It's that time of the season: Time to stop and stock of all the great things we've accomplished in the past year, all the fun we've had and all the great shows we've seen. You know, end-of-the-year listicle season. But enough with all the cuddly bullshit. The end of the year more often a good reason to stop and consider everything we've fucked up lately, which can be a good and cathartic thing to do. It's also an excuse to have some fun.
The other day, we highlighted our favorite Dallas concerts from throughout 2014. Needless to say, we think there were some pretty amazing shows on the list. But there are plenty that we'll be remembering from this year for all the wrong reasons: the meltdowns, the cancelations, the bro country. So let's do this thing: the biggest shitshows of 2014.
See also: The Best Dallas Concerts of 2014
Puddle of Mudd at Trees
There should be a sliding scale for washed up nu metal band meltdowns. Let's call it "Six Degrees of Scott Stapp:" Have you fought your own audience members? Have you thrown up on them? Have you faked being homeless in order to ask those same fans to crowdfund your shitty new solo album? Well, former Puddle of Mudd singer Wes Scantlin ticked off a lot of these boxes, all in the course of one show at Trees in April. He was not only visibly drunk but also lip synching. When fans called him Milli Vanilli, Scantlin responded with professional aplumb: By throwing his mic and a bunch of water bottles into the crowd (allegedly injuring one poor person), taking off his shirt, and exclaiming, "It ain't my fault I'm the hottest motherfucker in the goddamn building."
Race relations in this country are fucked. There's really no way around it, as has sadly been reinforced repeatedly in recent months. But if you're Hank Williams Jr. it's apparently all the more reason to be a churlish, asinine bigot, even if that's exactly what got him fired from Monday Night Football. (Don't let the bastards get you down, Hank!) He didn't actually play Dallas, but in May he was just over the border at Choctaw Casino, and we could hear the racism all the way from here. He mimed hideous caricatures of African American people, did Native American war cries and got in plenty of good old fashioned Confederate flag waving between all his chaw spitting. But he didn't stop with the racism either; he threw in a "Cocksuckers!" exclamation for good measure, just to let us know he's a homophobe too.
Having a Perfect Pussy concert top out at 20 minutes is really nothing new, nor is there anything unexpected about controversy following the band around. But their stop at Three Links in June managed to spice things up all the same. This time the issue had to do with the show flyers, which depicted topless women in bondage. Singer Meredith Graves stopped the show to protest the flyers, giving an impassioned (and justified) speech. But the crowd was more than a little confused: The flyers had been removed before the show, and with it any context for her displeasure, thus leaving fans confused and not quite sure whether they'd been ripped off. Bonus points here for the fact that Graves really (really) didn't like our review.
Sometimes the most embarrassing shows are the ones that never happen. Case in point: David Allan Coe's visit at the beginning of July. That night, the show got all the way through the opening acts before Coe realized he didn't actually want to play that night. Silly David! And hey, he had good reason to feel that way: The concert, believe it or not, was outside. In the wide open air and everything. Once Coe had had his belated epiphany, he tried to shake down Gas Monkey for extra money, before packing up and leaving in a huff, without any acknowledgement or apology to his fans. That's what you call an outlaw.
Young Thug at The Prophet Bar
There was more of the same later in July when Young Thug was scheduled to play at The Prophet Bar. Once again, fans had already gotten in the door and were dropping money at the bar when suddenly things veered off course. Concerts in Dallas are apt to start well behind schedule, and none do it better than hip hop shows, but in Young Thug's case he just never showed up. Inevitably both the Atlanta rapper pointed his finger at the promoter, 365 Live Entertainment from Houston, and 365 points theirs right back. Young Thug's case looked a lot stronger not too long after, though, when a seemingly unlikely Partynextdoor show booked by 365 at Mercury Lounge (of all places) was canceled without explanation.
Why is this on the list? Seriously. We like Coors Light. We like "country" bands who "rap." We like bands who wear their own T-shirts at their own concerts. (Although we prefer it when they take them off, if you know what I mean.) We like when our favorite bands play the same song more than once. We like the corn fields and the red clay roads and white picket fence and that summer time smile. We liked this show. Why did we include it here? Must've been a mistake.
Country shows have featured a little disproportionately on this list, but that's not the fault of the genre. For every lamentable bro country show and hardened old racist that comes through and shits all over the place, there's a top-notch act like George Strait or Sturgill Simpson to celebrate. With the Eli Young Band's house party, the trouble had nothing to do with a bad attitude; it was all technical trouble. But the timing couldn't have been worse: EYB were headlining their House Party, and frankly things sounded terrible. It got so bad that the band stopped playing for several minutes without explanation and started shooting T-shirts into the crowd. Because fuck it, T-shirts. But by that point, the Rangers ballpark had long since started clearing out.
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Sky Ferreira at Fun Fun Fun Fest
Like Hank Jr., this show wasn't in Dallas -- in fact, it was three hours away in Austin. But what the hell. Call it a bonus. Besides, about a third of the audience was from Dallas anyway (we counted, honest), and most everyone seemed to come away with the same impression: That Sky Ferreira's set at The Belmont was loads of fun in spite of being terrible. You see, Ferreira has a reputation for bad shows, and even running off stage crying. But she played it cool at Fun Fun Fun Fest, losing track of her backing track on multiple occasions and even replaying the opening song of the set -- the very first one! -- because it had been such a mess. And for whatever reason, we kinda loved it.
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