeaning to accept that celebrity plays a role in that fact.Moxy Fruvous was never a critically acclaimed band in Canada at all! Implying Ghomeshi was a jerk(which he wasnt)due to not being popular in America--thats actually demeaning. Also,the interview was actually at 9am. Which is past the hour of the morning in which you feel is acceptable to be a pompous jerk. Not participating in the interview would be BBT leaving. No,he sat there and insulted the host,his band and an entire country via full participation. Not your best work Jim.

says...

Heres the reality. BB thinks he can get away with not answering any questions and everything must be on his terms. This is BS. I could understand this if he was using his "celebrity" in a "hollywood" interview because he may feel that he doesn't need to promote himself. If you want to be treated like an up and coming act struggling to make it as a headliner then suck it up and act like every other band (that doesn't have a famous frontman who can't be bothered to show up with his instrument). The fact of the matter is, he has an average band that would not have gotten anywhere without his celeb status so he's a hypocrit to ignore it and pretend like he's above questions regarding his "passion" for the music. He didn't want to answer any questions. There were no direct questions regarding his movie career period. Yet, the moron spent the whole interview "acting". Unbelievable. I loved his monster magazine improv. Such a joke. He basically alienated an entire country over this becauase he was annoyed at the host. So essentially, he could have promoted the band properly and then reamed the host and the producers after. Instead he decided to throw away ticket sales and a fan base. smart move. burning bridges always backfires on everyone. If Brad Pitt could sing and put a band together I can guarantee you he would be granted a record and an opening act tour date. Actors draw fans. Seeya Billybob, I hope you enjoy a life of touring Texas, Alabama and Louisiana.

wonder says...

What a silly "defense". Of course, BBT knows Willie Nelson. Why did he tell the journalist that he's never met the guy? I have seen BBT with willie in a texan bar a few years ago. It isn't a skill testing question. It is impossible to take offense at that. What a silly thing. Jian asked how long the band's been together. BBT could have respectfully answered the question. Jian did nothing wrong. BBT acted like a spoiled petulant baby. He was looking for a reason to be a brat. He didn't even bring his instrument to the studio. The band played without him. Would they have gotten on the air if they hadn't had a famous former actor in the band. He should be ashamed of his appalling behavior. This is the same kind of narcissism that allowed the AIG guys to give themselves bonuses. Completely out of touch with the real world. Does BBT understand what it would be like to be a young band wanting to get some help from media to get the word out about what they're doing. BBT lives in a dream world. I am surprised a gentleman like Willie Nelson would put up with this level of silliness.

Viola7 says...

If Thornton cared about his band, he would have brought his drums.

DerekHalsey says...

Without alluding to the BBT defense article above, here are some thoughts on what happened with Billy Bob in Canada and about my Canadian friends. I'm guessing Billy Bob was having a bit of a bad day. I've interviewed many top names in the music business, and a lot of those interviews are here at Gritz, and rarely has there been conditions set for the interviews. In Billy Bob's case, I see both sides of it. If he is serious about his music and doesn't want to be seen as simply a famous actor attempting to make music, I can understand it. His band was right there with him in the studio and Billy Bob, to his credit, would rather the conversation be about them and the music instead of about himself and "Sling Blade." On the other end of it, being a famous actor will get your band in the door when other bands and musicians, even better musicians in many cases, can't get that same attention or break. Actor/comedian Steve Martin has referred to this in recent interviews about his wonderful new bluegrass album, and look at the flak that Bruce Willis took when he recently sat in with the Allman Brothers in New York City. Billy Bob, to his credit, began in the music biz and was doing it long before the acting thing. And, in a lot of cases, famous folks like Steve Martin, to his credit, can get bluegrass music on worldwide and nationwide TV shows where there is no way the music would be featured otherwise. If an agreement was made beforehand about not talking about Billy Bob's acting and sticking to music only and one of the first things referenced is the acting, I can understand why he would bring it up. On the other hand, here is an interview with Billy Bob released today, April 11, in the South Coast Times newspaper where he freely discusses his acting career. http://www.southcoasttoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20090411/LIFE/904110311/-1/ENTERTAIN Here is an excerpt; "Yeah, I've always played music. I got famous as an actor there for a while; it was kind of a pain in the ass. But at least I can take care of my kids," Thornton said with a soft, almost embarrassed, laugh. "I'm not that big on movies," he said. "I don't pay attention to 'em, really. I was a roadie when I was young; I always thought I'd play music or play baseball. But I made money at acting, so I thought, 'I guess I better do that.'" I believe that Billy Bob is a good guy who came up from nothing and has made good from scratch. And, he could have easily been a musician this whole time. When you read about the history of how "Sling Blade" was made, it was an absolute fluke that it was picked up, was successful and launched his acting career to the heights it has seen. The Boxmasters make good and fun roots music and, as was alluded to before, they even have Unknown Hinson slinging some guitar in the band now. Before that, the band featured all-star guitar gunslinger Brad Davis, so the musicianship is there. I love my Canadian friends. I spend time with them a couple of times every year at various music festivals around America. From my friends and musicians from Toronto, Bob and Sue Manester, to the Creaking Tree String Quartet to The Duhks and more, I have a great time, every time. I first mention the Duhks here at Gritz Magazine six years ago. I've written up my adventures with Bob and Sue in three different articles here at Gritz, including the latest one here - http://tinyurl.com/bldbbh. Also, go to the top of this page and type "Manester" into the 'Search" box and you will find their further adventures in my festival road trip pieces. Gritz editor Michael Buffalo Smith was tickled pink recently to be interviewed by Canadian writer Ziana Bethune - tinyurl.com/csa83s. Also here at Gritz, Bill Thames did a large profile on Canadian musician Danny Brooks, on and on. Are there personality and cultural differences between Americans and our northern Canadian brothers and sisters? Yes, and I'm glad of it because it makes it intersting and fun. But, the differences are slight, to tell the truth. The fact is, even in Canada there are differences between, say, those in Toronto and the cowboys in Alberta, Quebec, etc. Despite the differences, the musical connection is there, the friendship is there and, definitely, the sense of humor is there between us. My Canadian friends will have some fun with me about our previous president whenever I see them and how I should go find a wife at the Calgary Stampede, I would then say that "Canada is America's hat" and maybe a joke or two about the Royal Family and then we pop open some Jameson and pass around the bottle, tune the instruments up and have the times of our lives. As for Billy Bob, I don't think he dislikes Canada or Canadians at all. In fact, I believe him when he says that he loves Canada. I think he had a bad morning and was defending his band mates yet could and should have handled it differently. Canadians should defend their country as well, and you got that done in Toronto the other night, but there is no need to over do it either. After all, as today's article in the South Coast Today newspaper alludes to, it was a TV gig in Canada that was the impetus for the Boxmasters to get together to begin with. Below; (http://tinyurl.com/cekybv) ....His fourth and latest solo album, "Beautiful Door," was released this year; it's actually the record that brought The Boxmasters together. "I was working as an engineer on 'Beautiful Door' and Billy asked me to play guitar on a song," said J.D. Andrew, who plays acoustic and electric guitars and bass for The Boxmasters. "I said, 'It's been a while since I've worked at it.' Billy said, "Well, we have to record a show for a Canadian TV show today." So we did it, and were pleased with it." Derek Halsey

divvygirl says...

The points you've made in defense of BBT are absolutely valid. Thank you for getting the word out! Our media has been embarrassingly slanted. I'm a Canadian currently working on a Masters in Journalism. I've been debating with all my friends - and I've stood alone in my defense of BBT. I heard the interview live. I was hooked after the first two minutes, stopped what I was doing and just stood there listening and smiling. I suspected that BBT would receive criticism - but I salute him. Politeness is overrated. Loved that he refrained from playing along. Kudos for clarifying what should have been obvious!

says...

If billy bob wasn't an actor he would not have been given the opportunity of an interview with the CBC. No one in Canada has heard of his hill billy band. He behaved like a baby - plain and simple. And when Canadian audiences teased him - he turned tail and ran.

bbtvsghomeshi says...

They were both wrong. Ghomeshi should take full responsibility for screwing up that interview. I doubt he ever will though.

Viola7 says...

I wonder if the author of this odd rebuttal even watched the entire interview. The full interview is available for viewing here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJWS6qyy7bw The fact that Thornton didn't bring his drums makes it pretty clear he doesn't care about his band mates and never intended to perform at all. Jian Ghomeshi never mentioned his acting career in the interview. He only briefly mentioned it in the introduction to the interview. Throughout Ghomashi was very professional. I find the speculation about above Moxy Froüvus particularly offensive. It's so ridiculous that Billy Bob Thornton threw such a tantrum during questions about music. Also, it's really said how the rest of the Boxmasters are cringing during the embarrassing display. Thornton made the entire interview about himself. The fact that Willie Nelson's news page links to this rude swampland article is a real disappointment to me. :(

chefhowie says...

Putting all the real nastiness from both sides on the periphery,and even giving BBT the benefit of the doubt, and I agree that this is not the same as that other freakin schmuck on Letterman, I believe fully that he came off like one immature baby who couldn't have his toy or his candy and pouted. Who cares whether he is an actor first or a musician? The point was he exposed the other members of the band to embarrassment, bad press, and his childish reaction. That is a selfish, self-centered, egotistical behavior. How old is he. He should know better. Why is it that you think it is OK to let him off the hook. He gets paid and benefits from this interview and should treat the audience and the DJ with respect. Why is it that these people think it is ok to act any way that want no matter what? He should be ashamed and the first thing to do is go apologize. You think that will happen.....No. That is why we live in a world that young people think they can do whatever they want and nothing matters except that they are fine.

billybobsux says...

Dear Mr. Markel, I'm not sure what's worse, Billy Bob's behavior or your defense of his actions as a Billy Bob apologist. First off, if you did your research and actually listened to the Q on CBC, every guest is greeted with a lengthy intro to provide context to the audience. Had the host, Jian Ghomeshi, omit Billy Bob's life as an actor, he would be talking about a 2-year-old band that plays hillbilly music -- who cares? The Q is an entertainment interview show that looks at trends in pop culture -- hillbilly music, and especially the Boxmasters, is hardly cutting edge or trendy. Without Billy Bob's past life, the band may be critically acclaimed by online blogs/rags like this, but they would NEVER get any national exposure. That being said, Ghomeshi never asked one question about Billy Bob's acting career -- every question directed at the surly actor was related to music. And what leads me to believe that you, My. Markel, are not a trained journalist, rather just another know-it-all blogger, is that you tried to tie Ghomeshi's background as a musician to him as an interviewer. His point, as all working journalists confront, is how much are you willing to compromise in order to have access to an interview. He clearly said, as you quoted: "We didn’t want to focus on questions around your acting career, etc." He didn't. Listen to the interview. The only mention of acting was in the lead-in. This is why bloggers have the reputation they do -- no research and no editors to help flush out holes in their arguments. The bottom line is that Billy Bob is your typical narcissistic celebrity, who is deluded in thinking that just because he can act, we all -- of course -- want to hear him sing. You are aware that he compared himself to Tom Petty? You made no mention of that statement on your blog. I think that said it all.

tuckerhead says...

Whew! Where the hell did all these northerners come from! LOL. I have been a regular Swampland reader and commentor for years and have never seen a reaction like this. You Canadians really get pissed off easily don't you? I'm all about the music, and The Boxmasters rock! Especially now with Unknown Hinson on guitar! If your DJ had kept it about the music, this never would have happened. Then again, any publicity, bad or good, helps sales.... By the way, I DO love Canadian gravy ... on my grits!

Canadian Pride says...

As a fellow Canadian I think all of this Billy Bob bashing is bullshit. It was obvious the comment made about potatoes and gravy was simply another swipe at the host who refused to play by the rules. And yes, all the stars set interview ground rules. If you step back and look, all of your comments are making Canada look worse than anything Thornton said in his interview. GROW UP CANADA!

deedee says...

First...the interview was NOT at 6 A.M. as BBT suggests. It was 9 a.m. Secondly -- anyone who listens to the interview knows it was about music. There was one reference to Thornton's acting career at the tail end of the introduction. Why? So the listening audience isn't sitting out there going -- " what the hell? Is this the BBT the actor he's talking to or someone else? It sounds like him. Does he have a band? Why isn't the host telling me this? Doesn't he know?" It's a simple, basic courtesy to the listener -- and yes, it's a bit of context. Ghomeshi may have been told he wanted to focus on music and he agreed and tried to do that repeatedly in the interview. What he didn't agree to was to do an interview in a complete vacuumm where movies and Oscars and actors don't exist. Only someone who has no experience with media or who simply wanted to be offended would act the way Thornton did at that brief mention of his "other" career. Ghomeshi, rightly, didn't make the leap that one mention in the set up to the interview would cause his guest to react in such a way. yeah, the story got legs and it all got torqued in the media probably more than it should have. But the behaviour is there in all it's unedited glory for anyone to see - and that is what people are reacting to -- they are watching that -- and then responding. And what they are largely saying is that BBT was out of line. And, frankly, if BBT wants to take offense to that set up in the interview, that's his choice, but why up the pettiness ante by piling on the comments about no-smoking laws and Canadian audiences? You might want instead, to show some tolerance in a country where you are a guest and where people paid money to see your show. The fact is, most artists are thrilled when they get an invitation to talk about their music and play live on a national radio show -- they are grateful, whether it's 6 am 9 am or midnight. BBT sat in that chair and refused to talk or to play. That makes him a spoiled Hollywood jerk, not the good ol', unassuming "hillybilly" musician he wants us to believe he is. All Ghomeshi did was attempt to show respect for his audience and his guests at the same time. BBT chose to shit on his host and his audience -- and the country he was visiting. That's hardly worth defending.

Auxerre says...

Bullfuckingshit. BBT was an arrogant asshole. He doesn't get to determine the context. If I'd been Ghomeshi, I'd have told him to get the hell out of my studio. My opinion of BBT, once high, has fallen greatly.

Opabinia says...

If BBT is all about the music, and he isn't using his reputation from his non-musical career to boost it, then why is his official billing for the tour with Price & Nelso "Billy Bob Thornton and Special Guests The Boxmasters"? http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0410092billybob1.html

Larryj says...

I heard the interview and there is only one conclusion. Thornton is a self righteous arrogant jerk. His acting is the only reason for his wealth and fame, his demeanor and behavior clearly show he is an uneducated moron who's is sick enough to be a convincing actor and scummy enough to easily hate. BBT kiss my ass... Larry Smith

tomthumb says...

I don't think that Ghomeshi was arrogant at all. BBT was both arrogant and uncooperative. I can understand why he wants to separate himself from his acting career, but it's not possible. At this point, he is a much better actor than a musician, despite what his heart and ego might tell him. Nobody wants to be boxed in and typecast into being just one thing, but BBT could have been a lot more direct with Ghomeshi. Instead he acted his way through, by pretending to be dense and not understand the questions that Ghomeshi was asking. It's not mature or responsible to act this way, and I could see the look of deference and discomfort on his band mates' faces. To the credit of another band mate that did answer most of Ghomeshi's questions, at least he had the balls to speak up and make up for BBT's unfriendly silence. I think that his bandmates should think twice about aligning themselves with BBT, because he's not doing them any favours at the moment. Jim Markel, I think that you're out of line, and BBT's reaction isn't far off of Phoenix's with Letterman at all. Billy Bob Thornton may have been a musician for decades, but there's still a reason that he's known for acting. It's because his ability as a musician is not as well received as his ability as an actor. Ghomeshi was a lot more earnest and polite than Letterman too, so give him some credit instead of trying to prop up one of your heroes that doesn't deserve it at the moment.

zallen says...

(If BBT was serious about his music standing on his own, he'd do what the Travelling Wilburys did and preform under a pseudonym.)

mdesanti says...

Billy Bob's behavior should not be tolerated. "would you ask Tom Petty that?" The DJ should have responded "Damn Right!". It's a known fact that all musicians are influenced by those who came before. Even the Beatles would say often that their musical influences were Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly among others. I am getting sick and tired of the massive egos of celebrities and their "I can do or say anything and it's ok" attitude. Without their fans ( Canadian ones too)they are nothing. I can't believe he would insult fans in Canada that probably like him and burn those bridges. Let's face it. He hasn't made a GOOD movie since "Sling Blade" and a GOOD action movie since "Armageddon". It's amazing to me that he wants crap like this to be people's last memories of him.

Maplekid says...

In Defense of Jian Ghomeshi and Canadians. "Let's not let fact get in the way of hype, after all." Indeed Mr. Market, that would be a good idea. If you print the words, perhaps you should consider living by them. Is this how you reserached your stories as a journalist? Because as a formal journalist your won story if full of its own myths. There comes a time where a simple apology would pretty much do the trick.

zallen says...

This is hilarious. If Billy Bob Thornton wasn't playing on his fame, they wouldn't have event GOTTEN the interview on the CBC. The press release on Willy Nelson's site talks about "Billy Bob Thornton's band..." Who? Billy what? Leaving aside his own famewhoring, if I changed fields and somebody referenced what I used to do and then talked about what I do now, how is that not OK? "Zoe, who won a Pulitzer prize as a journalist on assignment in Afghanistan, received her LLB and is now working for the ACLU..." Second, the VERY FRIST QUESTION that the reporter asked was about the band - which BBT refused to answer!! And the second question was about the music - which BBT refused to answer! BBT was looking for an excuse to throw a hissy fit and manipulated the interview to a point where he got to throw one, plain and simple. Swampland is either willfully ignoring the text or willfully ignoring the subtext. Possibly both.

Opabinia says...

Did you guys actually watch the interview? Thornton wasn’t asked a single question about acting. Not one. He was asked how long the band had been together, he was asked about Willy Nelson. The only mention of his acting career was a few words in the introduction, before the interview started. You quote without question BBT’s statement, “If you look someone in the eyes and promise them something, and you don't do it, you don't get the interview. That's the way it goes.” That might be a valid point, if there was a commitment not to even mention BBT’s non-musical career. But according to BBT’s own publicist, this didn’t happen: “[Arnold] Robinson confirms that while it's true Thornton does not like to be asked about his movie career while he's out promoting his band, Ghomeshi was never "instructed" to avoid the topic. "Bottom line: We don't tell people what questions they can or cannot ask," Robinson says. (from MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/30138866/ ) The interview was not taped at 6 a.m.; Q is recorded at 9 a.m. ET so that it can go out live to the Atlantic and Newfoundland time zones. (It is broadcast across the country via tape delay at 10 a.m. local time.) BBT may have had to get up at 6 a.m. in order to go to the studio and pre-interview preparations, but many professional musicians have done the same thing in order to appear on the show, without having a big sulk. One would think that BBT would be at least as professional.

badkat says...

Mr. Markel, If you are going to write an "In Defense Of" column perhaps you should take care to present the facts as they truly are. You write, " Thornton clearly felt that the entire interview and segment was off topic because Ghomeshi led off with questions about Thornton's acting career." Ghomeshi did not ask a single question about Mr. Thornton's acting career. Well, not until they got into the bit about Mr. Thornton being deliberately uncooperative because of the Mr. Ghomeshi's introduction. The most unfortunate aspect of this interview, from where I sat, was watching the other Boxmasters' anguish at being thrust into such a clearly uncomfortable situation. If body language is speaking for them in the video then even they are saying that Mr. Thornton is being a petulant chid. Mr. Thornton's behaviour is unacceptable. No matter what "context" you try to wrap it in. The mature thing to do would have been to admonish the host for bringing up his film career and then move on. Just *move on*. For the sake of the other members of the band. For the sake of the audience. For the sake of giving a decent interview and being a professional. Clearly Mr. Thornton is narcissistic. And that is a crying shame for everyone who is relying on him (and his noteriety/fame) to earn a living.

mzanier says...

Wow - amazing that the Boxmasters have suddenly come down with the flu and have had to cancel all Canadian tour dates. I hope it was Willie himself that kicked BBT's ass off the tour. BBT was a jerk during this interview. Listed to their music and it is soon clear that the only reason this band would be invited to interview on a National Radio program "Q" is due to BBT's fame (deserved or not). They just aren't that good. BBT didn't even bring his drums to play with the band on the show. He must be a very serious musician, this is obviously not a "hobby" for him. As a Canadian I am glad to see BBT run out of the country with mashed potato on his face - good on ya Billy Bob! Ps. Boxmasters don't come back until you have a real musician as a drummer.

knob bob says...

"Dang my redneck self, can't find my cigarettes or my valium either...."

zzmzz2 says...

Oh come on. You know when you're writing a rebuttal, and you think to yourself, "Man, this point I'm making isn't very good; I'm really overstating this." This was clearly the case for myths one though five. In fact, with the exception of myth one, the explanations of which range from dubious but plausible to totally stupid, and myth three, which is totally irrelevant and I have not heard about at all (seriously, I think this was invented by Swampland in order to make critics of Mr. Thorton seem stupid), the defenses are all patently stupid. Mr. Gomeshi does a morning show on a national new service. This is not a radio shock jock. Middle aged women driving their kids to work listen to this. Billy Bob was churlish and his behaviour should not be defended.

damann21 says...

BBT... I always knew was an “A-Ole!” I think the rest of the band should move on without him and fire him, TRUMP STYLE! There are plenty of better vocalist front men or women out there that would give a total "team" effort to the band's future...Take a look at some of the talent coming off of American Idol. The only thing I would require beyond having a good voice is that BBT's replacement needs to be Canadian! I'm glad that I haven’t wasted my time and money on BBT's product. My friends and I will by their new product when Billy bob is long-gone! Hey Billy Bob...you've got mashed potatoes for brains!

jnewby2121 says...

plain and simple his band is nothing to make the press about, they are not that good and would be playing in bars somewhere if it was not for having bbt as one of there members and backers. he would not have been asked to be on that station if it was not for his acting. bbt is a spoiled little brat just like so many american actors(i am American) that belive they have something special. Im sorry 85% of acting is being in the right place at the right time and sure there is some skill involved but not enough that anyone with that passion could not make a name for them selves. It will be a cold day in hell before i watch another movie that has bbt in it his only good acting comes from the comedy movies anyway he is trash and i for one will never wast my money and time on him or his crap band. as for the making fun of canada we in the states all make fun of u canadians lol we meen it with the up most love..bbt is still trash and this american will be boycotting him with ya.. cheers from oregon. James/m/24 years old.

OttawaCanada says...

Hey I checked with the CBC and the interview was actually at 9am and not a 6am as many in the media have stated. Still too early for BBT.

kewlheart says...

Hi Gang, I did listen and watch the interview with Billy Boob. Your defense of this Dude is simply wrong. It's one thing to agree or disagree with the interviewer, however, BBT saw fit to insult Canada as a whole. Why? Might I humbly submit his arrogance? This is a prime example of an asshole being famous. Now, more than likely Billy Boob was an asshole before his fame...but now the entire world see's the real BBT. Billy Boob has a rep in Hollywierd for being a bully and a punk, obviously it's well deserved!

says...

As canadians, the best thing we can do if boycott bbt. It is unfortunate for his band, but they should shed that asshole, and get on with their lives. I personally will never see a movie with bbt, or listen to a song of his. Boycott bbt, and pass it along to everyone you know. The only way we can hurt this asshole is in his pocket book. Keep up the good work CBC David

says...

As canadians, the best thing we can do if boycott bbt. It is unfortunate for his band, but they should shed that asshole, and get on with their lives. I personally will never see a movie with bbt, or listen to a song of his. Boycott bbt, and pass it along to everyone you know. The only way we can hurt this asshole is in his pocket book. Keep up the good work CBC. David

dagobert says...

This is a bs article. BBT acted like a spoiled brat and insulted a whole country. Myth #1: The Boxmasters would be exactly where they are today regardless of whether BBT was famous or not. In fact, the very reason a two-year old band was chosen to open to WN was largely influenced by his celebrity status. To say otherwise is ignorant. Myth #2: BBT was only trying to have fun when he insulted all Canadians. BBT knew exactly what he was saying and was in an obviously confrontational mood. He decided to take out his anger on all Canadians instead of acting like an adult and terminating the interview if he felt slighted. Myth #3: The band has the flu. The is a cowardly approach to dealing with a difficult situation. He should have requested another interview and admitted his mistake and apologized for his insulting remarks. In my view he is not welcome back to this country until such time as he acknowledges his mistake. Stay home there are much better US exports than this one.

HillbillyJake says...

A quote from Willie Nelson's website: "Billy Bob Thornton opened the show at the Kingston, Ontario Civic Center, and Ray Price followed with a jaw dropping performance resulting in a standing ovation"... Maybe if the Boxcrappers had given a jawdropping performance they would have given up the gravy. Why clap for crap?

Joe Potato says...

I like what BBT had to say about monster magazines. Me and Chuck used to rub rubber cement on our arms and form monster scars.

HillbillyJake says...

You can argue that an artist should be able to script their own interviews I suppose, but that doesn't get Billy Bob off the hook on two counts. Firstly, Billy Bob somehow figured that it was appropriate to insult 35 million Canadians as a way to get even with his interviewer for pointing out the obvious - that the Boxcrappers wouldn't even be on tour in Canada, and certainly wouldn't be getting an interview on a national radio program, if it wasn't for Billy Bob's acting fame. Secondly, Billy Bob went on to lie about his gravy comment in subsequent comments to TMZ. He clearly insulted all Canadians, but then he tried to weasel out of this by claiming he said it about the interviewer. How lame. As for the gravy insult - he was comparing a couple of theatre audiences in urban Ontario to Texas Honkytonks where they throw things at the band. Well, I'm a redneck from Saskatchewan and I can tell you that we'd just love to throw Billy Bob out of a moving pickup. We're sort of like Canadian Club on mashed potatoes out here. We love Willie Nelson and Ray Price tho'... love that Texas Swing!

trabalhawk17 says...

I would agree with everything in the "defense" if it were not for one very simple fact...THE INTERVIEWER NEVER ASKED EVEN ONE QUESTION RELATED TO ANYTHING OTHER THAN THE BAND AND THE MUSIC!! Merely mentioning Billy Bob's background in the intro was actually pretty benign. Billy Bob, in effect, has done exactly what he supposedly set out not to do...turned the focus on himself instead of the band.

knob bob says...

Any you boys seen my prozack around? Though it was with the rest of my meds.

Moverine says...

Swampland - Nobody on the planet gives a shit about Gian Gohmeshi's musical career and Moxy Fruvous. More importantly, Gian Gohmeshi's personal "failures" have nothing to do with this interview. All the guy did was mention BBT's career in his intro. Is that really something to have a shit attack over? Making millions of dollars doesn't come without a few hitches. Being recognized is one of them, use it to your advantage. If they make such great music, there is nothing to worry about. The music will speak for itself. If he is so conccerned about the association, why not create a stage name and wear a gimp mask on stage? Then I'd be convinced it is all about the music. This tantrum might of been OK at another time, but not when so many are worried about losing our jobs and homes. Consider yorself lucky dude. You can do whatever you want, just remember that your fans pay the bills.

lastcrab says...

I smell a "fishy dad" up in here. I think this article comes up erroneous on several accounts. Not least of which being the claim that the interviewer asked questions about Billy Bob's acting career. That never happened. Nor were the interviewer's questions appearing to lead in that direction whatsoever, not at any point in the interview. Maybe Billy Bob lost a friend the previous day or something. That might explain why he was so touchy. Wait, what am I thinking? Billy Bob has no friends.

True-lu says...

"Right away I knew he was rambling on about Billy's acting career " Lie. He didn't. Simple as that. Straight-up lie.

True-lu says...

"did he turn around and on the boxcutter [sic] website have to continue the snide remarks, and the inuendo woth the comment about the Canadian dollar ( or whatever they call it up there), and he can't even spell Canadian with a capital "C"." I don't see that on http://www.theboxmasters.com/main/. Can you provide a link, please?

KatieGotIt says...

Mr. Ghomeshi has always been arrogant sounding. He lost his night time gig on canadian television years ago. Right away I knew he was rambling on about Billy's acting career because he rarely gets a chance to have a famous actor on his show. He trulely wanted to feel important. Billy you should of started out right away and say, I'm hear to represent my Band and I appreciate any questions about my canadian tour. Thanks. Then when he started going on about your acting politely respond with ...sorry Billy Bob isn't hear ...a fantastic Band is waiting for the interview.. Not all Canadians are stuck up ... you shouldn't stop your tour in canada I would of liked to see you. Any audience in Toronto were just spun by the media; you could of really had a blast in London Ontario, we know how to party. Good Luck Billy!!

True-lu says...

"...whose PASTIMES INCLUDE ALLEGED WIFE BEATING." Ooops. Nix on that one, too. No talk about HOBBIES, either. Shhhhhh!

Torontonian says...

Ok, so he doesn't want the interview to be prefaced by his acting career... fair enough. maybe they should've gone with somehing like: "Mod Billy" is the name of the first record by my next guest, The Boxmasters. If the name "Boxmasters" sounds familiar, there might be a couple reasons why. First, "Mod Billy" is the Los Angelas trio's third album in the last year alone (yes this is a band with ambition). Second, the Boxmaster's principle songwriter, singer and drummer is a man by the name of Billy Bob Thornton, whose PASTIMES INCLUDE ALLEGED WIFE BEATING." Uhmmm... which one sounds better?

tkinder567 says...

What is it with you "HOLLYWOOD" people. Get over yourself!!! They get paid millions of dollars because, well let's call it what it is-They can read..Wow!! It makes me sick to think that with all the hardships that so many american families (including myself) are going through today, Mr. Thornton can't seem to appreciate the fact that he has been blessed to make a living doing what he loves and is paid VERY well to do it. He would not have even been at that Radio Station if it wasn't for his movies. Mr. Thornton just be grateful and embrace it. We all have sacrifices to make. You could be out of money, no home , no job and no prospects. I heard you say in an interview once that when you were starting out in the business and had very little money that sometimes you would have to go days without eating.Do you remember those days? Oh how soon we forget!!! So, suck it up!! Answer a dumb question about your CAREER!!! OK??

OttawaCanada says...

And a third thing Why did you cut loose and run? Are you a coward, or a big baby that did not get his way?. Couldn't take the rough Canadain crowd in Toronto, I see, they are the very crowds you said that just sit there. Was the Tornoto crowd the reason for gettig the "flu" til Willie is back in the USA come April 14th, the date your website says you will resume the tour? I see even the American press is commenting on you now. The opening line in one story is the sentence, "Mr. "don't call me a an actor" Billy Bob Thornton...". Come April 23rd you are to hold a press conference at some museum and the journalists of the story wondered if they would have to have there questions pre-appoved? Well done Billy the interview video is approaching 1.3 million views in less than 4 days. I will send you a Chrsitmas present of Canadian gravy to have with your mashed potatos.

Cleocon says...

One thing that most people are missing too is that adding fuel to the fire on any perceived "dissing" in regards to being an actor. Was the question about their sheer volume of work. I think that's a legitimate question. How does a roughly two year old band manage to put out five releases, mostly 2 disc sets and not come across as a music mill? For gods sake they've released a Xmas album - how does that lend cred to being a serious band? So BBT has to just face up to fact that the perception is going to be there that not only is he an actor with a music "hobby", but that the band's fame and exposure is riding mostly on his notoriety. At least they didn't ask him any Angelina questions. For BBT getting past this doesn't rely on throwing tantrums and tailoring interviews, it's going to rely on building a solid body of quality work over a period of years - in the end the work will speak for itself. There's a lot of assholes out there making really good music.

TrueNorth says...

I happened to be driving and listening to this interview on Wednesday. I was shocked to listen as Billy Bob came across as being surly, arrogant and spoiled. And the truth is, the interviewer was correct. BB would not be known if not for his acting career. Why doth he protest so much? Who knows. But the CBC and any other radio station have the right to greet guests as they wish, as long as the facts are true - their policy remains that they will not be told how to introduce a guest. I feel that Jian Ghomeshi, the interviewer for CBC was professional and friendly and Billy Bob was not. We may be polite, Mr Thornton but we do not sit in the audience and do nothing, as you said. I feel sorry for the other band members who have to put up with an egomaniac as their drummer. As I listened to the live music performed by the remaining members, I thought they sounded great minus Thornton's drums rumbling in the background. And to Sid Priddle "the CBC cannot be trusted"? What is that about? It's not like Jian added facts that were false. CBC were neither arrogant or unfriendly.

says...

Hey 4 chan. Let's take down these bastards !

True-lu says...

"Thornton clearly felt that the entire interview and segment was off topic because Ghomeshi led off with questions about Thornton's acting career." No. I'm sorry. That's entirely false. Up to the point where Thornton himself steered the conversation toward "the career that dare not speak its name", the interviewer's questions were exclusively, specifically about the band and its music. Up to that point, the interviewer's only reference to Thornton's film career was a phrase in his introductory remarks. Speaking as a listener, I would have found it very confusing indeed had that not been included. I don't know why Thornton would choose to embarrass his legendary tour mates, and piss off an entire nation on a national public radio broadcast, but that's his business. It's just too bad he didn't consider the effect on his employees. My sympathies to the band mates.

WriterWriter says...

Oh, and by the way, because you obviously didn't get this in J-school, the interviewee does NOT get to tell the interviewer what he/she may or may not ask. And as for Canadians being 'sensitive,' you're OUT OF THE LOOP man. This story was all over the international press - India, China, UK, US, Canada, Mexico, TMZ, DIGG, CURRENT. It isn't just Canadians reacting. It's everyone INCLUDING Willy Nelson! GET YOUR FACTS straight. You're fighting a lost battle dude. Hill Billy Bob is the worst kind of client. There's no spinning him.

says...

I love the Boxmasters. They're as tight as a brand new baby girl ! I always crank 'em up real loud when I rape baby girls so the neighbors can't hear them screaming. You make my Willy THrob Billy Bob ! Keep up the GREAT baby ass sounds southern boy so we can get 'er done, and then get some more done ! God I love fucking baby girls. You guys know where I can find any more 8 year olds. There's not as many in California any more. We wasted another one this week. I'm moving to Texas !

WriterWriter says...

You guys can spin this every way from Friday and the facts still remain that your client, who is in desperate need of damage control, was a jerk of the highest order. He was booed off the stage in Toronto last Thursday night and then the rest of the Canadian tour was cancelled. Why? Because Canadians threw some spicy gravy at this excuse for an entertainer. As for context, anyone who wants to - and people the world over have - can see the video and hear the audio of this interview. The video leaves absolutely no question as to who created the problem. http://www.cbc.ca/q/blog/ Hill Billy Bob is welcome to stay out of Canada. He is firstly disrespectful to his own band mates, because THEIR livelihoods depend on a functional band where his doesn't: whether or not he likes it, he has an acting/writing career that paid (past tense because he's so OVER) him great $$ and will continue to pay him residuals. He was very disrespectful and full on attacked the paying public - those who'd paid to see him in Toronto over two nights and the following night in Montreal. Finally, he was disrespectful to the interviewer who provided him a national - international really - public forum. He's an ass of the highest order. Here's the interview and the VIDEO! http://www.cbc.ca/q/blog/

PKSPKS says...

Sid Priddle started their comment with "As a former Journalist..." no real journalist would support censorship in any form. As for Billy Bob... Whaaaaaaaaaa... What an absolute baby. I have seen angel food cake with more substance. PS: Your band sucks. Checkout the critics comments. Stick to acting, you are pretty good at that.

hal5000 says...

Hey Billy Bob, Why are you such a one dimensional actor? You always play the role of an uptight asshole. My suggestion is you write a one man play called "Jackass Me" and write, produce and collect the gate that way you won't have to interract in a meaningful manner with anyone but for a short duration to spare them the pain in the ass experience that is BBT. Yes I am Canadian and yes I am offended by the disrespect you displayed towards my country. As for your friend's at Swampland they were trying to defend your actions in a tasteful manner and I respect that. Do the other members of the Boxmasters and Wllie Nelson a favour (Canadian spelling) and drop the music gig for their sake so they won't suffer any further embarrassments. Get some counselling and anger management training to help you improve your iability to interract meaningfully with other human beings. Unfortunately I still haven't heard any of the Boxmasters and would be reluctant to do so until Baby Bob is toast with no butter. How's that for Mashed Potatoes with no gravy?

PaulWilliam says...

The discussion of context misses the point of the issue. The point that riles my Canadian brothers and sisters most seems to be the references to tame and lifeless Canadian audiences. As a Yank who has been up here for a few years, I know that nothing could be further from the truth. While there is nothing boring and tame about many American shows, I have been to many Canadian shows that put spice in gravy that BBT couldn't even stomach. The fact that Jian is an extremely capable and experience interviewer is beside the point. As is the BBT's lame excuses for acting like a child. I'm sorry BBT had to embarass his bandmates and tour partner Willie Nelson. I'm looking forward to the Boxmaster's next visit with a new drummer.

Verisimilitude says...

Well, I hope Billy Bob will remember, a northern man doesn't need him around anyhow. His bandmates must be so proud.

nawd.12 says...

This is all well and good. Well, for publicity purposes anyways. In the entertainment industry, bad publicity is just as good, or at times, even better than positive publicity. The public has seen it time and again. What do you remember about Brittany Spears or Lindsay Lohan? It seems the majority of celebrities will do whatever it takes to get their names in the headlines or at the very least, in as many rag mags as possible. Good publicity, bad publicity, ANY publicity seems to be the mentality. As far as putting things into context, let's just remember that the entire world may not have cared to see or may not have been old enough to have seen, let alone remember BBT in his haymaking movie career days, you know, when he won an Oscar for his art in "Sling Blade". Some people only remember him from his less than stellar performances in Bad Santa, as the coach in Bad News Bears, or as Mr. Woodcock, or in that film with Napoleon Dynamite about how to get yourself a girlfriend and keep her. Some people only remember him as being Angelina Jolie's ex-husband and the one-time adoptive father of Maddox, who is now the adopted son of Brad Pitt. These are the people who are wondering why the Boxmasters are receiving such international exposure after only being together for 2 short years. If any other band, no matter how phenomenal or as prolific, were to break into the music industry with such wide acclaim in so short a time, the entire world would be looking for bloody signatures on contracts with the dark lord. BBT would have paid his dues in the acting arena in order to be where he finds himself today. Dues paid in the acting arena. BBT has not paid his dues in the musical industry. Tom Petty, the icon BBT laughingly likens himself to has paid his musical dues and continues to contribute brilliantly, unlike BBT who is due-less. If BBT doesn't want to remind the large percentage of the world's population who may have only seen him in box office bombs or remember him as the ex-husband of a current box office star what his credentials truly are, that's fine with me. And it should be just fine with everyone else in the world who will no longer pay to see him or listen to his music. Good luck to the remaining members of the Boxmasters, I hope they are able to distance themselves from BBT quickly and efficiently.

JJoanne says...

Still not convinced that Thornton is an immmature, unprofessional jerk with a big ego! Get your facts straight...the interview was done at 9 am not 6 am (as BB mentioned during the interview) IF he didn't want to be there so early why did he agree to it? Jiam's Moxy Fruvous career was years ago and was successful and now he has a successful broadcasting career. Canadians are not depended on the U.S. for success we have our own culture up here.For eg... Blue Rodeo...a houshold name in Canada but not in the US, yet they are extremely successful. Jiam doesn't mind when you bring up has Moxy Fruvous days...it is a part of his life. Billy Bob should follow his example.

Colindarko says...

This is a really sad and pathetic article Mr. Markel. If you were any sort of journalist, I think you would understand the subtle differences of "context" around an interview and the actual "interview". Even if it was agreed upon that there wouldn't be any questions asked about the acting career - that doesn't mean that it can't be mentioned as context. Typically, the media respects artists' wishes to not be asked about certain topics - but if the CBC were to cut a news package (for a show like 20/20 or something), around this interview, they would cherry-pick bites from the taped interview and then give context to that in a studio intro. That's sort of how it works, ya know? Oh wait, obviously not since you wrote this inane post. There were no questions asked about the acting, it wasn't about that at any point - until Billy Bob acted like a self-important prick and got combative and childish. Professionally speaking, all bets are off then - and anything is free game. Keep writing for swampland though Mr. Markel, that's the only place you're fit to write for - some place that no one has heard of (probably with terrible editorial like this one).

rockon says...

This whole thing was overblown on all sides, including the Swampland defense of Thorton. I mean Gohmeshi doesn't even ask about Thorton's acting career, he just mentions it in the intro. And we all know that celebrities negotiate what can and can't be covered in interviews, but again, Gohmeshi doesn't ask about his acting. Swampland suggests that it is insulting to suggest that the band has gotten extra media attention because of Thorton's acting career (which Gohmeshi did not do during the interview!) but does anyone really believe that?! You've got to be kidding! Of course they get extra media attention --that doesn't mean they're not a great group or that they don't deserve attention. I do think it shows arrogance though.

rockon says...

I think this story has been way overblown. And I mean on all sides, including Swampland's defense --the questions asked by Gohmeshi had nothing to do with Thorton's acting career, it was only a couple sentences in the intro for pete's sake. And what Gohmeshi said after the interview seem besides the point. Yes, we know that celebrities make arrangements about what can and can't be asked in interviews, but was Thorton asked about his acting career? No. And as for Swampland's discussion of the "myths" about the interview: Does the band (or anyone) honestly think that Thorton's career as an actor hasn't given them extra media attention? I mean, you have GOT TO BE KIDDING! That isn't demeaning; it doesn't mean they aren't talented. A little full of themselves, though.

mnurkxd says...

I happened to be at the Massey Hall concert on the Wednesday performance...having been blissfully ignorant of all the fussin and warrin...I was surprised to even know that Billy Bob had a band..was hesitant at buying his C.D. prior to seeing the show...was curious as to whether he had the chops so to speak or if he was just cashing in on his fame....well..after seeing his set...I immediately went downstairs and bought his C.D....WOW...WHERE HAVE THEY BEEN ALL MY LIFE?!!! Then the next morning...I turn on my T.V. and see all the hysteria of the CBC interview....Honestly...of course anyone with half a brain would briefly allude to Billy Bob's history as a cursory introduction...which I believe all the interviewer was trying to do as was demonstrated by his questions to the band right after the introduction... Billy Bob shouldn't take offense to being introduced by the nature of his own career...it's a fact..he should be proud..as far as the music goes..the public will decide if the band has legs or not.. And believe me the BAND HAS LEGS!!! The press up here and Billy Bob need to get over themselves...they're both WAYYYYY TOOOO SERIOUS....over such a slight miscommunication...as for me...I just pre-ordered their new Modbilly C.D.!

Pauleywog says...

There are thousands of bands out there struggling to make it with, arguably, more talent than the Boxmasters. The ONLY reason they were on a national news show in another country was because their drummer is (or was) a movie star. Is he that naive to think that a new band that is average at best would get the kind of attention without his status? He came off as a huge dick. The Billy Bob gimmick will soon wear off and they'll be playing $100 a night bars soon.

Romano says...

The Flu?? I think the sh*thead ate too much gravy!! Good riddance and stick to movies where we can laugh at you rather than be embarrassed for you! Au revoir Trailer boy!

OttawaCanada says...

One more thing.... Mr Thornton, you are no Tom Petty.

swampland says...

We realize that for Canadians this can be an emotional issue. Our goal wasn't to inflame anything further, but to instead, explain the context of what was happening during the interview. Again, it is not "controlling" the press to lay out ground rules for an interview. Further, it is not arrogant to expect respect from the interviewer if you are his subject. Mr. Ghomeshi's premise that the only reason anyone cares about the Boxmasters is because Thornton is an Oscar-winner isn't fair. It is biased and disrespectful. Allowing an interviewer to go down this path would have Thornton acknowledging and accepting Ghomeshi's flawed premise. Accepting this "truth" would not only be a slap in the face to Thornton personally, but to his bandmates as well. I hope everyone can take a moment to see the dilemma this created for Thornton. Would it fair for Thornton to call Ghomeshi "not a real journalist" but merely a musician who got his radio gig because of his music career? Again, people can like the Boxmasters' music or not, but we urge people to take a step back and understand that there are certain lines that even people in the celebrity world don't have to cross. In Thornton's case, it concerns basic respect that he and his band weren't getting from Ghomeshi. As far as the gravy comment, it was clearly a joke. He was comparing the idea of a quintessential honky tonk crowd to Canadian crowds acknowledged tendencies to be reserved. He meant nothing by it other than trying to bring a bit of humor back to the situation. Last comment - we believe Ghomeshi was wrong. Just because he has wrapped himself in the Canadian flag while flying his "I'm part of the free press" banner doesn't give him a pass for being wrong. Ghomeshi is trying the whole "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" approach. Canadians shouldn't let him get away with that.

OttawaCanada says...

I am glad to hear that BBT has quit the Canadian tour. This shows that BBT is willing to let down fans who have bought tickets to see the Boxmasters because he is upset over an interview gone wrong. BBT needs to grow up and be a man and not go running home with the "flu" when the going gets "tough". Canadians perhaps, rather than throw things at one another up here or at the band, actually listen to the music that the band created. Also the comments about the Canadian dollar and seeing Detriot Tigers play the Blue Jays in Toronto and the bracket comment just prove how little BBT knows and understands of Canadians or Canada. So here are some facts BBT should know if he comes back to Canada..but hopfully he will not. Canada and USA trade about $1 Billion a DAY. the largest trading relationship between 2 countires in the entire WORLD. After the USA and British, Canada has lost the most troops on the USA war on terror. As a percentage of troops deployed we have lost the most troops. USA's biggest supllier of OIL? Canada USA's biggest supplier of Electricity? Canada USA's biggest supllier of Natural Gas? Canada USA's biggest supllier water? Canada USA allie from our beginnings (1867) Canada. The Canadian dollar has been worth more than the US dollar at numerous times in history. None of our major banks has ever gone bankrupt. EVER. We have national health care services for all and private services as while. We share one of the longest borders in the world. Toronto is not a city of the USA. One of our national dishes contians French Fries, Cheese curds, with a large helping of gravy. It is most popular in Quebec (which is a province like a state in the USA. While, BBT, thanks for showing how inmature you can be and how lacking you are of understanding and how selfish you can be with little regard for your fans up in Canada. Don't come back and time soon ya hear.

Pay attention says...

By the way Billy, you might find audiences in Canada react like "mashed potatoes without gravy" to your music because you have neither the talent nor the experience needed to "bring the meat to the meal." There can be no doubt that Canadian audiences were left thinking "where's the beef?" after hearing you play. Mediocre music gets a mediocre reaction, good music moves people to react. Don't give up your day job Billy!

asdfasdf says...

We won't be seeing any more of Billy Bob. His career is over.

Pay attention says...

Did the writer of this piece of fluff attempt to defend the raw ignorance of Thornton actually WATCH THE INTERVIEW? There were NO, repeated NO "questions" asked pertaining to Thornton and his acting career. Spin any way you like, you're lying and that is a fact born out in the video. Thornton is a mediocre musician at best and without his fame to open doors, he'd be playing booze cans and strip clubs. That is a fact. You guys are too much. Either you are in the employ of Thornton or you are groveling in the hope that Thornton will step down off of his high horse and allow you to kiss his egocentric boots. Thornton behaved like an asshole and the interviewer stick handled him like a professional. And the video proves that to be true in spite of the numerous lies you printed here.

Fishingal says...

Listened to and watched the interview. Saw and heard an adult acting like a petulant 5 year old. Really....get over yourself Mr. Thornton

vanessa mariga says...

As a journalist I find it disgusting that Billy Bob believes he can control what people are allowed to ask him. If he was a real musician, he would have kept playing, because that's what real musicians do. Instead, he boxed it up and headed straight for the border. He should stick to acting, because frankly the real Billy Bob sucks.

fearless freep says...

What a pompous, conceited and arrogant jerk. I mean really, does Billy Bob think that he has added or otherwise managed to improve the music of bands like the Who or even (God help us)the Monkees? World the world of music stop spinning without the "Boxmasters"contribution? I appreciate what he is trying to do and have absolutely no problem whatsoever with him going out there and playing. Really, Go for it! But to (as noted already) compare himself to Tom Petty?? Wow, just a little delusional in my humble opinion. If you wanted some attention Billy, I guess you got it. However, this too will pass becuase quiet frankly, it is my belief that your music will not stand the test of time and your 15 minutes of fame as a "musician" is starting to tick down. Get over yourself and go act. that's what your good at. Alright then?

griwei says...

I'm a fan of roots rock and not a fan of the CBC, but the only point with which I completely agree is that the video does speak for itself. One cannot help but witness, in Mr. Thornton's behaviour, someone so steeped in conceit as to repeatedly compare himself to Tom Petty. If Mr. Thornton was acting like the professional you purport him to be, he would have adequately answered the questions put to him and taken up his displeasure with the interviewer and/or his producers after the segment was over. Instead, he clearly made his band mates suffer through one of the most stunning displays of petulance exhibited by a man of his age and accomplishments I have have witnessed. From personal experience, I know that extremely uncomfortable experiences can bring on a flu bug, so I suppose I must suspend disbelief about how one of the otherwise hale and hardy members of the band displayed in that video has conveniently come down with the flu, just long enough for the band to extricate itself from its remaining contractual obligations in Canada. Mr. Thornton owes his band mates and the radio audience a contrite apology for his immature behaviour. I understand that it was likely augmented by his apparent nicotine addiction, as he complains about having been denied the opportunity to smoke in the studio building before the interview. I suspect, however, that Mr. Thornton's frustration with being refused the privilege of smoking as he desired actually demonstrates the nub of the problem: this is a man who is obviously not used to hearing the word "no". Ironically, much like any coddled celebrity who is being treated in non-VIP fashion, Mr. Thornton's fit of pique boils down to little more than a simple case of "don't-you-know-who-I-am?-ism". The irony is that his rage erupted because someone actually did know who he was and had the temerity to mention it, in inspite of his express desire to the contrary. Wow: tough day for Mr. Thornton. First he's told he can't light up a smoke in any buildings and next people aren't doing exactly as he says. It must be tough not having everything you ever wanted done exactly your way all of the time. Don't these people know who he was? Ask yourself this: would all of this had happened if Tom Petty or Willie Nelson had been the interviewee that day? Of course, not, neither man would act so ungraciously given similar circumstances. My suspicion on that score is that this is because they truly know themselves far better than Mr. Thornton perhaps ever will.

satenia says...

First off I am Canadian so I will get that out of the way. As for the interview, well I was not present when they agreed to what the context would be, so who was in the wrong there only those that were present really know. As for Billy Bob beoing upset and in the same conversation making a general statement about his perception that Canadians were like the potatoes without the gravy.... well if you have been paying any atention to things you would know that is what many Canadians are upset about.... not the interview in particular but the lacking gravy comment. There was no need for it, upset at the interviewer is one thing to make a remark about Canadians in general when his tone was already sarcastic whether the tone was from being tired or annoyed is irrelevant was not the time or place. Second his website, after they played in Kingston they were going to watch the Jays play. The statement that we got our Canadian dollars worth was fine, the bracket comment afterwards was rude. Billy Bob is an intelligent professional man and if he does not know our currency than don't bring it up, for him not to seems very odd. The snarky little side comments against Canadians in general is what has many up here annoyed. The last thing that has many shaking their heads. If it is so important to him that people do not connect his acting career and his music career than he should really take all the promotional stuff off his other website that is connects the two of them on the same page, the official Billy Bob Thorton websote, either they are connected or they are not. Lastly, after listening to some of his music, Toronto is not the best venue for them, Northern Ontario, Eastern Canada both would have given him a much better reception. But at the end of it all.... the ashole comment about the interviewer who cares... that is an issue between them, the comments about Canadians in general.... well we did not agree to any terms and we dit not break any agreements... so he threw it out there first he is a big boy and can deal with the attitudes back from it.

Sid Priddle says...

As a former journalist and public relations executuve( and a Canadian) who attended Billy Bob's performance during the Willie concert in Toronto, I wanted to support Billy Bob. There are times when the CBC( in my opinion) cannot be trusted. From where we sat there were more cheers than jeers. And I admire a guy who doesn't bow to arrogant journalisim.

Elvis 1956 says...

I dunno. Seems like an overreaction. It made no diff to me that the interview was prefaced with that. I didn't think this was a 'hobby' for BBT; unlike, I don't know... Bruce Willis maybe? Or Russell Crow with his band. Now, after all this stupid bruhaha, I've filed them under 'That Thing You Do', when I would've put them under something akin to the Razorbacks. I made that monster model of the Phantom of the Opera too. That isn't what made me listen to Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, Vincent, Feathers, Orbison, seek out rare rockabilly vinyl, or jump and shout.

midnightrider says...

Finally, someone who sees the truth behind the bullshit. If I were Thornton, I'd be pissed off too. Good story guys.

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