Exploring the Persona of ‘Mr. Not-So-Brightside’

(RepublicanDaily.org) – “It was never our intention to offend anyone!”

American rock group “The Killers” apologized to fans after receiving backlash from bringing in a Russian fan on stage to play with them during a concert in the country of Georgia.

During the band’s performance in Batumi’s Black Sea Arena, vocalist Brandon Flowers brought the fan on stage to play drums for “For Reasons Unknown,” one the Killers’ songs. Flowers told the crowd, “We don’t know the etiquette of this land,” introducing the fan as Russian and asked the concertgoers if they were “okay with a Russian coming up” to play.

Georgia was previously a part of the old U.S.S.R. Soviet bloc, and has a rocky and tenuous relationship with Russia at best, after the latter invaded it in 2008. Russia still holds around 20% of Georgia’s territory.

Flowers’ stunt drew a few cheers but most of the crowd booed – the band played anyway. In a seeming attempt to explain his actions and placate the crowd, the Killers frontman said that what he did was a gesture of “brotherhood.”

“You can’t recognize if someone’s your brother?” Flowers asked the audience. He continued to ask if people were defined by the borders of their countries. “Am I not your brother, being from America?” Flowers also called for calm, saying “I don’t want it to turn ugly,” and said he considered everyone in attendance to be his brothers and sisters.

Still, several audience members walked out of the concert – but the band played through the entirety of its prepared set.

The incident is the most recent in a series of stunts by a number of bands that have offended cultural sensitivities in the name of promoting some sort of advocacy.

English band “The 1975” recently had to cut a performance in a music festival in Malaysia short after the lead singer, Matty Healy, laid down an expletive-filled rant against the government of Malaysia during a performance and proceeded to kiss bandmate and bass player Ross MacDonald. Homosexuality is outlawed in the Muslim-majority country.

The rant and the kiss sparked outrage from the producers of the music festival who lost millions of dollars in revenue after the government shut down the entire festival in response to the act. But more notably the band was slammed even by the country’s local LGBTQ+ community, who accused Healy of staging a “publicity stunt” and having a “white savior” complex, especially in light of his flippant attitude in the aftermath of the incident.

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