In one of the most ridiculous court cases ever, a judge has recently ruled that a dismissal of the two members of the Insane Clown Posse’s appeal to have their fans, or Juggalos, to be removed from the FBI’s list of gangs. One of the stories that came out of this was of a man who was unable to join the army after being told as a fan of the band he was technically part of a gang. In the hope of showing how absolutely insane these accusations can get, I have made up a list of other musicians who have or had FBI files on them.
Throughout his time in New York in the 1970s, Lennon was constantly bothered by the Bureau due to his anti-war stance and their general fear of change which John Lennon seemed to exemplify in a lot of ways. As well as watching him almost constantly, they also regularly pushed for his deportation from the country, citing his use of drugs as one of the possible reasons.
MC5 are known for lyrical content that highlights their highly left-wing stance on many issues, something that obviously didn’t stand well with the established powers. When MC5 played Chicago’s Lincoln Park in support of the Democratic National Convention, that led to various riots and landmark legal action against activists, the FBI were in the crowd filming the band. The weird footage is still on youtube today, the lack of sound high disconcerting.
Nine Inch Nails
In 1989, Trent Reznor had himself “killed” on camera as the music video for the NIN song Down In It. The footage took off in a balloon camera and was then discovered by a farmer who found it so convincing he sent it to the FBI. They closed the case when Reznor came in to answer any questions they may have about the possibility of him being deceased.
After Straight Outta Compton found its way into the mainstream, the media exploded over the controversy that followed it. While NWA claimed that they’re just writing about their own lifestyle and the situation they were born into, the FBI sent them a letter after being pressured by a religious group called Focus on the Family. In the letter, a member of the FBI outlined what they believed would happen nationwide due to songs such as Fuck The Police, along with veiled threats regarding their opinion on the message contained within the song.
Ol’ Dirty Bastard, one of the members of the Wu-Tang Clan, was known for his often absurdest lyrics and eccentric nature. Eight years after his death, the FBI released the file they had on him that contained possible connections to three separate murders, a police shootout, accusations of wearing a bullet-proof vest almost at all times and evidence that connected other unnamed members of the clan to certain crimes.