Badly Drawn Boy

Damon Gough, aka Badly Drawn Boy, has something of a history of mistreating audiences — he lost his shit on an L.A. audience in 2010 — but it’s still kind of a shock, and definitely a drag, to hear about it happening again.

During his set at England’s Northampton Music Festival last week, Gough was heckled by an audience member, leading the singer to throw his harmonica brace into the crowd and shout, “Look I just had a relative of mine die the other day so fuck you, you cunt.”

Today, the following message was posted on BDB’s official Facebook page:

Badly Drawn Boy wishes to apologise to any of the audience that were offended by any of his comments from the stage at the Northampton Music Festival on Sunday. Damon Gough said today; “Both personal and work pressures have come to a head in the last month or so and sometimes I find it very difficult to control my emotions whilst on stage. So in light of this, I have decided to take a complete break from everything for the next three months, something I’ve not had for fourteen years. I’m really sorry if I offended anybody on Sunday in Northampton.”

Gough has canceled his upcoming performances — 8/18 at Ropetackle Arts Centre, 8/19 at Strummer Of Love Festival and 10/14 at Words & Music Festival. Check out footage of the onstage confrontation.

Here’s hoping he’s doing OK and feels better after some time off.

[Photo via the Daily Mail.]

Comments (20)
  1. Hardly the blow-up the press might have you believe, is it? Non-story? I don’t know, but it does sound like he was being provoked. It takes two to tango, as people so often say.

    • the british press would never blow anything up, how dare you

    • Yes, I should say, as the writer who covered this for Stereogum, that I personally found his reaction to be fairly benign. To me the story is not his reaction onstage but his choice to to take a break from music following the confrontation. I don’t know the guy but I like his music and I detest hecklers. Whatever the cause, it sounds like he’s going through a rough time and I sincerely hope he’s doing OK.

    • He wasn’t being provoked whatsoever – he walked onto the stage and said, ‘I’m in a fucking bad mood and I don’t wanna be here.’ Then he stopped the first song halfway through, saying, ‘I’m bored already but at least I’ll still get fucking paid so I don’t care,’ before proceeding to insult the crowd, the town and his own backing musicians’ artistic integrity by not playing a single song all the way through and continually stamping his feet and whining his sob-stories.

      As for my own personal take on events – I thought he totally made up for the banality of his music and his ‘one good song’ by having a meltdown and peppering a family day out with repeated bellows of, ‘Fook off ya cunts.’

      But hey, I’m not a parent.

  2. he got heckled. the heckler deserved the fuck you.

  3. i was wondering what he was up to these days…i really think he needs to form a ‘side’ band, get with someone to share the vox and songwriting etc, a female single would be the most logical. and yes the heckler DID deserve the ‘fook off wanka tossa shite bawstard!’

  4. Since I first heard Bewilderbeast, I knew I would be a lifelong fan of Damon. Wherever he is, I hope that he knows how important his music is to so many people.

  5. Can we all agree that hecklers are indeed scum? I don’t care who you are, when someone is sharing something personal with you, you shut the fuck up and listen.

    • He wasn’t sharing anything with anyone, he was purely there as a cynical, money-grabbing disgrace (which he gleefully announced after refusing to sing or finish any song without shouting ‘fuck off cunts’ after every other line).

      He was only heckled after repeatedly calling people in the audience cunts, slurring ‘what a fucking shithole’ the town is and stating how he’s ‘actually got a life’ unlike the cunts who stood in the rain with their kids to watch him. Stop trying to defend the indefensible, that clip is from well into the gig after repeated unprovoked abuse from Mr Gough, and frankly, I’m surprised he didn’t get twatted by a member of the crowd after kicking and throwing instruments and stands into the front couple of rows where there were plenty of kids standing.

      It was the audience that were heckled not this ‘woe is me’ tosser.

      • so i guess you don’t like him then?

        • I actually liked his first album and I also liked the tune he did with Unkle and then he did the About a Boy soundtrack and I was pretty turned off immediately, not being a RomCom fan (or female).

          As a performer, he was the most objectionable waste of space I’ve ever seen. I actually enjoyed the gig in a masochistic kind of way because I thought it was hilarious but I’m someone who regularly goes to loads of amazing of gigs and festivals, so couldn’t care less about BDB in Northampton – I went because my friends and their families were going and I always like to see good live music.

          That was the problem – I actually felt sorry for the fans that had turned up in the hope of seeing something cool, the people that don’t get to traipse about the country to events because they’ve got kids or they feel they’re just too old. This as a perfect opportunity for them to hear an artist who clearly is talented perform in front of them. His performance, aside from the insults, was appalling. He made no effort whatsoever, sang dreadfully and barely finished a song.

          I love Anton Newcombe from The Brian Jonestown Massacre who has a reputation for kicking off at gigs, but he does it because he feels the talent and the music’s not being respected by the crowd – he lives for the music. When BDB states, ‘I hate doing this, I don’t even wanna be here,’ you just feel like, well fuck off then you pampered, privileged nobhead. The lives of the majority of the people stood in this audience are infinitely worse than yours, get over it.

  6. i certainly don’t see the big deal, why even he should appologize for for telling someone where to go y’know? go to any band in a pub, any concert, or even street buskers and heckle them (i mean..but don’t) and you deserve to be called a vagina. Also, has he really not taken a break for 14 years…i mean, i find faults in that as well. At the end of the day, it sucks to be heckled if you’re on stage, nobody likes it, and if you’re emotions (or blood alcohol levels) urge you strong enough to lash out and tr and verbally abuse artists, then you are in fact a cunt, and whether or not the artist or any number of public guests retaliate, you shouldn’t be going to events. full stop.

    • Absolutely breathtaking battychunter, Bobby. Staggeringly incorrect on all counts.

      Were you at the gig? And if not (which you clearly weren’t, based on your conclusions), how on earth can you make such sweeping assumptions as to what occurred?

      Drably Yawn Bod should apologize because he was warmly received onto an afternoon, market square stage at a free family event with rapturous applause. He categorically was NOT heckled until he’d aggressively and repeatedly called families, grandparents and children cunts, completely without provocation, for just turning up to watch him play in the rain. This was not Brixton Academy or Nottingham Rock City or the Bloodstock Festival, this was an alcohol-free afternoon music event next to fruit stalls and ice cream vans.

      I was four rows from the front with my best friend’s six year old niece sitting on my shoulders when this shambolic embarrassment said directly to me, ‘Why don’t you fuck off to the pub you cunt?’ Maybe because we also had her 4 year old and 18 month old nieces, as well as her 8 month old nephew alongside us?

      When you don’t know any of the actual facts and just decide to base your ‘authoritative’ judgements on your own ill-informed imagination then I suggest that you keep your baseless ‘I-know-everything even-though-I-can’t-string-a-coherent-sentence-together’ opinions to yourself because they are actually completely worthless. Idiot.

  7. Either I’m reading these comments with an English inflection or stereogum is hot over the pond.

  8. Maybe if he was a well drawn boy he wouldn’t be so pissed off.

  9. Judging from Spencer Rose’s comments it sounds like should take a break for good. Plus his albums since Bewilderbeast have been utter shite, save for a few tunes.

  10. He’s a fucking baby. End of story.

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