Former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters gave an interview to the LA Times this morning where he offered his apologies for defacing Elliott Smith's memorial mural with his viral campaign for his upcoming The Wall Live shows.
“Though the oft-abused wall has also been a favorite target for taggers and is frequently overwhelmed by non-Smith-related writing,” writes the Times, “local reaction to Waters' wheat pasting, including an L.A. Weekly blog post, was swift and critical. In a phone interview Tuesday evening, Waters apologized to any Smith fans who found his choice of walls callous.”
Here are the highlights of Waters' apology:
“It was absolutely an accident,” Waters said. “I didn't want to disrespect Elliott Smith's fans, and I've instructed (the team) to remove the wheat paste immediately. It was a random pasting in the normal course of this, and I want to make it public that we had no intent to offend or cover up something precious.”
As we had guessed in the comments section of our previous post, Waters was not aware of Elliott Smith's music nor of the significance of the Silver Lake wall:
Waters, who said he was unfamiliar with Smith's work until this incident, said the national wheat-paste campaign is being coordinated from his New York offices and that the street art team based there didn't know the wall's importance to L.A. music fans. […]
“That's why I was so incensed when I read that article that said I paid someone to disrespect Elliott Smith,” Waters said. “I admit I didn't know his music, but I've talked to people who do and it's clear he was a young man who felt deeply, and any empathetic person wouldn't have an issue with publicizing that quote.”
“I would guess, and this is only a guess,” he said, “but it's my guess that he would have been sympathetic to that message.”