Michelle Shocked’s bizarre, cut-off radio interview

Michelle Shocked in 2003 (Jim Cooper/AP)
Michelle Shocked in 2003 (Jim Cooper/AP)

Michelle Shocked quarreled with a talk-radio host and quickly hung up Thursday during what was supposed to be her first interview since the anti-gay rant that has concert halls across the country cancelling shows.

The folk-rocker first failed to pick up the phone, leaving Web radio broadcaster Nicole Sandler listening to an answering machine. (Hear Sandler’s podcast) Once she finally tuned in, the connection was plagued by delay and distortion because Shocked was apparently listening online at the same time. (“Turn down the radio!” Sandler yelled at her. “You gotta listen in the phone!”) And when she finally spoke, it seemed that she simply read from a meandering semi-apology her publicist released a day earlier. (“I believe in a god who loves everyone. My faith tells me to do my best to also love everyone. Everyone, gay or straight. . . I may disagree with someone’s most fervently held beliefs but I will not hate them.”)

Sandler, a longtime fan, tried to press for more explanation, but Shocked stuck to the script until the line was dropped. When the host got through again, they began quibbling about what Sandler explained was a five-second delay; Shocked began counting slowly to 20, apparently to prove it was longer. A frustrated Sandler yelled, “Are you a homophobe or not?” And then Shocked signed off: “I want to talk to you in real time. I’ll see you on Twitter.”

Shocked has been getting more attention this week than since her late ’80s heyday, ever since she jolted fans by rambled on stage in San Francisco Sunday about the evils of gay marriage — not really a viewpoint in keeping with her earthy-crunchy Lillith Fair aesthetic.

Earlier: Michelle Shocked: I thought she was gay!, 3/19/13

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Amy Argetsinger is a staff writer for the Style section.
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Amy Argetsinger · March 21, 2013