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NOFX’s Fat Mike: “The U.S. is turning into some Puritan-Quaker country where everyone gets offended”

NOFX at Riot Fest 2016 - Friday
NOFX at Riot Fest 2016 (more by James Richards IV)

Last year, NOFX came under fire after Fat Mike made controversial comments on stage about the Route 91 Harvest Music Fest shooting. It led to Stone Brewing — NOFX’s partners for their Punk In Drublic signature beer and festival — to cut ties with the band and remove them from the festival. They later had even more shows cancelled and said, “we were told that NOFX is not welcome to play ANY big venue in the US.”

Fat Mike issued an apology for his comments, and then went under the radar for a while, but began resurfacing when they were announced for the inaugural Camp Anarchy festival (a replacement for Punk In Drublic) and then later announced for the California edition of Warped Tour’s 25th anniversary. He also recently released the debut album by his Cokie the Clown alter-ego, You’re Welcome, on which he addressed some of the Vegas controversy head on.

Now, Fat Mike has given a revealing interview with The FADER, where he discusses the aftermath of the controversy, the Cokie album, and more.

As the Camp Anarchy and Warped Tour announcements made clear, NOFX weren’t actually banned from performing in the US, and Mike talked a bit about that:

Our promoter canceled — my partner [not the venues]. I didn’t say who canceled it. I just said we were effectively banned in the U.S., which Fox News picked up, [saying], “Fat Mike responds to being banned in the US.” That was so fucking great. That’s how fake news they are. I wrote [about] it on Instagram, and Fox News picked it up as news, and then everyone bought it. We weren’t gonna play any shows for a year anyway.

Mike also joked that NOFX are making an album of stage banter called You Think Vegas Was Bad?

We’re making a banter record, by the way, of stuff we’ve said on stage. It’s called You Think Vegas Was Bad?. [Laughs]

Is that something you really want to do?

I’m doing it. Yeah.

What else is on there that you think would incense people more than that?

Well, that night in Vegas, I said, “Hey everyone, this is Hefe. He’s a rapist, also known as a Mexican, but people aren’t scared of him because he has no upper body strength.” That’s way worse! That’s way more offensive. We’re comedians. NOFX are comedians.

When asked if he thinks his style of comedy can work in today’s climate, he replied, “Yeah, sure. I don’t know about the U.S. The U.S. is turning into some Puritan-Quaker country where everyone gets offended.”

On Cokie the Clown’s “Fuck You All,” which addresses the Vegas controversy, Mike said:

I’d never been betrayed before like this. Not just people not standing up for me, but how my business partners bailed on me. Like, do you know who you got in bed with? What’s happening now is Punk in Drublic is back [now Camp Anarchy Fest], and I have a new partner, a way better partner. I was just gonna wait it out a little bit. Like I said, our ticket sales are bigger than ever. But the Cokie thing is a different beast.

And, lastly, on if he plans to think differently about his stage banter moving forward…

I’m still gonna say whatever the fuck I want. I know I was taken down for a reason. It was politically motivated. Nobody fucking cared Monday or Tuesday in Vegas. Some kid sold it to TMZ, and some country radio station got ahold of it, and then the Republican Party got ahold of it. That’s all it is. Punk rockers, you think they fucking care?

You can read the full interview here.

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