Enlarge Photo by Tim Cadiente

Billy Howerdel on A Perfect Circle Fans Taking Photos: “It’s Just Rude”


A Perfect Circle’s strict “no photos” policy on their current tour has been riling up some feathers in the music community, with over 60 people ejected from a show in Reading, PA and complaints of overzealous security who booted fans for simply taking their phone out of their pocket to check the time.

Maynard James Keenan commented on the policy last week, encouraging fans to “unplug and enjoy the ride,” and now the band’s guitarist and leader Billy Howerdel has shared his thoughts as well. In an interview with the Montreal Gazette, Howerdel offered the following:

“First of all, it’s just rude.

“Putting up a phone in front of someone’s face so they get to watch the show through it? Getting a memento of the show – sure, I’ve done it myself. But then you ask, ‘What am I gonna do with this?’

“The other point is – people talking about the show is so much more powerful.

“We’re inundated with videos and images, and getting back to a campfire conversation, letting people express how they felt in the experience – it says something more.

“And it speaks to, what does the music mean to you, and how do you want to tether it to your experiences in your life?”

We’ve said it before but we’ll say it again: Howerdel is not wrong. It IS rude, it does distract from the experience, and it’s ultimately a useless activity (I’ve barely looked at any photos and videos I’ve taken at shows after the fact).

But that’s not the point. The point is that bands who rail against this kind of behavior at shows are stuck in the past and they’re fighting a losing battle, much like the fight against the rise of streaming services earlier this decade. I get it: it must be super distracting — and disappointing — to look out at a sea of phones while you’re on stage putting your all into your performance. But asking folks to stop taking photos is not only ineffective (as evidenced by the fact that there are PLENTY of photos and videos of the tour on Instagram) but it’ll create resentment towards the band. That’s not good for business. Either embrace the change or at the very least begrudgingly accept it. We live in a different world than we did 25 years ago.

APC have several dates left on their tour. We caught the tour in Brooklyn earlier this month and it was certainly a cell-phone worthy spectacle!

November 17 Pittsburgh, PA Petersen Events Center
November 18 Cleveland, OH Wolstein Center
November 19 Highland Heights, KY BB&T Arena
November 21 Detroit, MI Fox Theatre
November 22 Grand Rapids, MI The DeltaPlex Arena
November 24 Chicago, IL UIC Pavilion
November 25 St. Paul, MN Xcel EnergyCenter
November 28 Spokane, WA Spokane Arena
November 30 Vancouver, BC PNE Coliseum
December 1 Seattle, WA Key Arena
December 2 Portland, OR Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum
December 4 Eugene, OR Matthew Knight Center

[via Ultimate Guitar]

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