Billy Bob Thornton found out just how much gravy Canada has when a difference of opinion on a Canadian National radio show interview with his band the Boxmasters unraveled, and lead to his comment that Canadian audiences are “Potatoes with no Gravy”
Lets take a quick look at that interview from Billy Bob Thornton and his band the Boxmasters.
For the first half of the video BillyBob seems to be spaced out and kind of a prick, but as he gets to the point you see why he is upset. Artistically he doesn’t want to have his movie career attached to the attention and success of his band. To be fair to his bandmates who may have a musical presence in their genre, they are a new band and are only getting attention because of Billy Bob’s existing fame. I can respect that he is attempting to sidetrack that inevitable spotlight. Hell, the only reason this story came across my desk was because it was related to a movie actor (and Canada)
But I am a little on the fence about his reaction. Clearly the interviewer was instructed (or was supposed to be) to not bring up his acting career, and maybe felt that it was worth mentioning it in his introduction as opposed to a direct question or steering any part of the discussion toward Billy Bob’s fame as an actor. But I can see how the interviewer felt it was relevant to introduce him that way. We can speculate on what his producer told him specifically but we don’t know.
I can see what Billy Bob is is doing throwing in a silly story about a monster magazine contest he worked on as a kid. Its irrelevant to his music career like his acting is irrelevant to his music. But I can also see the interviewer Ghomeshi’s point that a lot of their attention is because he is already famous. Obviously a sensitive subject to Billy Bob Thorton.
So a little sore thumbs on both sides of this struggle. I don’t know that either of them is wrong.
HOWEVER, when the interview gets back on track and Billy Bob makes a casual observation that Canadian audiences are more reserved than some of the European or American audiences, the interviewer admits is not an uncommon observation. Then Billy Bob pushes it further into the “Potatoes with no gravy” kind of comment, and national pride took this two sided disagreement to Billy Bob is the enemy. Online comments and call in shows across the nation were furious at his hurtful assessment.
So much so, that he was BOOED off stage at his Massey Hall performance opening for Willie Nelson. There’s your gravy.
Boxmasters quickly announced that some of their crew and a band mates were about to get the flu, and all Canadian dates were all canceled.