Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Rage Against the Free Stuff Machine

So much for socialism. World-famous socialist rock band Rage Against the Machine loves to rant against corporations, capitalism, for-profit enterprise, commodification, and commercialization. But if you want to book the band at your venue, you'd better have lots of commercialized commodities available for them, at your cost. All spelling, grammer and emphasis is theirs:

Artist Hospitality Room Stock
Following items must be stocked in ARTIST Dressing Room #1 no later than 12:00pm (NOON)

6 X PAIRS OF COTTON BOXER SHORTS (4 X Large and 2 X Medium)
72 x liters FIJI still water (2 dozen MUST be in small bottles @ room temp)
1 x case of Smart Water
12 x Bottles of Grolsch Beer
12 x Bottles of Amstel Light Beer
6 x Bottles Becks Dark Beer
6 x Bottles Corona
6 x cans Coca Cola
6 x cans Pepsi
6 x cans of Red Bull
6 x Canada Dry Ginger Ale
12 x cans assorted diet soda
12 x Cool Blue Gatorade
2 x quarts FRESH squeeze orange juice
1 x 1/2 gallon Ocean Spray CRAN CHERRY
1 x Bottle Stages Leap Merlot or Cabernet
1 x Bottle of Jack Daniels
2 x bottle Dom Perignon Moet et Chandon champagne
1 x Veuve Cliquot champagne
1 x Pints Of Almond Milk
1 x Box Of Throat Coat Tea
1 x Jar Spun Honey (Quality Honey)
1 x Continuous Supply Of Hot Water
4 x Fresh Lemon
1 x Large Jar Of Medium Hot Salsa
1 x Large container of QUALITY Quacamole
1 x Large Bag Of Tortilla Chips
1 x Large Bag Of Thin Pretzels
1 x Loaf Of Fresh Bread (French Italian Or White)
1 x Loaf Of Wholemeal Bread
1 x Bag ORGANIC, RAW, UNSALTED Macadamia nuts
1 x Jar of ALMOND or CASHEW PENUTBUTTER (usually found at health food stores)
1 x Tray Of Fresh Fruit To Include Peaches , Strawberries, Bananas, Oranges, Apples And Grapes.
1 x Small Deli Tray (Swiss, Monterey, Cheddar Cheese, Lettuce Tomatoes)
1 x SmallTray Of Vegetables (Broccoli, Carrots, Celery, Cauliflower, Green And Red Peppers, Leaf Spinach With Ranch Dressing Dip And One Additional Dip).
1 x Small Deli Tray Assorted Meats, Including At Least 1/2lb Fresh Turkey Breast.
1 x Small Tray Of Assorted (Sweets) Hard Candy And Gum (Starburst, Large Bag Of M & M's, Hershey Assorted Miniatures, Reeses Peanut Butter Cups).
A Small Assortment Of Condiments: UNSWEETENED KETCHUP, Mayonnaise, Spicy Mustard, FAT FREE Salad Dressing, Salt & Pepper Etc.
An Adequate Supply Of Cups, Bowls, Plates, Napkins, Paper Towels And A Bottle Opener.


olly said...

Not that I'm totally trying to defend Rage here (I happen to like their music as a disclosure, and think that a lot of it is valid commentary, despite some of their socialist leanings), but there is a VERY real possibility that they have very little to do with this list.

Record labels have a habit of sending these on to venues without the band being really all that aware, or fully approving it, and there are a few reasons why they do:

1) Record labels like to offset their own costs by pushing costs to the venue. So while the band may say to their label "hey, by the way, while we're out here touring, can you make sure we have some stuff that we need" (I have no issue with them asking their record label for this, as it's no different then me asking my employer to buy me a new computer), the record label simply tells the venue to pay for it. Chalk one up for RIAA sleaziness.

2) Record execs like to build up a 'backstage myth' around bands. It happens all the time, most of the time without the band even being aware of what's going on. Many of the 'they had a clause in their contract asking for 36 bottles of Jack Daniels and an ounce of coke' crap comes from some A&R twerp trying to make as many outrageous demands as possible, and then 'leaking' that to the press.

3) The band asks for something fairly reasonable, such a the honey and throat stuff on there (if you've heard De la Rocha screaming, that doesn't surprise me), and the meals for their crew.. then it gets padded and padded as more people get on board. Unfortunately a touring band's requests can sometimes start to look like congressional bills -- what starts as a request for one thing then gets 900 totally unrelated things added on. This gets passed to a lawyer at the record company or in the bands management, and then printed as if it came directly from the band itself. Case in point: I have a friend who makes a fairly decent living as an artist on the road, he's opened for Wilco, the Gin Blossoms, some other random bands. Well he and his band were playing a show that featured Tom Petty, and they got an email from Tom Petty's management asking everyone involved with the tour, roadies, supporting bands, etc if they'd like anything once they got to the venue. This was being written into Tom Petty's venue contract, and soon enough there were requests for all sorts of random shit from every roadie, etc.

Anyway, not saying that they aren't culpable, they may very well be, but I don't think it's necessarily them either. The whole recording industry is so fucked that it's hard to seperate the villains from the innocent when it comes to label vs. bands.

Aaron Kinney said...


j/k ;-)

Yea you make some good points. I, as well, have always loved Rage's music. I've seen them live 3 times in fact. But this list just blew me away. Yet I didn't consider the details that your 3 points brought up. Good thinking, Olly :-)

Brad Reddekopp said...

Too bad they don't have better taste in beer.

AphexMandelbrot said...

As someone who has followed tours - backstage and front - only to write long strings of meaningless text in relation to the act - The comment by Olly is 100% correct.

Take that authority as "Some guy on the Internets who says he knows" - or, whatever you like; however, there is a wide difference between lists that are obviously compiled as group-efforts for all involved - and artists taking on the classic Diva mentality.

Thanks for saving me time typing, Olly.

Blogger said...

Do you love Coke or Pepsi?
SUBMIT YOUR ANSWER and you could get a prepaid VISA gift card!