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Mumford And Sons may be one of the biggest bands in the world right now, but that also means that they have more than their share of detractors. There is an "I Hate Mumford And Sons" Facebook page, and the British group has been slammed by a number of press outlets in their own country. Asked about the biggest charge against them, that they are not "authentic," frontman Marcus Mumford told the U.K.'s Guardian, "The authenticity thing has never been an issue for me. Not since I came to the realization that Dylan, who's probably my favorite artist ever, the richest artist for me, didn't give a s*** about authenticity. He changed his name. And modeled himself on Woody Guthrie. And lied to everyone about who he was."
Critics accuse the members of Mumford of being former private school students trying to masquerade as bohemian folk artists.
Banjo player Winston Marshall said, "We get accused of inauthenticity because we play the instruments we play." Marshall cited British blues guitarist Peter Green as an example of the same thing, saying, "It's not like he's saying he's from the Delta. It's not like we're saying anything like that."
The band also addressed speculation that they are a Christian act, because of Mumford's family having a Christian background. Bassist Ted Dwane said, "We're not all religious. In fact none of us are, really. We have a full spectrum of beliefs . . . Saying the word 'God', 'Jesus' -- it happens in a million rock songs."
Ever since moving 600,000 copies in its first week of release back in late September, the band's second album Babel has stayed in the Billboard Top 10, where it's currently Number Seven.
Mumford And Sons will play a handful of U.S. shows on the East Coast next February, but has yet to announce a full North American tour. A live DVD called The Road To Red Rocks, filmed last summer, is due out in January.