The Time Rage Against The Machine Members Got Naked To Protest PMRC
The year 1993 was full of unforgettable memories for both Rage Against the Machine and their fans who participated in 1993’s Lollapalooza Festival. Before they joined the festival, Rage Against the Machine had released their self-titled debut studio album on November 3, 1992. The festival was a great chance to promote their album and to be known worldwide as a brand new band.
Before the Rhode Island concert of Rage Against the Machine, the band’s frontman Zack de la Rocha lost his voice. However, it was impossible to cancel the show because it was one of the greatest chances that they had throughout their careers. Canceling a show in one of the biggest cities of the USA would be a terrible mistake. The band members decided to do something else instead of performing on the stage.
Why Was Rage Against The Machine Members Naked On The Stage?
In 1985, the Recording Industry Association of America agreed to use Parental Advisory labels on some of the band’s songs and albums which are including the themes of sex, drugs, and strong language when the Parents Music Resource Center demanded censorship on these kinds of work. Like many other rock and metal bands, Rage Against the Machine members also reacted against this labeling system.
Tim Commerford shared his thoughts saying:
“We went on stage and it was back when Tipper Gore, Al Gore’s wife, had just started the PMRC to spearhead the Parental Advisory stickers that they, to this day, put on records. We were against that, we thought it sucked. We were like, We shouldn’t play this show, we should protest it.“
When they arrived at Lollapalooza Festival in 1993, the band decided to turn their misfortune into a chance to protest the Parental Advisory label. They went out to the stage completely naked only with black electrical tapes on their mouths while the initials of Parents Music Resource Center written on their chests. They stood on the stage naked for 15 minutes. Some people in the audience heavily reacted to them by booing and throwing coins at their sexual organs.
Did Rage Against The Machine Members Regret Their Naked Protest?
Rage Against the Machine’s protest against the Parents Music Resource Center’s censorship became a phenomenon and an unforgettable moment for the band. When the members recalled the time of their being completely naked on the stage, they stated that they didn’t feel any regrets for their bold decision during 1993’s Lollapalooza Festival except for one thing. Apparently, RATM guitarist Tom Morello thought it would be a better idea to be dressed when the police officers arrived at the scene.
Here’s a statement of the band’s guitarist TomMorello:
“The time I wish I had my pants on was when the police arrived.“
The band wasn’t charged for their extraordinary protest. According to Morello, people paid more attention to their being naked on the stage while they should have reacted to the censorship in the music. Overall, Rage Against the Machine members didn’t regret their naked protest but they wished to wear their pants on before the police arrived.