Alex Kapranos’ Confession About The Franz Ferdinand Fight

Rock and roll has always been synonymous with wild parties, out-of-control behavior, and, well, rocking out. It’s no wonder that many people assume rock stars are inherently aggressive, given the chaotic sounds they create. While there are plenty of rockers who have managed to avoid the stereotypical party life, Franz Ferdinand is not one of those bands.

Band members are expected to have tight-knit relationships in order to keep the music alive and prevent disbandments, but history has shown us that rock bands can’t escape the occasional clash. In the world of rock and roll, sometimes things can spiral out of control, leading to explosive confrontations and the potential destruction of great bands.

Franz Ferdinand, a Scottish indie rock band, has managed to maintain a seemingly close bond between its members despite a few lineup changes. Formed in 2002, they have released five albums so far, with their music taking the world by storm. The band’s members, who played in various bands during the 1990s, came together through a series of chance encounters and musical collaborations.

For instance, Alex Kapranos and Paul Thomson met at a party and hit it off, eventually writing songs together. Kapranos even taught his friend Bob Hardy to play bass after receiving a bass guitar from Mick Cooke of Belle & Sebastian. Their formation story and continued success make it seem as though the members have a solid relationship.

In a 2009 Spin interview, Alex Kapranos talked about an incident involving a full-blown fight between the band members in 2004. The fight, which began over something as trivial as a light switch, was so intense that it had to be paused several times for the band to handle important matters such as performances and award presentations. The most interesting part is that Kapranos admitted that when he looks back at it, he is very embarrassed and had confessed that he had been a ‘complete idiot.’

Kapranos detailed the event, saying:

“Bob and Paul are very peaceful. It’s Nick and I who are more extreme characters. At the end of 2004, we were playing a festival in the Zenith, which is this big arena just outside of Paris. I can’t remember what started it — something about a light switch. This huge fight erupted, and we ended up laying into each other in the dressing room. Then we were told, ‘You have to be onstage in five minutes.’ So we played the gig. It was a great gig! Then we went backstage and picked up the fight. Chairs were upturned, and food was everywhere. Then someone comes to the door and tells us that the guys from our label want to give us our gold discs.

So we stopped the fight again and got the gold discs. And then our manager says, ‘Oh, we’ve just got this message from the queen. She wants you to come play a garden party at Buckingham Palace.’ And we’re like, ‘What the f*ck is going on here?’ But we go back inside and start the fight again, and now there are gold discs flying all over the place. I remember being dragged out of the dressing room by five guys and Jarvis Cocker staring at us. It was totally embarrassing. I realized I’d been a complete idiot.”

Bands are like any other family, and sometimes brothers fight. It doesn’t mean they don’t care about each other or their craft; it’s just part of the wild and untamed world of rock and roll. As the members of Franz Ferdinand have shown, even the most heated of conflicts can’t overshadow their shared love for the music. As you just read, the band stopped their fight to perform; they took a break to get their gold discs and once again to talk about a message from the queen. That fight is now a funny memory to look back to.