Alice in Chains Drummer on US: 'We're a Disposable Culture, But the Music Always Exists'

Sean Kinney compares concerts and festivals in the US to those in Europe, naming tradition as a major difference.

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According to Alice in Chains drummer Sean Kinney, "things don't last long" in US when it comes to festivals, as most fans don't give enough long-term support for them to become a tradition the way European festivals do.

During a recent interview with 99.7 The Blitz, Kinney gave his input on the current situation, saying, "It's America. Europe has got these long, standing, 20-30-year festivals and it doesn't seem like things last as long here. We're more of a disposable culture, like 'Oh, onto the next,' you know.

"But the music always exists," the drummer continued, "so it's just [a matter of] trying to find out the proper way of going and keeping something like that working. I think people kinda burn out on them after a few years, they're kinda like 'Oh it's not cool anymore.' And I don't know when music wasn't cool, so it's doesn't make any sense to me, but that seems to be the perceptive, you don't have that over in Europe, those festivals [are] going on for 20 years and they look forward to it."

Kinney also spoke about the effects rock 'n' roll lifestyle had on the band and the reasons for not partying as hard as back in the day.

"There's a consequence to partying your balls off that we're really aware of and it's not from our lack of doing it to excess," drummer said. "Just that I'm here talking to you guys is pretty amazing. I wasn't designing myself to survive this long, 'cause I just didn't really care, so to me it's just weird that I'm talking to you guys and doing this.

"I lived that way since I was 12 until several years ago, so it's not a hobby weekend thing, it's just what you do all the time. So it quits being a party, it's just how you live and it's not a really glamorous way of living."

As far as the current state of the group and future plans go, Kinney commented that the only reason the band still keeps going is the fact that they are doing what they like an believe in it. But judging by his words, things did change in rock 'n' roll and it's much less of a lucrative line of work than it was.

"The only reason we do it is 'cause we like it," Kinney started, "We believe in what we do, we care about each other, we operate like a family. It's not the same as it was when we started, there's no Music Television, there's no 'Cribs' lifestyle, there's not a bunch of money in rock 'n' roll man."

New Alice in Chains record, "The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here," is set to drop in a matter of days on May 28 via Virgin/EMI Records. The album consists of 12 new songs, with samples of each track officially available for streaming over at iTunes.

13 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I think the reason that the european festival last longer is because ``all`` of the bands we want to see is from america.. And when they are here we want to see as many as we can, therefore more people goes to the festivals.
    American's are semi-responsible for setting trends and bringing the cool. Xbox, iPhone, Rap, Thrash, etc. American music is popular all over the world but world music isn't popular in America. The same can be said for American sport's broadcast's, wrestling, movie's, etc. Once something has gotten tired, it's forgotten. Blackberry, Limp Bizkit, The Matrix, Ren & Stimpy, Backstreet Boys, Nelly, Raamstein, etc. After 'Du Hast' Raamstein was out of pop culture. I'm sure other countries at least played a few other singles. Not us. Limp Bizkit sells out stadiums in Europe, they're touring small clubs here. Very few things have longevity here but things that were cool before can make a comeback much easier than things that were never cool yet. ie: Metallica in 2003; Metallica in 2008. Machine Head too.
    Okay, we get guys hate the 21st century music scene... All the love to AiC. Been a big fan since forever, but isn't this enough? every work field changes, not just music. You either handle the change and move on, or cut. And it isn't like they're trying to resurrect anything from the 'glory' days of the 90's anyway. I'd rea;lly wish they talked more about the record and the writing process, or the gear used, instead of how 'difficult' music culture is nowadays...
    They have been, but 'journalists' are choosing to quote these parts of the interviews.
    I think it's because Europeans are much more interested in collecting music rather than buying and watching whatever's the new 'it' genre. On the other hand in the USA it's more about whatevers popular in the present. Once that loses its popularity, the next thing pops up along and copycat artists roll along the conveyor belt. I've seen quite a few artists mention this in interviews. This has happened with Hiphop, Post grunge, Nu-metal, Metalcore, etc. The media overwhelms us with so much of whatevers popular that we eventually grow sick of it and we move on to the next genre, and so on. Mind you I'm talking about the mainstream here. This is just my opinion anyway
    Is it just me, or is it like there's an Alice in chains article almost every second, or third day? Just saying...
    How about all the QOTSA and Dave Grohl crap that shows up almost every other day with 100% likes and 7 million comments? You got any justification for that?
    Yes I do, I don't see anywhere where I said that AIC was the only victim of being set through the UG-news cycle...
    You imbecile, the point is being in the news all the time, which I think those two shitty bands fronted by over-rated mediocre musicians such as Dave Grohl and Josh Homme are every alternative day of the week.