Jack White has posted an original poem in defense of his former White Stripes bandmate, Meg White, amid scrutiny over her drumming abilities.
Though Meg White has been retired from music and out of the public limelight for well over a decade, a debate over her abilities erupted on social media this week in response to a tweet posted by writer Lachlan Markay. Responding to an article marking the 20th anniversary of The White Stripes’ “Seven Nation Army,” Markay wrote: “The tragedy of the White Stripes is how great they would’ve been with a half decent drummer. Yeah yeah I’ve heard all the ‘but it’s a carefully crafted sound mannnn!’ takes. I’m sorry Meg White was terrible and no band is better for having shitty percussion.”
A number of fellow drummers, including Questlove of The Roots, were quick to jump to White’s defense. “I try to leave ‘troll views’ alone but this right here is out of line af,” Questlove tweeted. “Actually what is wrong w music is people choking the life out of music like an Instagram filter—-trying to reach a high of music perfection that doesn’t even serve the song (or music).”
Karen Elson, who married Jack White after he and Meg White divorced, so expressed here support. “Not only is Meg White a fantastic drummer, Jack also said the White Stripes would be nothing without her. To the journalist who dissed her, keep my ex husband’s ex wife name out of your fucking mouth. (Please and Thank You)”
Now, Jack White himself has seemingly responded to the controversy in a poem posted to Instagram. “To be born in another time, any era but our own would’ve been fine,” White writes. “100 years from now, 1000 years from now, some other distant, different, time. One without demons, cowards and vampires out for blood, one with the positive inspiration to foster what is good.”
Read White’s full poem and see pro-Meg reactions from other musicians below. For his part, Markay deleted his original tweeted, took his account private, and posted a six-tweet apology that can be seen only by those who had already followed him. Meg, meanwhile, is retired, counting her millions, and oh yea — is about to be the third woman drummer ever inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
I try to leave “troll views” alone but this right here is out of line af. Actually what is wrong w music is people choking the life out of music like an Instagram filter—-trying to reach a high of music perfection that doesn’t even serve the song (or music) pic.twitter.com/hCj43qNpcG
— Plug 5. (@questlove) March 14, 2023
Not only is Meg White a fantastic drummer, Jack also said the White Stripes would be nothing without her. To the journalist who dissed her, keep my ex husband’s ex wife name out of your fucking mouth.
(Please and Thank You) https://t.co/qnnxgT3Rxh
— Karen Elson (@KarenElson_) March 14, 2023
Meg White inspired me to sit behind the drum throne and pick up the sticks. Her style and the White Stripes music was a breath of fresh air compared to most of the stuff going on at the time.
Anyone who talks shit her wouldn’t know rock and roll if it bit then in the ass pic.twitter.com/mNXO5ONdxI
— Margo Price (@MissMargoPrice) March 15, 2023
If you’re dissing Meg White you fundamentally misunderstand what makes music good
— Ben Lee (@benleemusic) March 14, 2023
Meg White rules and always wills.
— Garbage (@garbage) March 16, 2023
Meg White was an incredible drummer. Percussion is about feel, not how many notes you can play. Does it move the song? Does it make you dance? Do you feel it on a primal level? 999/1000 drummers couldn’t do it the way they did. That’s a fact
— Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band (@bigdamnband) March 14, 2023