Fans Step In After Singer Bails During Concert

But strange incident raises concern about Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 25, 2022 5:50 PM CDT
Updated May 28, 2022 5:00 PM CDT
After Singer Walks Off, Spectators Fill In
A 2012 photo of Conor Oberst.   (AP Photo/Joe Giblin, file)

A strange incident unfolded over the weekend during a concert in Houston, one that has raised concerns about the well-being of lead singer Conor Oberst of the group Bright Eyes. As the Chronicle reports, Oberst abruptly walked off the stage after just two songs, leaving the audience—and other band members—confused. The band soldiered on and even invited members of the audience to come on stage for a sort-of karaoke version of the show. (See this clip.) However, with no sign that Oberst would return, the White Oak Music Hall eventually called off the show and gave people refunds.

As Variety reports, fans may have been confused and annoyed, but the prevailing sentiment on social media seemed to be concern over Oberst's well-being. He was described by spectators as being "unsteady" and struggling to remember lyrics of the two songs he performed, per Variety. It recounts similar stories from previous shows on the tour. "Hope Conor is okay," tweeted Caitlin Cruz of the website Jezebel, who was present. "This is a disaster, and I appreciate the attempt at triage, but Jesus,” she wrote amid the attempts to save the show.

Nashville music journalist Lorie Liebig, who had seen similar behavior at a show in her city, wrote: "(C)an everyone around Conor stop acting like this whole tour is a joke and get him some help already?" Neither the band nor Oberst has commented, and the band's tour continues. In fact, Bright Eyes and Oberst performed the very next night in New Orleans—it was a great show, judging by social media comments—with no mention of the incident in Houston, per Brooklyn Vegan. (This is one of the band's big songs.)

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