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White House press secretary Carney is major rock nerd

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One of these men is the Senate Minority Leader. The other played drums on "Voodoo Child" and "All Along The Watchtower." See if you can guess which is which. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The never-ending debt ceiling debate appears to be making White House Press Secretary Jay Carney punchy. Here’s how he began this afternoon’s press conference:

CARNEY: Last night, the President called Senate Majority Leader Reid, Speaker Boehner, Senate Minority Leader Mitch Mitchell, and House Minority Leader Pelosi to discuss progress we are making — Mitch McConnell, sorry — Mitch Mitchell, in addition to being a great drummer for Jimi Hendrix, is also a guitarist in Guided by Voices — (laughter) — a different Mitch Mitchell.  (Laughter.)

Q: Whoa!

CARNEY:  It just — let’s motor on here.

Q: I didn’t know the President was a fan of Guided by Voices.

CARNEY:  I’m working on him.

This exchange comes two weeks after Carney ended a semantic debate over “cutting” vs. “slashing” entitlements by citing Guns ‘N Roses guitarist Slash. Which proves just how big of a rock geek Jay Carney is (although I should probably not throw stones in that particular glass house).

In honor of Carney’s hipsterish flub — and to help him expose the President to the joys of late-90s indie rock — here is Guided By Voices’ “Teenage FBI.” (Yes, I know this song was recorded after Mitch Mitchell left GBV. I’m posting it anyway because it’s got FBI in its name, which gives it a federal angle.)

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And for good measure, here’s the drummer version of Mitch Mitchell, going nuts with Hendrix at the Monterey Pop Festival:

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  1. Counterfeit Meats Says:
    July 20th, 2011 at 10:46 pm

    Well, Mitch would’ve played on Teenage FBI at Edgefest ’96 in Dayton, which was the last “classic lineup” gig until a year ago, so I’ll give you half-credit, especially since you *get* that Carney obviously was thinking about the GbV man and not Hendrix’s drummer when he made the slip.

    ROCK ON!