Update, July 22, 10:13am: After announcing plans to rebrand following allegations of abuse, Burger Records shut down completely, Pitchfork reports. The label plans to remove all of its releases from streaming services, though co-founder Sean Bohrman said artists are free to re-upload their music themselves.
This week, numerous women came forward with accusations of sexual assault and misconduct against several bands affiliated with Southern California rock label Burger Records. And today, the organizers of its namesake Oakland festival, Burger Boogaloo, announced they’re severing ties with the label and changing the festival name.
Claims of abuse surfaced on the Instagram account @Lured_By_Burger_Records, which accused numerous musicians in the label’s orbit of rape, sexual harassment, emotional and physical abuse and sexual coercion of teenage girls. While some of the accusers are anonymous, others are notable musicians in the garage, punk and indie rock scenes.
Lydia Night, singer of The Regrettes, accused SWMRS drummer Joey Armstrong (son of Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong) of pressuring her into a secretive, sexually coercive relationship when he was 22 and she was 16. (Armstrong has since published an apology to her on the band’s Instagram.) Cherry Glazerr singer Clementine Creevy came forward with accusations of statutory rape against The Buttertones’ Sean Redman, who she said pressured her into a sexual relationship when she was 14 and gave her two sexually transmitted infections. (On Instagram, The Buttertones posted that Redman is out of the band before deleting their account.)
The @Lured_By_Burger_Records account also features screen shots of sexual misconduct accusations, many of them anonymous, against musicians from the bands Cosmonauts, The Growlers, The Black Lips, Magic Jake, Audacity and others. The accusers’ testimonies allege a pattern of older, male musicians pressuring mostly underage fans for sexual favors.