Maynard James Keenan says Jack White is right in banning cell phones at his concerts

Jack White had recently talked about his idea of banning cell phones to his gigs. Now Maynard James Keenan has jumped on the bandwagon too.


                            Maynard James Keenan says Jack White is right in banning cell phones at his concerts
Maynard James Keenan and Jack White (Source : Getty Images)

Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan has admitted that Jack White is right to ban phones at concerts.

Back in January, a report by NME discussed how Jack White had banned the use of mobile phones at his gigs in order to create a “100% human experience”, urging fans to lock away their phones in pouches that could only be opened in certain demarcated zones. 

White explained this decision, describing it as an “interesting art experiment” and saying that it would have been “funny” had he surprised gig-goers with the rule and they had “got mad and demanded their money back”.

But in all earnestness, the point White was trying to drive home was that concertgoers often lose the magic of the moment while trying to record the performance on their phone cameras instead of paying 100% attention to the performer. 

“I really react to the crowd, just like a stand-up comedian would,” White said. “If I finish a song and go, ‘Ta-da!’, and it’s crickets, I’m like, ‘Well, I don’t know what to do now.’ Am I supposed to play a heavier song, a faster song? Do you want me to play acoustic? Do you want me to leave? I’ll leave!'”


Now, in a recent interview with Uproxx,  Maynard James Keenan has said that his band are going to start doing the same. “You try your best to make a policy of courtesy with people around you especially nowadays. Especially with someone like Dave Chappelle, this is your art. You’re gonna sell this thing. This is what you are gonna make your living on, and for you to bootleg it and put it online undermines his ability to make a living on his art. It’s proprietary, intellectual property. So there’s that element in the past, with the bootlegs and what not," he said in the interview.  "But now, with the way phone are, they’re just annoying."

“And the more you’re tapped into that thing in front of you, the less you’re actually tapped into the experience around you. I’m a strong believer, supporter, advocate of the aural tradition and there’s got to be better ways. We try to figure out some way, but I think at some point people are just entitled and they just want what they want. They don’t give a fuck about the people around them. And so, yeah, we have to go the way of Jack White and start putting shit in pouches.”

The sentiment is echoed in Maynard's recent song 'Disillusioned,' a song directed at all the smartphone addicts of the world. The song featured as the lead single on the album 'Eat the Elephant' by A Perfect Circle, Maynard's side project with Billy Howerdel. The album is the band's first original release in 14 years.

In our review of the album, we called it "a comeback album that most bands would kill for." Read the full review here