Claiming they were misled, Toronto indie rockers The Darcys have cancelled their appearance at a concert in support of Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti’s campaign for mayor.
The Darcys say they were told that the Rock Your Vote concert, going down March 31 at Tattoo Rock Parlour (567 Queen Street West), was a benefit for Sheridan College.
“We booked the show and it was part of the Sheridan Student Union, and we woke up to a tweet”—one from Jonathan Goldsbie—”that said ‘The Darcys must be playing this show ironically’ and had a link to a poster with the candidate’s name and everything,” The Darcys drummer Wes Marskell tells Torontoist. “And I was like, ‘What the fuck’s going on?’ And then it turned out that this was a show we agreed to that had been refaced. So I called and I said, ‘We can’t do this. This isn’t our thing.’”
While the band says they have never met Mammoliti and that they don’t support any particular candidate for mayor, they do oppose the Ward 7 York West councillor’s stance on Bill 167, a piece of legislation that extends spousal benefits to same-sex couples. (The band supports it; Mammoliti opposed it.)
“I started doing my research [on Mammoliti] and that was one of the main points that came up a number of times,” Marskell said. “And we thought out of respect to friends and family who are gay that its doesn’t make any sense for us to help further his campaign with our music. We’re not overtly endorsing anyone else. It’s just we can’t be out there playing rock shows for anybody we don’t agree with.”
An attempt to contact Mammoliti at his City Hall office was not successful, but a spokesperson for the councillor was quoted earlier today in a National Post article as saying that the purpose of the event was to raise social awareness, and that Mammoliti would only speak at the event for ten minutes. A spokesperson for the Hyacinth Group was quoted as adding that the concert had always been billed in support of the councillor, which is news to Marskell.
“I had a contract and it had nothing to do with his name. It was nowhere near it,” Marskell said. “It’s weird because you’re a young band and someone offers you money to play a show and you have part of a tour and a 7-inch coming out and this is a huge payday, maybe you should just swallow it. But it makes more sense to do what you think is right. And that’s what we did, if it makes any sense.”
But Marskell does admit saying no to the cash stung quite a bit.
“It was a lot of money, man,” he said, “God damn. We gotta find a new way to pay for our 7-inch.”
: Since the Darcys pulled out of the Rock Your Vote show, Make Your Exit got in touch with Torontoist to let us know that they too will not be playing the concert as originally planned. “We had no idea the show was for the candidate,” Make Your Exit’s Mike Dellios told us in an email late last night. “We would like to avoid readers thinking that we are in support of this campaign.”