My youth seems to have asumed a constant distance from the present with the result that the upper boundary of those times gets larger as the years go by. When I was a kid the phrase "authenticity of experience" was bandied about enough for it to be burned into my consciousness. Authenticity of Experience assumed a dominant place in a value structure that was built on a minimalist frame, a frame trussed up by things like "do no harm," and "it's all good."
To the extent that a lot of that is puerile bullshit, I think I understand AKMA's reaction to the offhanded use of the word "authentic" to describe musical performances that are not necessarily so. Oddly, I think the intellectual rigor with which he frames his objection diminishes its force. Not that I think imperfection or lack of rigor is necessary for authenticity, but rather that I think the concept itself deserves a lot more attention than we've given it.
Meanwhile, here's a tidbit that turned up that seems to have some value. From "Constructing Authenticity in Rock," by Allan Moore:
This brief discussion (1) takes as its starting position the refusal of two assumptions upon which the current discourse of authenticity appears founded, and which have led to countless fruitless discussions. (2) The first assumption is that authenticity is inscribed in music. The implication here is that any listener hearing the voice of Bruce Springsteen, let us say, will immediately perceive the truth of his expression. On the contrary, it appears to me that authenticity is a value which must be constructed. It is only once a particular audience has learnt to interpret the particular non-verbal sounds that Springsteen makes as indicative of his honesty, and has learnt to value that expression, that authenticity can be attributed to him. This assumption perhaps needs little attack these days.
The second assumption is more recalcitrant: it is that authenticity can be ascribed to a certain performance, and this assumption is held not only within the discipline of music. Again, however, this has led to much pointless debate about whether a particular performance can legitimately be read as authentic ('true to its origins') or not. Rather than ask what it is that is being authenticated, in this brief paper I ask who. I believe that this furnishes a more useful model for investigation of musical authenticity. Although my examples here deal exclusively with rock music, I believe the model to be employable in other fields.