Funk D’ Void, real name Lars Sandberg is the latest DJ to be caught up in controversy. The Glasgow DJ recently put up a T-shirt on his merchandise website for the group, Proud Boys, a self-described organization of “Western Chauvinists,” who have been linked to the alt-right by many. As a result of the t-shirts, his gig last night in Berlin at Salon Zur Wilden Renate was canceled.
"For tonight's event, The House Of Red Doors, we had booked Funk D'Void to play," Renate's statement reads. "It has been brought to our attention that through his online channels, Funk D'Void has connections to the far-right activist Gavin McInnes and his organization Proud Boys, who are promoting extreme right-wing values. These values are the opposite of what Renate stands for: inclusiveness, love, compassion, racial and gender equality. Any kind of racism or sexism will not be tolerated at Wilde Renate. We therefore decided to cancel the booking, of course the party will go on as planned. Love for all."
The Proud Boys was founded by Gavin McInnes, co-founder of Vice Media, though he left the media company in 2008. The organization is anti-feminist and anti-Muslim and according to their website is both anti-racism and anti-racial guilt, for closed borders, venerating the housewife and “reinstating a spirit of western chauvinism.”
"I'm mates with Gavin and I work designing merchandise for the show. That's it,” says Sandberg to Resident Advisor. “I'm actually more disappointed that I can't play at the party in Berlin tonight because I had a wicked costume set out and some old school electro-techno prepared for my four-hour set!"
In the end though, does the crime justify the response? Obviously there is no place for bigotry on the dance floor or within dance music, but opposing political views should be welcomed. Funk D’Void doesn’t look great here, but he may not be the devil of dance. We discuss this here.