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Fiona Apple Addresses Heckling Outburst

'If anyone gets in my way, I'm going to get them out of my way,' singer-songwriter says

Fiona Apple performs in Louisville, Kentucky.
Stephen J. Cohen/Getty Images
October 8, 2013 1:55 PM ET

Fiona Apple spoke up about a recent incident in Portland in which she booted a heckler from her concert at the Newmark Theatre, telling Pitchfork, "If anyone gets in my way, I'm going to get them out of my way." With just two songs left in her set, an audience member shouted at Apple, "Get healthy – we want to see you in 10 years," to which the singer-songwriter responded: "I am healthy! Who the fuck do you think you are?"

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"She hurt my feelings," Apple said. "I don't think what I look like is relevant. And by the way, this whole'"unhealthy' thing has me baffled. It's really confusing to me why anyone would have an opinion about that. And [the heckling] just takes you out of [the live performance]. People around me try to tell me that's not going to happen, but it always happens. It's really disappointing. I can't laugh – I'm an emotional person."

While Apple admitted she was still a bit shaken by the outburst, she added that she was mentally preparing herself for any future incidents, though she added she wouldn't hesitate to throw someone out again. Apple also addressed the nature of the heckler's comments, which followed crude remarks about her weight and appearance throughout her career.

"At this point, emotionally, it doesn't get easier to hear those criticisms – but it gets easier to be resolute about my reaction to it. Which is just, 'Go ahead and call me ugly, call me skinny, call me crazy and speculate as much as you want, but not at a show.' I don't think that there's anything meltdown-y about that. I don't have any problem getting angry at someone who insults me in the middle of a show."

Seeing the incident as another moment to grow and learn, Apple went on to dismiss claims that it was another meltdown or fiasco – more words that have also been used throughout career.

"As a person who performs onstage, it's good to be emotionally open," Apple said. "If you mess with someone when they are in that state, it's like you're messing with an animal when it's eating. What do they expect me to do? What am I supposed to do? Am I supposed to stop in the middle of my show and have a conversation with you about what I look like? . . . I feel bad for calling her a bitch, and I always apologize for anything that I feel bad about, which is usually just reactionary cursing. But otherwise, I have nothing that I feel at all apologetic about from last night. Everything that happens with me gets made out to be a fiasco, but I have every right to do everything I've ever done. I stand by everything I've ever said, apologies included."

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