Joseph Arthur Deems Paste A Caricature, Beige

Paste, America’s #1 Triple-A music magazine, has been crushing on singer/songwriter/erotic poet Joseph Arthur for a while, with raves for 2006’s Nuclear Daydream and this year’s follow-up Let’s Just Be (3.5 stars). The editors invited him to perform for Paste’s December podcast and March issue launch party. They even named him one of the best 100 songwriters alive.

It must’ve stung, then, when Joe sent the high-brow rock rag this letter (printed in the current issue)…

A CHALLENGE TO PASTE BY JOSEPH ARTHUR
Paste should be more like its name
Meaning it should smack you about more
Have reviews by poets like me about itself
    (hey wait a minute)
Paste should take more chances
Offend more
Be more misunderstood
It tries too hard to appeal to some fantastical
    demographic of pretend people who like
    pretend music
Singing pretend songs
To plastic ears bleeding internally into a brain
    folding over itself just because
Paste is a caricature of itself
If it were a color it would be beige

It goes on, but you get the point. Why the haterade? A recent blog entry on josepharthur.com may shed some light:

I sent dude from paste
Some writings to try and get a column
I figured out a good name for it
Letters from a self depreciating megalomaniac

Aw, all he wanted was a column. That’s cute.

Joey, Stereogum will give you a column. We want to be more misunderstood! And our demo isn’t “pretend people who like pretend music.” We cater to real people who hate everything. Can we bum a smoke?