Chicago Sun-Times
Tuning in with Thomas Conner

Radiohead cancels surprise Thursday show; Thom Yorke feeling a bit under the weather

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Radiohead was set to make an announcement today about a surprise show at the Chicago Theatre Thursday night. It would have been the official launch of the art-rockers' North American tour, and all proceeds would have gone to charity. The band was organizing the show itself, without the assistance of Lollapalooza organizers C3 Presents or any other local promoters.

The group pulled the plug on the show early Tuesday, however, because singer Thom Yorke has been sick, and he wanted to rest up before the band's big headlining gig in Grant Park on Friday night, according to a spokesman for the band.

The famously anti-corporate Yorke isn't likely to feel any better when he does take the AT&T Stage on Friday and sees the ubiquitous branding for the telecom giant covering the platform. The group famously has fought performing under any corporate logos.

Lollapalooza promoters have insisted that none of the bands performing at the festival have made any complaints about corporate sponsorships -- and that if any of them do remark upon it onstage, the comments won't be censored like AT&T's Blue Room Webcast did with Pearl Jam's remarks about President Bush last year.

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6 Comments

How is Radiohead playing the AT&T stage at Lollapalooza any different than them playing the multiple Verizon Wireless Amphitheaters that they are hitting on their other north American stops?

O.K. Jim, we get it, you're against the corporate branding of the stages and site...

Somehow I think Yorke will get over it. I'm more concerned about him getting over this illness to ensure a bang-up set Friday!

Not to throw any fuel onto this fire, but does anybody suspect that this had less to do with Thom Yorke being "sick" and maybe more to do with C3 getting upset about Radiohead trying to put on a show without telling them? That is to say, perhaps C3 demanded the band put a stop to the show when they found out what was being planned? It feels like an exceptionally mean thing to do though. Let's just play on the assumption Thom really is under the weather and let's keep our fingers crossed the band will be at 100% for the show on Friday night.

The sound at a Radiohead concert at the Chicago Theatre would have been amazing. Hopefully, Mr. Yorke will be in top form this weekend.

On another note for Jim. I was awed last week by what a great live performer Tom Scholz is. Excellent guitar riffs and stellar keyboard playing.

Best wishes to all Radiohead fans !

I imagine that 20,000 people would have shown up for such a "surprise" event. Might have something to do with it being cancelled....

That is to say, perhaps C3 demanded the band put a stop to the show when they found out what was being planned

I doubt this, really. I don't see what C3 stands to gain by preventing a 3600-seat show for charity from taking place on Thursday night. I guarantee you almost every one of those 3600 people would be seeing the band at Lollapalooza the next day anyway.

And what's C3 going to do? By pulling the plug on a for-charity show, they look like the bad guys they really would be, and if they throw a fit and cancel radiohead's headlining set over this... Well, the PR and financial costs for C3 seem like they'd be pretty severe either way.

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This page contains a single entry by Jim DeRogatis published on July 29, 2008 3:07 PM.

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