Time Out New York asks the tough questions to the eccentric folkie…

TONY: Your song “Little Boys” is about wanting to marry little boys…
Devendra Banhart: Okay, let me explain myself. When we were recording the record, my friend said to me, “You know, man, they’re going to play this record in Starbucks.” And I said, “Well, I’m going to write a song that will guarantee that will never happen.” Then that night we watched the movie Chicken Hawk: Men Who Love Boys, about NAMBLA, the North American Man/Boy Love Association. At the same time, swimming in my head was the idea of a song about a schizophrenic hermaphrodite with the male and female physical characteristics in one body, but also the male and female psychologies in one body. So the first half of the song is from the male perspective, and then it switches, and the second half is from the female perspective.
TONY: Aren’t you worried about getting a reputation like Michael Jackson’s?
Devendra Banhart: You mean his reputation as the King of Pop? That would be great!

Um, even without the song I don’t think Starbucks would play it. Anyway, congrats TONY on being the first to compare DB to MJ.

Stream the Cripple Crow album sampler here.

Comments (29)
  1. buddha  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    There really is a NAMBLA?!

  2. I love the bit about him wanting to play in a headband and underwear. What a hippie.

  3. gvitbk  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    jeez, scott you strike right in on those controversial subjects like a friggin missle….it’s all good cause it does make people think….
    NAMBLA is fucking sick
    DB’s response to the Starbuck’s thing is clever
    and so is his response to the MJ comparison..
    never listened to his music, and don’t know if i will especially after reading this….
    love the rapidfire stereogum approach, keep up the awesome work.

  4. Yay Devendra!! He is hilarious!!

  5. Is there really controversy over stuff like NAMBLA? I thought everyone agreed that it’s messed-up.

  6. I listened to Cripple Crow last night and thought it was pretty incredible. Made me want to bust out my Country Joe & The Fish vinyl, that’s for sure.

  7. gvitbk  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    Good point jed and meant nothing negative with my comment…. was actually trying to complement Scott in my usual fucked up way..trying to atone for sins of the past when i made negative comments about the gum…
    love what you guys are doing and one of your biggest fans….

  8. bunnybun  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    go devendra!
    god, i love him :)

  9. gvitbk  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    and just to add what i meant about controversy was the way the gum wrote the headline about DB (Devendra Barnhart not a pedophile), ie his journalistic approach….trying to illicit response from the people who like or dislike DB… just wanted to clarify since you were trying to get a rise out of me…..

  10. brandy  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    what clever repsonses, love him.

  11. david brent  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    I heard that Devendra Barnhart is Michael Jackson’s new weightlifting partner.

  12. Jen W  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    That his music kind of sucks (his singing annoys me for some reason) keeps me from buying his records.

  13. rachel  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    Dude, they play Joanna Newsom at Starbucks!

  14. > Dude, they play Joanna Newsom at Starbucks!

    Do they? I never go to Starbucks. That’s pretty cool actually.

  15. mee  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0


  16. nitpicky  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    I don’t love the fact that Devendra uses the term “schizophrenic” to refer to something with two personalities. Schizophrenia has nothing to do with split personalities. People frequently make that mistake, and it’s annoying.

  17. your right nitpicky! Split Personalities are a decent band from Minneapolis… here’s a pitcfork review…

  18. 12 rods, dumbass  |   Posted on Sep 8th, 2005 0

    Split Personalities is the name of their album.
    And 12 Rods was one of the most underrated bands ever; give their EP “Gay?” a listen. Fuckin A

  19. Dumbass is guilty as charged! would you believe i did that purposely? Maybe? aw cmon man give me a chance……….

  20. dumbass here…. would saying “i’m sorry” help out my cause any?

  21. the abbreviation db belongs to david bowie. devendra banhart in no way deserves to inherit it.

  22. gvitbk  |   Posted on Sep 9th, 2005 0

    b, did not mean to tarnish the Thin White Duke’s name…. he is sacred to me as he appears to be to you… sorry.

  23. Annalea  |   Posted on Sep 9th, 2005 0

    >I heard that Devendra Barnhart is Michael Jackson’s new weightlifting partner.

    LMAO! That’s gold dust, david brent.

  24. lassmichallein  |   Posted on Sep 9th, 2005 0

    I confess to being previously unimpressed by Devendra’s guileless “man-child” shtick and even mildly annoyed at his ’20 crooner shtick. But I finally saw the light when I experienced his performances both with Vetiver and solo at ArthurFest in LA over the last wknd.
    God, is that Jesus pirate freak look of his HOT or what? Loved how he shook his hips in the most deliciously womanly fashion…He is incredibly beautiful and adrogynous, and as far as I care, totally entitled to be his generation’s “DB”…He is as worthy an heir to David Bowie as any.
    Hot hot hot hot!

  25. bowie left folk behind a very long time ago and was never sincere, except in the fact that he wanted to make good music. devendra, by contrast, is consistent in style and appears to me quite painfully sincere. but if you really think he’s going to live up to his initials, then i look forward to his future dalliances with ambient music, fascism, jumpsuits, mullets, and rolled-up hundreds.

  26. pw  |   Posted on Sep 20th, 2005 0

    I listened to some of that Devendra stuff as i haven’t heard anything of him since his earliest “gothier” witch-folk stuff… and i must say, i liked the old stuff and persona better, this new music is pretty silly. i don’t believe him. he’s a liar. whatevs.

  27. SoojieWoojie  |   Posted on Oct 3rd, 2005 0

    oh Devendra… how i <3 thee…

  28. Mochan  |   Posted on May 8th, 2007 0

    Burkle !!!!! Fhuhwhu!!JDBIBWMijuenLLODJHFWU

  29. Shocked  |   Posted on Nov 15th, 2007 0

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