Big Thief's Adrianne Lenker Responds to "Sad" Joke Bumper Sticker

"If you're a real fan of what I'm creating, wear kindness and compassion on your sleeve, and be kind to those who disagree with you"

BY Megan LaPierrePublished Mar 1, 2024

Big Thief frontwoman Adrianne Lenker is gearing up to release her new solo album Bright Future later this month, and she's shared more about her futuristic vision addressing a fan-made bumper sticker that has been making the rounds on the internet this week.

As seen above, the DIY car merch includes the message "when they don't like adrianne lenker /:" and what seems to be a stock photo of one person dressed in business-casual strangling another. The person who made it probably thinks that it's pretty funny, but the singer-songwriter herself decidedly does not.

She took to her Instagram Stories today to address how seeing the bumper sticker made her feel "sick and sad" after a friend sent her the photo. 

"Even jokingly, I do not like the idea of any form of violence, verbal or otherwise, under the name of my music — which is created to create the opposite of that," Lenker explained. "If someone you encounter does not like me or my music, it doesn’t matter. Be kind to them please. There is enough fighting, the last thing I want is fighting over something as small as my music. If you are a real fan of what I am creating, wear kindness, and compassion on your sleeve, and be kind to those who disagree with you."

In a subsequent post, she clarified that she understands that the sentiment behind the sticker is not meant to be serious. "But jokes can affect people too, jokes often have a sliver of truth," Lenker wrote. "Mean sarcasm has never felt good to me, and it’s all the more diminishing when someone makes light of your genuine response to that sarcasm."

The artist added, "What I’m saying is, this doesn’t feel good to me."

Lenker and her Big Thief bandmates have made commendable efforts in holding their fans to a higher standard — especially compared to, say, the people who sic their stans (or the stan armies who sic themselves) on anyone who utters a slanderous syllable. They called out the entitled fans criticizing the changes they made to the live staple "Vampire Empire" when they finally released a studio recording last year, as well as asking that their audiences not talk during the opening act while touring behind Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You in 2022.


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