White Wash

The White Stripes create mystique the old-fashioned way: lying and keeping mum

"Your Southern Can Is Mine": So far the only people to surmise that the White Stripes' records don't have any bottom are disgruntled ex-bass players. The Stripes made tentative use of standup bass on De Stijl's "I'm Bound to Pack It Up," after which they slapped themselves silly and vowed never to use one again. Similar to Queen's aversion to synthesizers, Jack and Meg will probably spend an entire career filtering their guitars and drums through gizmos or gadgets just to ensure that there's never another person in the White Stripes who gets dubbed "the quiet one." "I Can Learn": Another possible motive behind the White Stripes' shirking of press is that critics have been rather bitchy about Meg's timekeeping. She shows flashes of Gene Krupa and Max Roach, but the band's material requires her to pound the drums in the same rhythm to which most people either jerk off or drive nails. Indie fanzine Gullabaloo reported a rumor last December that Meg does not actually play on any of the records and that the beats were supplied by drum legend Bernard Purdie. This was, of course, a lie perpetrated by Purdie himself, who fell on hard times after spreading a rumor that he deputized for Ringo on the first few Beatles albums, but he wouldn't talk about it unless someone bought the six-figure rights to his story. While we can confirm through digital DNA that the beats on White Blood Cells are 100 percent Meg White, careful study of 2000's De Stijl proves that at least half of the beats were in fact lifted off Drum Drops, a popular series of drum instructional records released in the '70s, before the invention of drum machines.

"Truth Doesn't Make a Noise": Even after Time exposed Jack and Meg's bogus brother-and-sister story and printed their real names, the publication still managed to perpetrate yet another myth — that "the growing media frenzy over the White Stripes seems to be happening without an attendant promotional and marketing machine." That is a lie: The pair does indeed own a very powerful promotional and marketing machine, one of only nine Hypenators that Armlego Industries Inc. manufactured in the United States. The other eight are owned by *NSYNC, Aaron Carter, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Linkin Park, Aaliyah (who is still making use of hers), Enrique Iglesias (who shares his with the Three Tenors), Oprah Winfrey and Oprah's resident care counselor, Dr. Phil McGraw, who also owns Armlego's prototype Tear-inducing Machine. The White Stripes bought their refurbished Hypenator at greatly reduced cost from Armlego; it's a model previously owned by Kathie Lee Gifford, who claimed it wasn't working. In the possession of the White Stripes, the machine still seems to be emitting a whole lot of silence. The only difference is that the press is eating it up — for now, anyway.

Meg and Jack keep out of the rain, but not out of the tabloids.
Patrick Pantano
Meg and Jack keep out of the rain, but not out of the tabloids.


Scheduled to perform Wednesday, May 29, with Garbage, and Abandoned Pools. Showtime is 8 p.m. for the all-ages show.
Mesa Amphitheatre

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