Dan Quayle Storms Out of Mellencamp Concert
Mon, 24 Jul 2006 09:43:47
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Musicians know that expressing their political views can alienate portions of their audience. For John Mellencamp, one of the co-founders of Farm Aid, onstage politicking is part of the show, but at least one fan at a July 14 show in Lake Tahoe wasn't prepared to hear Mellencamp's message. That fan was former vice president Dan Quayle, who stopped by to hear some music from the Heartland while in town for a celebrity golf tournament. But instead of "Ain't that America, home of the free," he got Mellencamp introducing "Walk Tall" with the words: "This next one is for all the poor people who've been ignored by the current administration."
Quayle, who served under the current president's father, promptly decided that "enough is enough," according to spokesman Craig Whitney. "He wasn't going to sit there and listen to this."
Mellencamp hadn't known that Quayle was in the audience, but he didn't offer any apologies for ruffling feathers. "I still feel there are many people left behind by this administration," he said later. "Not talking about problems doesn't make them go away. It's kind of telling that he chose to walk out as I was doing a song about tolerance."
Quayle struck back, saying that he hadn't been that impressed with the concert in the first place. Through a publicist, he said, "Well, I think Mellencamp's performance was not very good to begin with, and the comment put it over the top."
--The ARTISTdirect Staff