In GQ this month, Claire Hoffman sits down with rapper Drake for the magazine's cover story. Drake is not a horribly interesting person, and celebrity profiling is not usually a horribly interesting craft, but Hoffman wrote a great piece. Within the few hours she spent at the rapper's mansion in The Valley, she essentially lived through a real-life chapter of a 16-year-old's fan fiction. Drake wined and dined her (with white wine spritzers!) in his backyard terrace—complete with waterfalls, bronze animal statues, and a giant fire pit "fit for a king from Middle-earth"—and they watched Sixteen Candles. All that was missing was a bearskin rug.
The odd mini-profile on Prince that ran in the most recent New Yorker's "Talk of the Town" section made a big splash, mostly because of Prince's religious pronouncements of going door-to-door as a Jehovah's witness and remarks concluding that being gay was wrong. However, his flack went to Perez Hilton and said that Prince had been "grossly misquoted" and accused the writer of the piece, Claire Hoffman, of not using a tape recorder. ("How unprofessional!" Perez squealed.) The New Yorker stood by their story in a confirmation to Wired. But turns out there was a very good reason the interview wasn't recorded: Hoffman explains in an interview that Prince "wouldn’t let me use a tape recorder or my notepad."The quote that got Prince in trouble was, in response to a question about gay marriage and abortion, “God came to earth and saw people sticking it wherever and doing it with whatever, and he just cleared it all out." So, how did Hoffman get that? She explains, "I walked out and sat in my car and wrote for an hour. I don’t have long chunks of dialogue, but I was able to remember stuff." Forbidding a writer of making any record of an interview is a pretty canny move for a celebrity—he can claim to be "misquoted" on anything he didn't like. It's her recollection against his. And given that the Prince version (via Perez) — "What His Purpleness actually did was gesture to the Bible and said he follows what it teaches, referring mainly to the parts about loving everyone and refraining from judgment." — sounds like P.R. puffery, we're going with Hoffman here and Prince is, as usual, DOING IT RONG. [Via Emdashes]