The Stone Roses Frontman Ian Brown Desecrates British Flag at Mexican Concert

Jon Wiederhorn
Stop The Presses! (NEW)

When you’re in your own country, desecrating the flag is a serious act of rebellion – one that can incite a riot or at least a bout of fisticuffs. But the impact isn’t quite the same when an artist makes such a gesture in another country.

When The Stone Roses frontman Ian Brown simulated wiping his rear end with the British flag during an April 9 show in Mexico City, no one seemed terribly upset. They were more intent on reveling in the nostalgia of the show, which opened with "I Wanna Be Adored" and included the hits "Fools Gold," "Waterfall" and "Love Spreads." The set ended with "She Bangs the Drums" and "I Am the Resurrection."

According to, the band’s Mexican debut was originally scheduled in a 20,000 seat stadium, but had to be downgraded to a venue that holds a capacity of 7,500.

The event was a warm-up gig for Friday’s headlining show at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. The Stone Roses will play a second Coachella show on April 19 before launching a European tour.

The band formed in Manchester, England in 1983 and became leaders of the so-called Madchester scene (which also featured Happy Mondays and Inspiral Carpets) in 1989 when it released its widely acclaimed self-titled album. Fans waited five years for The Stone Roses  to release their sophomore album Second Coming, and after various lineup shifts the band broke up in 1996. By that time the more popular Britpop movement, which included Blur and Oasis was sweeping the globe.

After The Stone Roses split, Brown launched a solo career and released six Albums, the last of which was 2009’s My Way. Guitarist John Squire formed The Seahorses in 1996. The band released Do it Yourself the next year, but broke up in 1999 because of musical differences. Squire then released two solo albums, 2002’s Time Changes Everything and 2004’s Marshall’s House before dedicating himself to a career of painting.

A documentary film about the bands reunion, Made of Stone, shot by Shane Meadows, will premiere in Manchester on May 30. All of the band members are expected to attend.