N.J. Firefighters In Trouble For Lit Party
Too much of a good time spent with California modern rock act Lit has gotten a volunteer New Jersey firefighting squad in hot water.Too much of a good time spent with California modern rock act Lit has gotten a volunteer New Jersey firefighting squad in hot water. Earlier this week an investigation was launched into the actions of several members of Iselin, N.J.'s District 11 fire company after the band posted photos and tales of its visit in the "All Access" section of its official Web site.
According to the Home News Tribune, on May 3 the members of Lit were enjoying a day off at a T.G.I. Friday's restaurant when they ran into some firefighters winding down after a softball game. After buying the band drinks, the group was allegedly invited back to the firehouse to continue the revelry. "Next thing you know, everyone's back at Station 11, the Iselin firehouse with all the firemen and their friends from the bar," the site said. "There was this cool bar in the basement with foosball and lots of beer, food, and fun."
The pictures, which have now been removed from the site, included bandmembers touring the firehouse, trying on gear, an unidentified woman baring her breasts, and a person presumably passed out in a hotel hallway. Officials are looking into whether or not one of the company's vehicles, a Chevy Suburban, was improperly used to ferry the band around the area, and exactly what happened during the unsanctioned firehouse party.
The investigation could lead to file disciplinary actions against several volunteers, Joseph Greco, attorney for the Iselin Board of Fire Commissioners told the paper. "What I've seen on the Web site is embarrassing to the fire company," he said.
The band is rankled over reports suggesting it instigated the brouhaha. "Everything that Lit took part in was by invitation from members of the Iselin Volunteer Fire Department, therefore it appears the firefighters got themselves in trouble," Lit's members -- frontman A. Jay Popoff, guitarist Jeremy Popoff, bassist Kevin Baldes, and drummer Allen Shellenberger-- said in a collective statement. "The band was invited to the firehouse and invited to take a tour."
"Lit has the utmost respect for the firefighting profession and were honored to meet some of the members of the department and accept their invitation to the firehouse," the statement continued. "The band had no way of knowing that the offer being extended to them was unauthorized in any way."
The band's tour in support of its latest RCA album, "Atomic," continued on the night following the incident at the Birch Hill, an Old Bridge, N.J., venue. That leg of the tour has since ended, but the band will take to the road again with a May 17 appearance in Jackson, Miss.
As it has done since it began its 2002 tour, the band promises to continue documenting each stop with "photos, video, tour diaries, band interviews... nudity, golfing with Allen, mullets across America, drunken fiascos, celebrity look-alikes on the road, bus driver interviews, and more" on its Web site.
Here are Lit's upcoming tour dates:
May 17: Jackson, Miss. (Jubilee Jam)
May 18: Pensacola, Fla. (Spring Break)
May 19: Atlanta (Earthlink Live)
May 21: Raleigh, N.C. (Lincoln Theatre)
May 22: Winston-Salem, N.C. (Ziggy's)
May 24: Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. (the Culture Room)
May 25: Tampa, Fla. (Jannus Landing)
May 26: Orlando, Fla. (House of Blues; co-headline w/Live)
May 27: Ft. Myers, Fla. (Neptunes)
May 29: Lafayette, La. (Grant Street Music Hall)
May 30: New Orleans (House of Blues)
May 31: Houston (Engine Room)
June 1: Dallas (KDGE's Edgefest)
June 2: San Antonio, Texas (Sunset Station)
June 4: Denver (Ogden Theatre)
June 5: Salt Lake City (X-scape)
June 6: Boise, Idaho (Big Easy)
June 9: Seattle (Graceland)
June 12: Stockton, Calif. (San Joaquin County Fair)