RHCP: The X Factor Row

As many of you that post on Facebook RHCP groups already know, the UK’s reality ‘talent’ TV show the X Factor has been generating some comments, most of which are negative, thanks to a contestant called Janet Devlin (who is supposedly a massive RHCP fan) covering the Chili Peppers’ song, ‘Under the Bridge,’ as her chosen song on Saturday night. For anyone interested: TCS Facebook Page Janet Devlin thread

However, the whole argument seems to have taken a new slant this morning with several reports coming in of complaints from parents and anti-drugs charities over her actually being allowed to cover the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ song in the first place because it apparently glorifies drug taking.

(BTW I did consider whether to post this or not but it mentions Anthony Kiedis & the Red Hot Chili Peppers and it is in the news so is relevant I guess).

Anthony Kiedis Red Hot Chili Peppers Under the Bridge drugs reference article

Here’s an extract from one UK newspaper, the Daily Mail:

X Factor heroin uproar: Anti-drugs groups slam Janet Devlin’s song choice for live show as ‘irresponsible’

The X Factor is at the centre of a new drugs scandal following Janet Devlin’s dramatic exit from the show last night.

Viewers have protested over the 17-year-old’s song choice for her performance during the live results show.

Janet chose the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ infamous 1992 hit, Under The Bridge, which includes troubling lyrics about heroin needles drawing blood.

The song- which is about ex-addict Anthony Kiedis, 49, shooting up- has been slammed as an ‘irresponsible’ choice by children’s charities and anti-drugs groups.

The Sun reports that Claude Knights of child protection charity Kidscape complained: ‘The X Factor is a family show and this was a disturbing and irresponsible song choice.’

Drug charity Focus 12, which offers counseling to addicts, has reportedly labelled the decision tasteless for a purportedly family-friendly show.

‘The producers of The X Factor have a moral and social responsibility to the millions of children and teenagers who tune in,’ raged head Chip Somers.

‘They should be smarter about song choices, particularly given recent events on the show. The recent demise of Amy Winehouse should have shown us all how tragic drug and alcohol abuse is.’

‘It is not something that should be taken lightly.’

According to The Sun an ITV spokesman has responded to the outcry: ‘We won’t know if we have any complaints about this until Monday.’

The issue is particularly poignant considering ex contestant Frankie Cocozza lost his place in the competition after admitting to snorting cocaine.

Read the full account (the rest is about Janet leaving the show after being voted off on Sunday) HERE

My Comment: Normally I wouldn’t say anything but I really do think the point is being missed here. Yes, Under The Bridge does include reference to Anthony’s experiences taking drugs but I think to say it glorifies drug taking and is a bad example to children is taking it too far and just another example of political correctness going too far (here in the UK). People are quick to criticise but I see there is no mention of how Anthony overcame his addiction, or of his work e.g. with MAP/MusiCares and the money he helps raise that is used to provide rehab for musicians with an addiction. ‘Scar Tissue’ (the book) anyone?

BTW For those of you who want to see (you have been warned!) Janet covering the song; here it is:

This entry was posted in Anthony Kiedis, Red Hot Chili Peppers, RHCP General by Squitherwitch. Bookmark the permalink.

About Squitherwitch

I've been a RHCP fan ever since I heard Under The Bridge way back in the mists of time. I brought BSSM and then their other albums but RHCP were just another band I listened to (I was a massive GNR fan at the time) but that changed once I heard Californication! I've been involved with the online RHCP scene since 2006, getting more heavily involved as time passed, and eventually the time was right to set up my own website dedicated to the band and thus, TheChiliSource was born. Since then I've also set up AnthonyKiedis.net along with various Twitter, Facebook & Tumblr pages connected to my websites and RHCP.

4 thoughts on “RHCP: The X Factor Row

  1. I agree totally. The song is about ‘a dark part’ of his life, he doesnt glorify drug taking at all. So what are they saying? if we dont talk about it then it wont happen…….NOT!!! Too much ado about nothing!!! Some people really need to get a life.

  2. These idiots obviously never bothered to acknowledge the longing and pain in Anthony’s voice, John’s guitar, Flea’s bass, and Chad’s drums.

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