Josh Homme Kicks Photographer, Cuts Self At ‘Almost Acoustic’ Show In LA

Queens Of The Stone Age frontman Josh Homme allegedly kicked a concert photographer in the face at KROQ radio’s Almost Acoustic Christmas show at the Forum in Inglewood, Calif., Dec. 9, resulting in her hospitalization and an apology from the rocker the next day.

Josh Homme
Amy Harris/Invision/AP
– Josh Homme
Almost Acoustic Christmas, The Forum, Dec. 9, 2017

Photographer Chelsea Lauren checked in to Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles with what she described on Facebook as “a wicked headache” after the incident, which was caught on video published by VarietyLauren works for Shutterstock, which has a licensing agreement with the magazine’s parent, Penske Media.

The video shows Homme apparently kicking at Lauren’s camera, which was pushed into her face. She told Variety that “it was obviously very intentional” and that he was smiling at her just before launching the kick. Other witnesses described bizarre behavior from Homme, including kicking at stage equipment and possibly cutting himself with a knife onstage.

Homme later described the kick as “an accident.”  He released a statement posted the next afternoon on the band’s social media accounts.

“Last night, while in a state of being lost in performance, I kicked over various lighting and equipment on our stage,” the statement says. “Today it was brought to my attention that this included a camera held by photographer Chelsea Lauren. I did not mean for that to happen and I am very sorry.

“I would never intentionally cause harm to anyone working at or attending one of our shows and I hope Chelsea will accept my sincere apology.”

According to Variety, a hospital social worker and others who viewed the video urged her to press charges and Lauren was expected to file a police report Sunday (Dec. 10).

She described the incident to Variety in detail.

“I saw him coming over and I was shooting away,” she told the Hollywood trade magazine. “The next thing I know his foot connects with my camera and my camera connects with my face, really hard. He looked straight at me, swung his leg back pretty hard and full-blown kicked me in the face. He continued performing.”

She went to the press room briefly and returned to finish shooting Thirty Seconds To Mars and Muse before going to the hospital emergency room for treatment.

“I feel like if I don’t do anything, he gets to kick people in the face and not get in trouble because he’s a musician,” Lauren told Variety. “That’s not right.”

She also reported that minutes after the incident, Homme cut his own forehead with what appeared to be a knife and dripped blood for the remainder of QOTSA’s set. He reportedly also called the audience “retards” before exclaiming “Fuck Muse!”, a reference to the Almost Acoustic Christmas headliner for the night.

Variety reports that Homme also encouraged the audience to boo him and take off their pants, saying “I want to give you all a night you’ll never remember.”  

Pollstar  has reached out to QOTSA reps, who were not immediately available for comment.

The band sold out The Anthem’s 6,000 seats in Washington, D.C., Oct. 20 and rang up 10,701 tickets sold at Madison Square Garden Arena in New York City four days later

Queens of the Stone Age last toured in 2013-14, clocking in 56 shows averaging 6,175 tickets per show and $375,437 grossing just shy of $20 million on the outing.