Third Eye Blind teaches master class in trolling the RNC

Let’s say you’re a cog in one of two major American political machines, and you’re responsible for picking a band to play a charity event linked to aforementioned political party. Let’s also say that your political party doesn’t have the best record with musicians, for whatever reason. You have to cement your political relevance with a decent concert; a success might boost you a bit for a few days, but a failure will result in being widely roasted on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, FaceSpace, MyBook, whatever the kids are using these days.

So who do you reach out to? Someone that’s hip with the youngsters, who you tend to struggle with? Someone who has an avowed interest in your political platform? Someone who has really cool hair? There are so many choices. It might be easier to pick someone you definitely should not invite. No staunch members of the opposite party – okay, that’s an easy one. No band whose members belong to any groups you’ve managed to roundly piss off in the past election cycle. Perhaps, most obviously, no bands or artists who have spoken out against you – certainly no one who’s publicly refused to play for your party before and took you to task in front of the whole entire Internet. Right?

Someone’s getting a talking-to at the RNC today, because last night, on July 19, Third Eye Blind played a charity event at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, and boy howdy, things went not belly-up or sideways or even South, but in an entirely new cardinal direction never before seen.

That charity event was tied to the RNC, which frontman Stephan Jenkins took down last election cycle in a HuffPo piece (see above). Not content to simply turn them down again, he took the stage last night and proceeded to troll the folks in attendance.

Before closing their set with “Jumper,” arguably the only hit they played (and a song about a gay friend of Jenkins’s committing suicide by jumping), he attacked the GOP’s stance on LGBT issues, telling the crowd that LGBT people must be “welcomed into the American fabric,” and that folks need to “move forward and not live your life in fear and imposing that fear upon other people.”

He also asked the crowd about their stance on science. Apparently that didn’t end well.

Of course, all this poking the elephant results in some booing (particularly during his call for tolerance and equality immediately before “Jumper,” but throughout the concert as well.) His response?

If you’re having difficulty hearing, Jenkins says in response to someone booing, “You can boo all you want, but I’m the motherf$%cking artist up here.” The Internet is split between “wow, so, that happened,” “the worst thing Donald Trump has done today is make me like Third Eye Blind,” and “hey, Third Eye Blind, you punks are the worst.” Apparently they’re not bothered, though:

So, to conclude: holy cannoli, that really actually happened.

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Posted in Articles, Arts+Culture, Music

Ed Hirtzel is the Summer 2016 Fly intern. She’s currently an English Honors student at Millersville University. Her hobbies include scribbling, writing both fiction and nonfiction, and compiling useless information about cryptids.

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