Fiona Apple gave her first performance in three years last night during The New Yorker’s virtual festival, where she debuted some Fetch The Bolt Cutters tracks live for the first time. She did the album’s first three songs — “I Want You To Love Me,” “Shameika,” and the title track — and was backed by a full band in-studio for the livestreamed set.
She also did an interview with New Yorker writer Emily Nussbaum, who wrote a great profile of Apple around the time the album came out. Apple called in from Alabama, where she just recently decamped to from Los Angeles. Her power had gone out shortly before the interview began as she was in the path of Hurricane Delta. “I’ve got two little electric lanterns in front of me and and one of those little push lights that you put in your closet,” she said of her interview set-up.
The interview covered what she’s been up to during lockdown and certain aspects of Fetch The Bolt Cutters. She also talked about politics and wanting to move somewhere more remote: “We can buy a couple acres and get a house and shut this shit out because I feel like we’re fucked.” She continued:
I mean, the Supreme Court, all that — all the federal judges, my God. I mean, oh, my God. There’s Proud Boys and our president — our president is a White Supremacist who can’t even manage to deny that he is which I guess is good. But I mean, it’s been so insulting, the way that he’s just gaslighting people in America.
I threw my hands up here right now because I don’t know what to do. I don’t know what to do. I think that something good that’s happened this year, I mean, through all the bad stuff that has been happening, I think that, one big thing is happening is that I think that a lot of us have been looking at — or a bigger portion of white people had been examining themselves for the kind of racist tendencies they may have without thinking of themselves as being racist.
Like, thinking about like how do I think about this and why — I think that people are finally being able to, like, look at themselves without getting so defensive that they can’t hear what people need them to hear. I feel like we finally been, like, OK, this is too important. I got to check my ego out of this and just be like, I mean, look at myself and let me look at the people around me…
Check out some clips from the event below.