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Jello Biafra Bags DKs Reunion

New anniversary, same old anger for veteran punks

The Dead Kennedys celebrated twenty-five years as a band this week
with more of the mud-slinging that has typified relations between
the split factions of the group. Singer Jello Biafra responded to
an invite from guitarist East Bay Ray, drummer D.H. Peligro and
bassist Klaus Flouride to play a reunion show at Los Angeles’ Key
Club on Tuesday with a blistering refusal.

“What’s the matter, not enough Hot Topic bozo teens flocking to
stuff cash in their bikinis?” Biafra wrote on his label Alternative
Tentacles’ Web site. “Are they having that much trouble selling
tickets to a bar that holds less than 600 people? . . . I feel
sorry for anyone duped into paying top dollar for a ticket because
they heard, ‘I might be there.’ But I hardly think I’m ‘letting
fans down’ by refusing to be part of a nostalgia scam.”

“Not true,” says East Bay Ray. “When we play, the audience is
about sixty percent people who have never seen us. And I believe
the band’s message of questioning authority and thinking for
yourself is more important now than it’s ever been before, given
the current state of the world.”

The Dead Kennedys have been snarled in legal disputes over
royalties since 1998. In June of this year, the California Court of
Appeals upheld a ruling that Biafra owes his ex-band mates more
than $200,000 in compensatory and punitive damages. Biafra’s
attempts to gain sole custody over the Kennedy’s music was also
denied.

The Biafra-less Dead Kennedys, now featuring Jeff Penalty on
vocals, will play their next show September 6th at the Hezarfen
Airport in Istanbul, Turkey.

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