Steely Dan vs movie star Owen Wilson thing. If you're unfamiliar with it please read more about it here.
The public accusation in the form of a letter on Steely Dan's homepage was of course a joke. A joke that - understandably - didn't register with a lot of journalists reporting it. Owen delivered a funny reply. A funny reply that still didn't convince journalists that the whole thing isn't for real. What's even more disturbing is that I've read comments from so called Steely Dan-fans who missed the fun of it all.
One person that gets it is Pete Howell in the Toronto Sun. He puts it in perpective by calling it an inside joke and mentioning more examples:
"The best inside jokes are ones that have multiple layers of meaning. Such as the current slanging match between pop band Steely Dan and actor Owen Wilson, a feud that's playing out mostly on the Internet. It's an exchange of volleys that might look hostile to those not sufficiently clued in."
"But the really funny thing about this whole exchange is that Steely Dan, I think, were riffing on a classic Groucho Marx prank."
Read the whole column here.
Meanwhile over at The Cleveland Plain Dealer one Michael Heaton misses the point ... or decides to play dumb just to get a complete column based on people accusing other people for borrowing/stealing ideas.
I'm not really sure where I have Michael. He writes like he's familiar with the band: "But all Steely Dan songs have narrative lyrics." and "The very name Steely Dan comes from the novel "Naked Lunch" by William S. Burroughs."
But he also writes: "This piece of bellicose business between rock stars and movie stars doesn't surprise me one bit. I've seen so much of this kind of bickering between artists over the years, I've come to expect it."
Just to end the whole piece: "Owen Wilson talked to the press last week in an attempt to put the whole controversy behind him. He said he was unfamiliar with Steely Dan, never heard the song "Cousin Dupree" and that he just wanted to get back to work on his new movie. He said it's called "Hey Nineteen.""
Which could be seen as Michael getting the inside joke of that film title. Or maybe not.
Read Michael's column here.
And enjoy the weekend!