Rage Against the Machine Prevented From Playing Protest Gig, Go A Cappella

Rage Against the Machine Prevented From Playing Protest Gig, Go A Cappella
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that Rage Against the Machine plus Republican National Convention equals trouble. And that’s exactly what police got on Tuesday (September 2) when the reunited rock radicals attempted to play a left-wing rally in St. Paul, MN, the city where the party’s convention is now being held.

According to the Minneapolis/Saint Paul Star Tribune, problems began when the group showed up at the Ripple Effect festival for a "surprise performance” close to the 7:00 p.m. cut-off time and without a proper permit. In turn, the police blocked Zack de la Rocha and company from taking the stage, which obviously didn’t sit will with the swarm of 200 or so Rage fans in the audience.

As the band negotiated with officials and organizers backstage, the crowd launched into "The Star Spangled Banner” and the Rage calling card "Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me." When it became clear the band would not be playing onstage, front-man Rocha and guitarist Tom Morello walked out into the crowd, doing hand-clap-heavy a cappella renditions of "Bulls On Parade” and "Killing In The Name” with a little help from a megaphone. Then, according to reports, they led a crowd — which surged to about 2,000 thanks to radio reports of the band’s appearance — into the downtown core, leading to more protesting.

The Star quoted Capt. Mary Schrader of the Minnesota State Patrol as saying Rage could not take the stage because they were not included on Ripple Effect’s permit. However, the festival’s website states that permits "held no artist-specific provisions."

Rage Against the Machine are set to play a proper show tonight at St. Paul’s Target Center. Fingers crossed.

Rage Against the Machine in St. Paul