Ian MacKaye

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Ian MacKaye in 2008

Ian Thomas Garner MacKaye (born April 16, 1962) is an American singer-songwriter.


Perfect Sound Forever: How did the idea of 'straight-edge' come about?

Ian MacKaye: It was just the title of a song that I wrote. I guess I coined the phrase but certainly never intended to start a movement.[1]

Uno Mas: You may not take responsibility for the "Straight Edge" movement, but you are credited with it. How do you feel about that?

Ian MacKaye: I'm credited because I coined a phrase and wrote a song about it. I'm not going to spend any more energy than I already have explaining that. From the very beginning I've tried to say that this is not my opinion. That whole thing just makes me realize I don't have any control over what people think of me. And I don't really give a fuck.[2]

  • "When people who are songwriters say 'That's my property and if you give it away for free then I'll lose my incentive,' then, well, good riddance." [3]
  • "I think that the idea of straight edge, the song that I wrote, and the way people have related it it, there's some people who have abused it, they've allowed their fundamentalism to interfere with the real message, which in my mind, was that people should be allowed to live their lives the way they want to." [4]
  • "An unlocked door means that, occasionally, you might get a devil come in, but a locked door means you have thousands of angels just walk by." [5]

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