Dashboard Confessional: where do you stand?

Chris Carrabba

The Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids has named and shamed US bands Smashing Pumpkins, Dashboard Confessional and MUTEMATH over their tobacco-sponsored gigs in Indonesia next month.

Meanwhile Stereophonics are copping it in their home country of Wales from anti-smoking group Ash Wales. Australian bands The Vines and Wolfmother have already been publicly attacked by University of Sydney health experts.

So far only Wolfmother seems to have responded, effectively saying it doesn’t care that it is being used by the tobacco industry to push cancer onto children. People are paying them, so they’ll play.

That’s fine. I’m not sure whether Wolfmother has ever pretended to have much of a social conscience. They seem to care more about hair.

But Dashboard Confessional really needs to give its fans a serious explanation. Band member Chris Carrabba has played at cancer benefits, for chrissake. In July he performed for 200 cancer survivors at a fundraising show for Love Hope Strength, the “world’s leading rock and roll cancer foundation”.

In August he played at a gig to raise money for American and Canadian children mixed up in the sex trade.

What about the Indonesian children who might be tempted to take up a lifetime addiction to tobacco after seeing how cool it is at Dashboard Confessional’s show in Jakarta?

The charity gigs are highlighted on the band’s website, so their fans may be forgiven for being a little confused about just where exactly Dashboard Confessional stands on issues such as tobacco industry marketing to children in developing countries.

(Photo courtesy of Will Fresch via Wikimedia commons)

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