Roger Waters has proven himself to be a fairly mercurial figure, albeit one who’s heart has always seemed to be in the right place. The Pink Floyd vocalist recently took aim at Facebook, who wanted to use a Pink Floyd song for one of their ads and once famously suggested that Marron 5 oughta take a knee when they performed at the Super Bowl halftime show. While Waters has one of the greatest live concert productions on the planet, it might be getting to his head a bit based on his latest comments about his superiority to acts like Drake and The Weeknd.
In an interview with Toronto’s The Globe And Mail paper, Waters seemed to object to the publication and other Canadian media’s decision to give ink to The Weeknd’s After Hours Tour kickoff at the Rogers Centre rather than Waters’ two-night run at Scotiabank Arena. The Weeknd of course had to cancel the hometown tour stop because of Rogers Communications’ outages, while Waters’ show went on as planned. Regardless, Waters’ concern was clearly from a legacy standpoint.
“…With all due respect to the Weeknd or Drake or any of them,” Waters said. “I am far, far, far more important than any of them will ever be, however many billions of streams they’ve got. There is stuff going on here that is fundamentally important to all of our lives.”
His comments seem to stem from the inherently political nature of his and Pink Floyd’s music as opposed to what he might be deeming as comparatively vapid output from Drake and The Weeknd. Waters indeed makes powerful statements on stage, but this does feel a bit misguided. “I have no idea what or who the Weeknd is, because I don’t listen to much music,” Waters added. “People have told me he’s a big act. Well, good luck to him. I’ve got nothing against him. Would it not have been possible to review his show one night and my show another night?”
Ah, the age old desire for press coverage. “I’m not trying to make a personal attack. I’m just saying it seemed odd,” Waters said, in a mild backpedal. It does seem strange that Waters would concern himself with these matters. His music speaks for itself and whether or not Canadian media shines the light on his appearance in the country in relation to what other Canadian (and non-Canadian stars) are doing, should really not affect the message he’s trying to get across. He’s too good for that. Ultimately, this rant feels like nothing short of an “old man yells at cloud” moment.