Rockers swear at concert! — film at 11

I didn’t grow up in the Golden Age of Rock ‘n’ Roll when guys like Elvis did nothing more controversial than swivel their hips.  But this is where Prince Edward Island’s idea of musical entertainment has been frozen in stasis for the past fifty years, evidently.  Charlottetown’s municipal government is presently up in arms about Nickelback swearing and pouring beer over the crowd at a Canada Day concert.

…according to the Charlottetown Guardian newspaper, Mayor Clifford Lee said at a Monday night council meeting that he has been overwhelmed with complaints by people who were at the show. Organizer Tourism Charlottetown had pegged the concert as a family event and asked the bands to watch their language, but the request was apparently ignored.

“The number of emails I’ve got from visitors from off-Island, the number of phone calls I’ve gotten, the number of people who approached me on the street is just unbelievable,” Lee said on Monday, as cited by the paper.

“People were really, really disappointed and really upset.”

— News Staff, “Nickelback laces P.E.I. family show with F-bombs“., 10 July 2007.

I know, I know.  It is hard to imagine any members of our musical elite being accused of conduct unbecoming Canadian role models.   What would Anne Murray (peace be upon her) say?   Rockers behaving naughtily and swearing at a concert, of all things.  F-bombs, no less!  My virgin ears have never heard such words.

Also on the bill were Staind, Hedley, Finger Eleven, Buckcherry and Default.

Though obscenities were used throughout the event, it was the Nickelback set that most were offended by, according to reports.

In addition to frequent use of the F-word, the band also reportedly rolled out a table that was filled with beer and began throwing it on members of the audience in a non-drinking section of the crowd that included underage teens and children.

— News Staff, “Nickelback laces P.E.I. family show with F-bombs“., 10 July 2007.

I don’t know whether any of these folks have ever heard actual songs performed and recorded by Nickelback, but swearing and beer are not the shocking parts.   The shocking thing is that people still shell out money to hear Canada’s belated answer to Creed and Soundgarden.  Don’t get me wrong, I think they are talented guys — if not exactly my cup of tea.  But who would have guessed that this slightly saccharine-enhanced grunge would be popular twelve years after the original fan base had to move out, shave, and get jobs.

And Charlottetown voters, you get an extra bonus.  This local politician manages to avoid sounding like a naïve horse’s ass by pointing out that rock bands are not exactly notorious for their circumspection.

Some city councillors were enraged by the band’s behaviour, and questioned the wisdom of hiring such a group for an event intended for the entire family.

Coun. Rob Lantz, who attended the concert, described it as “ridiculous” and said that asking “a bad boy rock star to not use profanity is simply adding fuel to the fire.”

— News Staff, “Nickelback laces P.E.I. family show with F-bombs“., 10 July 2007.

Please elect Councillor Lantz your next mayor.  He seems like he’s somewhat aware of the musical currents post-1957.

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