It is the year 2013, and the notions of artistic integrity and “selling out” are just things that oldsters say to remind the kids how hilariously out-of-touch they are. But I am still genuinely surprised to see that Jello Biafra and Ian Mackaye are playing Coachella this year. I’m not going to be all hilariously self-righteous while signing checks from MTV (good people to work with, for real) but I really do wonder what made Ian Mackaye — a guy who is famous specifically for eschewing corporate money and requiring that tickets for his shows be extremely affordable — decide to play a monster corporate festival with sponsorships everywhere and $300 tickets.
Like, specifically, what led to that decision? Jello, I can kinda guess — it’s possible that dude may be more or less broke still at 55 years old and really need the money. Ian Mackaye’s net worth is estimated to be $25 million, meanwhile — and while those “celebrity net worth” websites probably overestimate their numbers dramatically, even if they’ve got it wrong by a factor of 25, it’d be hard to say that he just really needs the cash. What a weird way to check out of 30 years as a standard bearer for a certain kind of punk rock ethic.