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Why are artist’s cancelling the right for artists to be and do better?


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Being a sexual abuse survivor and subsequently doing many stupid things over my lifetime to date from which I have learned, I find it extremely harsh that some Australian artists are withdrawing from a music festival line-up because of a band who previously said some stupid things several years ago.

The members of the band Sticky Fingers have had their drug addiction and mental health struggles well documented and yes what they said at the times in question were offensive and quite frankly dumb. However, they have publicly apologised numerous times. What more can they do? They have and are trying to do and be better. So, my question is – is it right to try and cancel artists who have repented and are actively trying to reform from their previous bad ways?

I’m all for rapists, paedophiles and murderers being cancelled for life. But are we going to continue to cancel other prisoners who have served their time and prevent them from moving on with their lives and contributing to society? How does that help anybody but the RWNJ idiots we already have in our society – all of which I might add are pretty much against what these same artists say they stand for and profess to support?

So, what good does trying to cancel this particular artist really achieve apart from King Gizard & the Lizard Wizard looking like a bunch of fascist twerps? Yes, they stood up for what they believed in for which a band many years ago apologised for their behaviour and are trying to be better artist and citizens generally. Good on ya. NOT! Does this artist not deserve a chance at redemption?

This writer thanks Peter Noble and Blues Fest for helping to give an artist who has had both drug and mental health issues a second chance. I know from my own experience as a troubled young man a couple of decades ago I would not be here on this earth anymore if it were not for people giving me a second chance to make things right. By the way I’m not a fan of Sticky Fingers music on a personal level, but I do think they deserve a chance at righting past wrongs.

Triple J, Australia’s national broadcasting youth network stopped playing this same band’s music when the initial issues occurred but has also not given the band a chance of redemption. In our view this also makes them just as bad an actor, which has probably negatively impacted the mental health of said artists.

Has the broadcaster thought about this? Probably not despite the fact they talk about mental health issues on air all the time. What does that make them? Hypocrites in this writer’s view. I wonder how that makes the band King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard feel having their music played on a network that supports, by its own actions, the demonisation of artists with mental health issues.

Going back to King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, all of their musical influences come from an era of many bands who by today’s standards would be called misogynistic, some of whom were accused of assaulting women. Are they now going to make a stand to their true beliefs and stop playing music? I did not think so – a total bloody bunch of hypocrites.

On a final note, this band Sticky Fingers has Dany Lim who was viciously assaulted by police on their new album artwork with his famous statement “Smile Cvnts”. Is that not making a positive statement against Police Brutality? What are these other artists who profess to have such high moral standards doing to publicise bad actors whether that be police brutality, sexual assault, racism and murder? Oh, their confected outrage is fake…what a bunch of tossers!


  • Jakomi Mathews

    Jakomi was the original founder of The Music Void in 2007. He has deep insights into the inner workings of the music business and digital music generally from working with RWD Magazine and then Rock Sound in the UK during the early 2000's going onto oversea build some of the first artist mobile apps both before and just after the release of the first iPhone. He also worked with Muse's management for a short time and has managed an assortment of artists form Australia and the UK. He now has a new startup called goto.health focusing on disrupting the healthcare sector on a global basis.


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