The time Dave Matthews Band dropped raw sewage on 100 people in Chicago

DNA Info

A lot of people think the Dave Matthews Band is kinda shitty. For a certain subsection of people, that sentiment will forever be literal.

On August 8, 2004, the Dave Matthews Band was traveling through the country and one of their tour buses decided it was a good time to release the contents of its septic tank. It was one of the worst instances of sluicing-gone-wrong in adult-contemporary history.

The tank was emptied while traveling over the Kinzie Bridge in Chicago. At the same time, a Chicago River architecture tour boat was passing under the bridge.

The music website Consequence of Sound put together a "documentary" to memorialize this tragic time.

All told 800 pounds of raw sewage was dropped on about 100 people. There was a lawsuit—the bus driver got probation, community service, and a $10,000 fine. The band donated $50,000 to the Chicago Parks Department and another $50,000 to a Chicago River organization.

The headlines back then were very delightful (h/t The Wire).







What a time it was to be alive.

Five years later, when the band was back in town, Matthews did the media rounds.


Now it's six years later and he still hasn't apologized for naming an album Big Whiskey & the GrooGrux King.

That's pretty shitty.

David Matthews operates the Wayback Machine on—hop on. Got a tip? Email him:

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