Saturday, January 29, 2011

Limp Bizkit -- "Break Stuff" (2000)

It's just one of those days
When you don't wanna wake up
Everything is f*cked
Everybody sucks!
It's a very, VERY special "2 or 3 lines," boys and girls.  Our newly-appointed Chief Executive Senior Contributing Editor -- let's call her "Linda," since that is her name -- is back with another shocking tale about one of the many rock concerts she has attended.

As you may recall, "Linda" wrote previously about attending a Black Sabbath concert at the legendary Fillmore East in New York City in 1971.  (Click here if you haven't read this masterpiece.)  I am anointing her with this rather extravagant title because (1) she has provided me with more free content than my other guest writers, and (2) she is a girl, and "2 or 3 lines" likes girls better than boys.

Today's post is about a 2000 Limp Bizkit concert in Kansas City that "Linda" attended along with her 14-year-old son.  Many of you are no doubt muttering to yourselves that she deserved to have him taken away from her and put in foster care, but let's remember Matthew 7:1 -- "Judge not, that ye be not judged."   

Without further ado . . . take it away, new Chief Executive Senior Contributing Editor!
Limp Bizkit was a rap metal band formed in Jacksonville Florida in 1994 by vocalist Fred Durst and his friend, bassist Sam Rivers.  The band also included River’s cousin John Otto on drums, guitarist Wes Borland and DJ Lethal on turntables. 
Fred Durst
Fred’s day job was as a tattoo artist.  He once gave a tattoo to Fieldy, a member of Korn (an already well-established rap metal band in the mid-1990s) when they were playing a show in Jacksonville.  Fred gave his band’s demo tape to Fieldy who was initially unimpressed, but a second, significantly better demo was well liked by all of Korn, so they passed it on to their record label.
Limp Bizkit’s first album wasn’t particularly successful, but they toured constantly and eventually ended up playing on the Family Values Tour & Ozzfest in the late 1990's.  Their fan base grew rapidly and when their second album, Significant Other, was released in 1999, it debuted at number 1 on the Billboard 200 chart.  It was nominated for and won several major awards and eventually sold 16 million copies worldwide.
With song titles like “Nookie” and “Break Stuff,” is it any wonder that Limp Bizkit grabbed the attention of teenage males everywhere? 
In spite of his sometimes doofus behavior, Fred Durst was actually a fairly astute businessman and most definitely a master of self-promotion.  He was named a vice-president at Interscope, his record label.
Fred became almost as well-known for his numerous headline-grabbing feuds with various other artists – including Eminem, Scott Stapp of Creed and pop princesses Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera – as he was for his band’s music.  Britney later admitted, though, to a short-lived and much-regretted liaison with Fred during a studio collaboration.  There’s just no accounting for taste.  (I’ll leave it to you to decide whether I’m referring to Fred or Britney.)

It was into this three-ring circus atmosphere that Fred dropped the idea of a free tour to take place in the summer of 2000.  [Editor's note: Fred announced this tour exactly 11 years ago today -- January 29, 2000.]  Fred was an outspoken proponent of Napster, the controversial music file-sharing company, which agreed to sponsor and foot the bill for the concerts.  Cypress Hill, a Latino hip-hop/rap group from Southern California, was asked to open the shows. 
Napster logo
Fred stated that the free shows were Limp Bizkit’s way of paying back their U.S. fans.  Of course, with a new album set to come out in the fall of 2000, what better way to stir up excitement and anticipation over its release?
The “Back To Basics Tour” free shows were announced only a couple of days before they would take place.  The venues were small and tickets were first-come, first-served.  So once the date and place for the next show was made public, throngs of Bizkit fans would descend on the venue the night before and stand in line to receive a ticket and wristband the next morning. 
When one of the free shows was (surprisingly, to me) announced for Kansas City, my 14 year-old son – a die-hard Bizkit fan—begged to go.  Caring, indulgent parent that I am, I said “okay, sure,” not having any idea what I was getting myself into.  I just knew that it was unbelievably important, at the time, to my son. 
On the morning that tickets were to be given out, I dragged myself out of bed at the ungodly hour of 3:00 am and got in our minivan to drive my son and I to Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kansas.  I took along a huge insulated coffee mug, filled to the brim, and drank it on the way there to get myself fully awake.

Memorial Hall in Kansas City
Memorial Hall is a 3500-seat venue that was built in 1925.  Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Bob Dylan, R.E.M. and U2 have all played there.  Patsy Cline's last concert was there on March 3, 1963 -- two days before her death. 
When we arrived, the grounds around Memorial Hall looked like a mini-Woodstock, except without the mud.  Hundreds of people had camped out overnight in tents in order to get a good spot in the line for tickets.

I parked the “Black Beauty” (my suburban soccer-mom 1993 Nissan Quest minivan that looked extremely out of place in such a setting) and we took a place in line.  There was a young man in line near us who was a dead ringer for Fred Durst, except without Fred’s ubiquitous red baseball cap.  

There was a lot of whispered discussion about whether Fred was actually in our midst.  He wasn’t, but the young man was certainly enjoying all the attention, especially from the girls.
I was one of only a handful of parents there, but I did have the presence of mind to know that I wasn’t going to turn my 14 year-old loose by himself at something like that.  The line continued to snake around the building and by sun-up there were thousands of people there.  There was definitely a party atmosphere, but for the most part, the crowd was orderly and pretty mellow (owing quite possibly to the pot that permeated the already hot, humid Midwestern summer air).  The concert promoters had thoughtfully provided bottles of cold water for everyone, so those helped to cool everyone off a little.
(You're lucky -- I could have used
a much worse picture than this one)
About now, the coffee and water I had consumed had unfortunately run their course and I desperately needed to find a “facility.”  The venue doors were locked, which left the set of of disgusting looking porta-potties right in the middle of the crowd.  No way!  But I couldn’t risk driving anywhere because the line might start moving at any moment.
Fred Durst’s doppelganger graciously agreed to hold our place in line for a few minutes, so we walked (actually, I was hobbling by now) back to the van and got in, trying to come up with any possible solution for my now extremely urgent problem.  

The big, empty coffee mug that I had tossed into the back seat when we arrived caught my eye.  Thankfully, the van's windows were deeply tinted and no one was anywhere close to the van.  My son got out of the van and stood guard, just in case someone walked nearby.  You’ll have to use your imagination for the rest of the details, although I’m sure that won’t be difficult!
I think this is a good place to take a break -- maybe you too need to visit the nearest  bathroom or go find a big coffee mug.  I promise you won't have to wait long for the rest of the story.

Here's the official music video for "Break Stuff," which was named "Best Rock Video of 2000" by MTV.  (As you'll probably notice, the lyrics have been thoroughly censored.)  The video includes cameos by Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Eminem, Flea (of the Red Hot Chili Peppers), Pauly Shore (one of the least funny comedians in history), and many others.

Here's a video of Limp Bizkit performing "Break Stuff" at Woodstock 1999.  This recording was definitely NOT censored.

Here's a link to use to buy "Break Stuff" (the explicit version OF COURSE) from Amazon:

1 comment:

  1. Many thanks to your "chief executive senior contributing editor" for a mesmerizing post about Limp Bizkit, circa 2000. The great memories she created for her 14-year-old son far outweighed the potential for permanent damage! Nothing can replace that kind of an experience. . . . Great job, "Linda!"