Well, I just started this ASK VOLTAIRE column and already I've been inundated in questions. However, I thought it might make sense to start with a blog entry I posted on Myspace back in 2007 because it answers 4 hot-buttton questions.
"Can you email my friend?"
"Can you call my friend?"
"Can you sign something for my friend" and last but not least....
"Can I propose to my girlfriend during your show?"
WARNING: very, very foul language ahead. You've been warned!
This monkey don't dance!!!!!
(Originally posted on Myspace in Feb. 2007)
"Can you email my friend (wish them a happy birthday, post on their wall, etc)?"
Alright people..... I've just about had enough so it's time for Mr. Voltaire to have a big old gay fit and you have no choice but to just sit there and listen (that's not really true, you can get up or hit delete or click on something else.. but you're not going to, are you???? ).
I'm going to try to make this clear... I AM A MUSICIAN.
I am NOT a f****n delivery service, I am not your f****n butler, I do not deliver messages, I'm not U.P.S. or FEDEX. So.... stop sending me messages telling me to leave a comment on your friend's board because "it would make them so happy".
If you want them to be happy buy them a God damn cake or rub their feet or just tell them they can email me their damn selves... JUST LIKE YOU DO... and I will read their messages ... JUST LIKE I READ YOURS... it's really not rocket science kids.
So why don't you just tell your friend, "Voltaire reads all of his messages, you should send him one"?
I'll tell you why.
Because it's not about your friend is it? And it's not even about me....
its about YOU. This is just your little way of having your friend go, "OOOOHHHHHh you are soooooooo coooooool! You got (insert name of minor local celebrity here) to send me a birthday message! I didn't know you guys were friends.... " etc etc...
Well, I have to tell you that I'm pretty f****n sick of it.
You and I have a dialogue. I make myself VERY available to anyone who is interested in what I do. I read all of my messages, I reply to many when I can. I post these silly little blogs, you reply, I post some more...
At shows, I am NEVER backstage. I don't know what backstage looks like. I man my own booth so that I can meet you and talk to you. I stay until the club closes so that I can get to know you, get to know the people who care about my music.
I will sign your CDs, your shirt, your pants, your boobs... whatever.
But when you start asking me to do things for people I don't know who did NOT come to my show... or ask me to message people who did NOT message me, frankly, I feel used.
I feel like you are using me to look good in the eyes of someone else.
So...... please don't do it. It's just plain old RUDE!
As of about a week ago, I have started just deleting any messages or emails from people requesting such things. It amazes me too, that some of these folks upon not getting a response, will send ANOTHER AND ANOTHER! Well, now I guess they can just read this blog and see why I am not DANCING when they ask this monkey to DANCE!
Honestly, I should just start charging. You want me to leave a one sentence message on your friend's page. No problem! You can Paypal me 5 dollars!
You want to come up to me at a show and have me call your friend and leave a message. Sure! $10 in cash. heh heh.. F**k that, better still, the next time someone asks me to do something for a friend of theirs I'm going to say, "No problem! but first, here's my neighbor's address. Bake him a cake!" ; P
And hey, while I'm already ranting... here are a few other charming examples of sh*t people pull.
"CAN YOU CALL MY FRIEND?"
As I mentioned I get this one a lot.. people walking up to me at shows holding out their cel phones saying, "call my friend!!! Talk to my friend!!! Leave my friend a message!" you know what, F**K YOUR FRIEND!!!! Did they come to the show? NO! So guess what, they're f****d just like everyone else on this planet who doesn't get what they want. When I can't make it to a Bjork show I assure you she does NOT CALL ME to tell me "sorry you couldn't make it". Grow the f**k up people. If you love your friend so bloody much BRING THEM WITH YOU!
And for the record, 9 times out of 10 when I'm asked to do this, the person on the other line is just bewildered. They're not all "Oh My God, it's Voltaire? I can't believe it! yadda yadda!" Usually they're just like, "Huh? wha?"
So congratulations you orchestrator of magic you... you've managed to create yet another sloppy, awkward dialogue between someone who's bewildered and someone who's irritated.
"CAN I GET AN AUTOGRAPH FOR MY FRIEND?"
Of course you can, I don't mind at all. People come up, they say their friend couldn't make it and ask if I can sign something for them. No problem. But it's a problem when they plunk down 10 napkins and want an autograph for everyone they know! "This one is for Suzy... this one is for Tom.. it's his birthday..please write "Happy Birthday Tom...For the Horde! Congratulations on getting to level 60!"... this one is for...
You're a humanitarian... I get it... but if you like these people so damn much, BUY THEM A F****N CD instead of having me sign a bloody piece of toilet paper!!!
I have items on my table that are only 5 bucks!!! 5 bucks, MAN!
If your friend is not worth 5 miserable dollars to you, why am I signing sh*t for them? lol!
"CAN I PROPOSE TO MY GIRLFRIEND DURING YOUR SHOW?"
Oooohhhh. this one got WAY out of control! Rogue from the Cruxshadows and I had a long conversation about this phenomenon. Apparently he was quite the victim of this one as well.
Once upon a time I got an email from a guy asking if he could propose to his girlfriend on stage at one of my shows. I said Okay. The day came, he came up and did the deed. It was cute, it was sweet, it was touching. Everyone loved it.
Then I got another request... and another...
Look, I get it. You want to make that moment special. You want to be in front of a huge crowd of people and be the focus of a lot of attention. I understand that more than anyone else (ahem... anyway!).. but guess what, jackass? the reason there is a huge crowd focusing a lot of attention towards the stage is because I'm DOING A F****N SHOW HERE!!!! It's taken me MANY MANY YEARS of VERY VERY hard work and much starving and sacrificing to get to a point where people give a sh*t about what I'm doing. And now you just want to saunter your fat ass onto the stage to propose to your girl.
Effective immediately, if I we haven't been close personal friends for 10 years or more, don't even ask. If you still want to give it a shot, you'd better show me a green picture of Ben Franklin before you even open up your mouth.
And if that doesn't work for you... here's some advice. Pick up a guitar and learn to play it. Write some songs. Play your local scene for no money for a couple of years. get really lucky and get signed to a label. Put together a band, put out a CD. Discover that you dont really make money from CD sales, starve for a while. Record another CD 2 years later, go on tour, starve some more. Have your marriage fall apart. Put out a 3rd CD about how your marriage fell apart. Play a bunch more shows... put out another CD. And then, when you are on your 5th release and lots of people are coming to your shows.. and you're still in the business for no reason other than because you simply refused to quit no matter how much you got the sh*t kicked out of you by life on a daily basis for 10 years....
...walk out on stage and propose to your f****n girlfriend!
and when you're done, me and about 100 other people will hand you our cel phones and ask you to call some random a**holes you've never met. ; P
Okay, I'm done. ; )