As a card-carrying member of the Matchbox Twenty fan club (note: contrary to popular belief, the cards do NOT read, “I must be lonely”), it is my obligation to hate all things Third Eye Blind, after lead singer Stephan Jenkins tiffed with Rob Thomas in the late 1990s over Thomas’s moderate weight gain. Yes, this happened. So I greatly enjoyed singer/songwriter John Vanderslice’s story for the AV Club’s “Hate Song” series about his interaction with Jenkins. The context: Third Eye Blind booked Vanderslice’s studio, Tiny Telephone, in 2002 to record a new album.
So I went to the studio, and the band showed up, the manager showed up, and Carmer showed up. And Stephan Jenkins was not there. So we were talking. Everyone was super mellow, actually. They were very respectful. They were asking normal questions. “If we do take the studio, where can we plug in a fax machine?” Just normal stuff. So we waited, like, 15, 20, 30 minutes. We heard a motorcycle pull up, and I was, like, “Okay, that’s got to be this dude who’s clearly late and clearly doesn’t care but whatever.” I wanted to ink the deal. So Stephan Jenkins walks in wearing motorcycle leather, and he’s holding his helmet. He walks in, and I’m sitting there. We’re all in the live room. And he doesn’t say a word of, like, a normal greeting. It’s not normal. You would normally say, “Hey, how is everything going?”
So he comes in, and he takes a chair. I will never forget this. This was one of the golden moments of Tiny Telephone recording: He takes a folding chair and flips it around backward and then puts it uncomfortably close to me, considering we’re in a large room, and sits face-to-face with me, sitting backward in a chair. And he says, “Okay, what are we going to do about this rate? We’ve got to get this rate down.” (Via)
I didn’t realize people do that in real life. Is Stephan Jenkins AC Slater? I think so.
He was doing like 101 intimidating negotiating tactics or whatever that he Googled the night before. I don’t know what he was doing. And so I said, “Honestly, we’re sold out every day, and I really think there’s a disincentive to me to book six weeks for you because I’m going to push out my normal clients,” etc. I also said, “Hey, we’re way under market,” gave him all these reasons. He didn’t respond to anything I said. He stood up with his helmet, and he started pacing the live room. All the other crew, they know just to be quiet because this is his mode of whatever douchebaggery. I don’t know. He paces the studio, and then he just blurts out, “Okay, let’s do it.” Then he walks out of the door, fires up his motorcycle, and leaves.
And Vanderslice never saw him again. Some say Stephan Jenkins disappeared, others say he never existed in the first place, except for in the smiles of small children. Me? Well, what I think is DO DO DO DO DO DO DO DOO.