Jack White, of The White Stripes, The Raconteurs, and The Dead Weather fame, isn't happy about all things digital. In his new role as Record Store Day Ambassador, White issued a statement expressing his sadness about kids these days, lamenting the death of meatspace for art and entertainment. "How can record shops (or any shop for that matter) compete with Netflix, TiVo, video games that take months to complete, cable, texting, the internet, etc. etc?," White asks. "The internet is two-dimensional... let's wake each other up." White wants you to leave your cave.
"There's no beauty in sitting for hours playing video games."
"Getting out of your chair at home to experience something in the real world has started to become a rare occurrence," White says. "Why go to a book store and get a real book? You can just download it. Why talk to other human beings, discuss different authors, writing styles and influences? Just click your mouse." (None of these qualify as activities in White's real world.) "Well here's what they'll someday learn if they have a soul," White says. "There's no romance in a mouse click. There's no beauty in sitting for hours playing video games (anyone proud of that stop reading now and go post your opinion in the nearest forum)."
If that was enough to wake you up, White would love to get you face-to-face. "We need to re-educate ourselves about human interaction and the difference between downloading a track on a computer and talking to other people in person," he says. "The size, shape, smell, texture and sound of a vinyl record; how do you explain that to a teenager who doesn't know that it's a more beautiful musical experience than a mouse click?" You can start by, as White suggests, heading on down to a record store. And while you're there, be sure to tell White about the Harlem Shake — he's missing out.