Until this morning, I was not aware that Third Eye Blind is still a thing. That’s when I spotted the numerous headlines hailing the band’s heroic performance at some sort of RNC after-party. According to Vox, the band was guilty of “surprising guests with messages of gay rights and science and serenading them with some of the band’s more obscure songs.” Off with their heads.*
To be fair, I imagine it would be difficult — if not impossible — for Third Eye Blind to fill a ten-song set without resorting to “some of the band’s more obscure songs.” But according to Yahoo!’s coverage of the controversy, the complaints were primarily about what they chose not to play: “Multiple Twitter users particularly objected to the fact that the band didn’t play its 1997 hit ‘Semi-Charmed Life.’” As it happens, “Semi-Charmed Life” was seemingly to serve as the encore before an appropriately Trump-like last-minute audible:
But I have a different takeaway from that set-list: frontman Stephan Jenkins could have done so much more than just take the temperature of the room on science. He could have educated them:
Gun to my head (and this is the RNC, so there very may well be one), I’m not sure I could tell you what Darwin is all about. And to be fair, neither could Rap Genius, which seems to have settled on, “It is clear” — so you know it’s anything but — “that self-proclaimed atheist Stephen [sic] Jenkins is, through music, sharing some insightful views that are to some rather shocking.” But whatever else is in there, this particular audience could have really benefited from hearing the song’s refrain, a lyrical synopsis of natural selection:
The chromosome divides, multiply and thrive
And the strong survive, and the strong survive
Then again, maybe better not to give them any more ideas.
*Trying to split (pun intended) the difference between stoning them for homosexuality and burning them at the stake for heresy.