Before we get into the meat of this story, most of which concerns the asinine ramblings of spoiled celebrity adolescents plugging their music, let’s just go ahead and ask the obvious: why is this in The New York Times? Willow and Jaden Smith, teenaged progeny of Will and Jada, both have music releases this month, and the Grey Lady’s Su Wu sat them down to ask for their opinions on life, art, the universe and, you know, stuff. “Willow, the 14-year-old musician whose debut single, ‘Whip My Hair,’ went platinum when she was not yet a teenager, explains that the gift of life is ‘looking at nature and being, like, ‘Wow, I am so lucky to have a body and to breathe and to be able to look at this.’ To which her older brother Jaden, a 16-year-old actor and musician, adds: ‘And the huge, terrible thing the world would be missing by not expressing yourself.'” So there.
But a sample of their tastes in music and books reveals they are either precociously gifted or just precocious. Willow reads books about quantum physics, while Jaden prefers “The Ancient Secret of the Flower of Life and ancient texts; things that can’t be pre-dated.” Like a lot of high-schoolers who resent being forced to read Fitzgerald or Hemingway, Jaden isn’t a fan of the western canon, but he has the answer: “There’re no novels that I like to read so I write my own novels, and then I read them again, and it’s the best thing.” Both talk a lot about Prana energy, and Willow is given to Zen-by-way-of-Oprah statements of self-empowerment: “Breathing is meditation; life is a meditation. You have to breathe in order to live, so breathing is how you get in touch with the sacred space of your heart,” and “I think by the time we’re 30 or 20, we’re going to be climbing as many mountains as we can possibly climb.” Jaden, meanwhile, knows he can be a fashionista, but he really wants to be Huckleberry Finn. “I like to go to places with my high-fashion things where there are a lot of cameras. So I can just go there and be like, ‘Yep, yep, I’m looking so sick.’ But in my regular life, I put on clothes that I can climb trees in.” Willow Smith’s “3” is available here. Jaden Smith’s “Cool Tapes Vol. 2″ will be available at midnight tonight “with the download of his new app called Jaden Experience.” In fairness, all teenagers think their thoughts are profound, so we shouldn’t really pick on the Smith-spawn for their inane drivel, should we? It’s not clear if The New York Times paid (or was paid) for this interview; all I know is that Scientology is not mentioned once, which makes this either a remarkable example of responsible journalism … or a promotional puff piece.