Two days ago, Daniel Rodriguez, merch guy for Anaheim, CA based rock group New Years Day, took to his Tumblr blog to let the world know about his experience of being on the road with NYD for a total of four months as they played alongside Blood On The Dance Floor.
For those who don’t know, BOTDF has a bit of a reputation for both their extremely profane lyrics and antics (on and off stage). While we here at UTG are all about being edgy and having fun, there’s definitely a line to be crossed at some point. While we’ll let the post speak for itself, we’ll preface it by saying that it includes stories involving the assault of NYD’s frontwoman, Ashley Costello, and blatant harassment towards The Bunny The Bear’s merchwoman that culminated in her quitting out mid-tour, among many other things.
For those who aren’t sure who I am , my name is Daniel. I have been touring with New Years Day as their merch guy for the past year. I’ve been on tour with BOTDF just as long as they have. That’s 3 whole tours. A total of almost 4 whole months, seeing these people almost every day.
I’m going to start of by saying a few things.
1.) I AM NOT SPEAKING ON BEHALF OF “NEW YEARS DAY” OR ANY OF THEIR MEMBERS. I AM NOT A ‘MEMBER’ of New Years Day. To be honest, NYD does not even know that I am writing this… But legally, I am not a part of New Years Day, however I am witness to everything that has gone on in the past year. I do not want anyone to hate or bash THEM for what I’m going to say. Do not attack them for MY words and thoughts. If you are going to send poorly written hate comments, send them to me, not them…
Follow the jump for the rest of the text from the blog post.
2.) New Years Day can’t really say much about this whole ordeal. That wouldn’t be very professional of them, would it?
…BUT I CAN!
3.) If NYD could’ve, they would’ve told you everything.
4.) If you’re saying this is a ploy to sell more records, there are so many better ways to sell records..
5.) If you think I am JEALOUS, well… that’s just silly. Sorry, but I don’t see anything to be jealous of.
6.) Despite what you may think, New Years Day has been around longer than BOTDF has. (I’m not saying that to bash). All I’m saying is, BOTDF did not make NYD who they are, or build them to where they are now. Just because you discovered NYD through a BOTDF show does not mean NYD owes their life to them. To be honest, I first heard of NYD from seeing their music video on MTV years ago… So despite what you may think, they’ve had a following and fans for years.
7.) If you think NYD is upset at the fact that they were kicked off the tour, you’re wrong. I’m more upset that what we stood up against on the tour that got us kicked off in the first place still continued to go on.
8.) Ashley and the rest of NYD are the most sincere, real, humble people. If they wanted attention, this would not be the way to get it, and they know that. They are not liars. This band is 100% real. From the stage, to the merch table, to their normal lives outside of the music industry, they are the same people that you meet at their show. Once again, they stated their reason for no longer being on the tour, yet people are still not believing it. (why? I don’t know..)
9.) If you’re NOT going to read this top to bottom, word by word, then you can leave now, and don’t you dare even think about leaving a comment or opening your mouth about the situation.
You all want the truth and details. So here they are.
This is going to be quite a lengthy blog. Just a warning…
FLASHBACK to the ALL THE RAGE TOUR- 2011—-
We had been hearing a lot about BOTDF before the tour started. Lots of stories, and lots of people on both sides of the story. First day of the tour was hectic for me. It was my first time ever doing merch. So I didn’t really get to meet anyone. BOTDF’s set started, and immediately after the first few songs, Dahvie started saying some pretty disgusting stuff to this crowd of underage children… I was in shock. But of course, it’s all just a stage show. So I didn’t think anything of it. However I was still feeling uncomfortable with what was being said. I’m pretty fucking vulgar and disgusting at times, and some of the things he said rubbed me the wrong way. That night we all got into the van to head to the next show, and I distinctly remember Ashley’s words: “There is no way what people are saying about them can be true. Seriously, they could not have been any sweeter or nice.”
Next show at Chain Reaction, I was finally able to introduce myself to Jayy and Dahvie. Who were both the sweetest guys when I met them. I was shocked. I’m not one to judge a book by the cover, but of course you can see why I was a little worried. Dahvie even gave a good friend of mine a ticket into the show because it was sold out and she had no way in. I thought that was a really kind-hearted gesture. “There’s no way this guy can be the person we’ve been hearing about,” was my thought. Show went on, still disgusting things were being said. I brushed it off. It was what they do. This is their show. Who am I to judge what they’re saying and doing? It’s all for show.
Next day in Hollywood, after the show, I was loading the merch into the trailer in front of the venue. There were quite a few kids out front waiting in line to meet Dahvie since the venue wouldn’t let people stay inside that long. And I thought it was really awesome that Dahvie actually takes the time to meet every single person. I had seen him do it the previous shows. While I was loading the merch in, I heard laughing and what kind of sounded like scuffling behind me. I heard Ashley’s ‘playful’ scream and I heard Dahvie’s voice. When I turned around I saw Ashley on the ground, with Sharpie marks on her face, and Dahvie getting off of her, he then decided to grab a package of our CD’s and was about to throw them. I can’t remember if he did or not, but regardless I was a little confused about what was happening. I saw the playful look on his face, but I knew Ashley well enough to know that she’s not a rough-housing type of person, especially if it’s from someone she doesn’t know very well. I looked over at Ashley getting up off the floor, and she had the look of “Did that really just happen?” on her face, while still smiling and laughing, but trying to play it cool. I can tell when someone is uncomfortable. She didn’t look very happy.
A few shows later, the tour hit Seattle, Washington. The show ended, and as I was loading up the trailer, a man came up to me and looked very distraught. He had asked me if I had seen his little sister. This was about 2 hours after the show had ended, and there were very few people around. I didn’t know what she looked like or who she was, but he said she was hanging out with BOTDF. I informed him I wasn’t in their crew, but being a good guy, I decided to tell the guy I’ll go look for her and asked a few of the remaining kids if they had seen her around. The man told me he didn’t know what to do and that he was going to call the police because she had gone missing at this point for over an hour. I told him sorry, and that I didn’t find her anywhere. Eventually, he walked off very upset not knowing what to do and continued to walk around the venue looking. I was very worried as well. Someone from their crew blurted out to me “yeah she’s on the bus fucking Dahvie.” I felt very uncomfortable in that situation, but eventually brother and sister were re-united.
A few shows later in Spokane, Washington, at the ‘A CLUB’, the show had ended, and all the bands were standing in the main-room, clearing the gear out of the building, and taking down merch. All of a sudden, I see Ashley in tears, soaking wet, running to the bathroom. Everyone looked over and saw her clearly upset. Karl from Angelspit said “Guys go get your girl she’s in tears!” I was pretty confused because Ashley is a tough fucking chick. Seriously. Don’t fuck with her…
So whatever happened must have been pretty bad. Nikki ran over to see what was wrong as I continued to tear down merch. Mind you, it was COLD outside… Well, turns out what happened was Dahvie decided to completely drench Ashley with a Super Soaker. In the face. At a very close range. In front of many people. At this point I was angry and upset. We all were. For those who don’t know NYD and their crew very well, we’re the closest family I’ve ever known. When we’re together, we’re the closest bunch of people you will ever know. Ask ANYONE we’ve toured with. When one of us is clearly upset, all of us are upset. Eventually Ash calmed down, and from what I remember that night, decided to have a talk with Dahvie and let him know that she felt the line was crossed. Ashley is always the one who will take the high road and TALK to someone about the problems she has with them. She is also very forgiving and accepting. From what I remember talking to Ashley that night after she spoke with Dahvie, I think she said he was upset with her because she almost “ripped one of his extensions out,” while they were rough-housing after the Hollywood show, and that was his form of retaliation. So, Ashley, being the good person she is, again put the bullshit aside, and still went on to be positive and try to be a good friend to him.
Days later, in Colorado, the merch area was right in front of the venue, in front of where the bus was parked. I noticed about 4 separate times I saw Dahvie walk on to his bus with a girl around his arm. About 10 minutes later, the girls would walk off alone. I thought that was very odd. I decided to ignore what I saw, and not say anything again. Eventually though, this became something I saw quite often. This became a regular thing and everyone knew and saw it happening.
Fast forward to Halloween night, in Milwaukee. We ended up at this AWESOME haunted venue that we were all excited to be in. The backstage area was amazing. It had 3 separate rooms, and curtains to get ready behind. Later on in the night, Ashley came over to the merch, very quietly. She was too quiet. She sat down next to me with a very worried expression on her face. I asked if she was okay. And she kept looking forward and shook her head, “no”. I asked what happened and she seemed very hesitant to tell me, but eventually she said “Dahvie choked me.” I asked if she was alright, and she said yes, but she was very shaken up. She told me that she was getting ready behind the curtain in the dressing room while Nikki & Jake were on the other side of it. Dahvie rushed into the room and jumped behind the curtain before Jake & Nikki realized what was happening. Eventually they looked back and saw the curtain moving and heard some scuffling, and saw Dahvie running out from behind the curtain to the stage. Before they could figure out what was going on, they found Ashley behind the curtain on the ground with her hands around her neck. Ashley couldn’t breathe. She couldn’t even make a sound to let them know what was going on while it was happening. At this point we were all very on edge with him. But YET AGAIN, we let all of this slide and didn’t speak of it to their crew or anyone.. He said it was a “halloween prank”. Ashley continued to keep her mouth closed for the sake of the tour, and for being thankful that she was able to still be on tour playing for her fans that she loves so much. We did contemplate leaving, but we couldn’t do that. There was still so much of the tour left, we couldn’t just abandon the tour and leave the fans of NYD out to hang like that.
Fast forward about a week to the show in Virgina Beach. At this point of the tour, Ashley had been on stage singing “Bewitched” with BOTDF almost every night since the beginning. And at this point, we would not let her sing on stage with him unless someone from the band was standing side-stage, just in case anything happened. Ashley did her thing, and got on stage to sing Bewitched. After the song ended, Dahvie decided to flip her off, and call her a bitch, out of nowhere. He then said to her as she was walking off, “If you want to make it in Hollywood, you gotta suck this dick you slut!” Ashley had told him many times to respect her. SO many times. But it seems that whenever she did, he would come back at her 10x worse. Ashley was of course upset again, as anyone would be if they clearly stated that they do not want to be talked to or treated like that anymore. Again, we decided to let it go. No one said anything to anyone, for the sake of the tour…
The next night in Evansville, Ashley let us know that she was not going to be singing Bewitched with them that night. We all understood why and of course supported her. But Ashley, yet again being a good person and putting EVERYTHING aside, decided last minute to do it. She went on stage, did her part, and before she could even finish it, he inappropriately put his arms on her neck again, in front of the crowd. She dropped the mic and walked off the stage, not saying a word.
The tour went on, and eventually ended a few days later in Tuscon. Ashley and the girls from Angelspit were standing in the back of the venue during one of BOTDF’s last songs. In between the songs, Dahvie pointed to the back of the crowd and told them to give it up for the beautiful ladies of New Years Day and Angelspit (the other band that we were on the tour with). He then said “they are so hot! I would fuck the shit out of all 3 of them!” Clearly, no matter how many times Ashley had told him to respect her, he never did. It was literally in one ear and out the other. That was the last night of the tour. That night, we said our goodbyes to everyone, and drove 3 days straight directly to the next tour we had lined up that started a few days later. Eventually that tour ended and we were home. At this point we had been out on tour for 2.5 months, and we had almost died in the snow about 30 times… Fun. All we were focused on when we got home was how happy we were to be back from such a long 2.5 months. Everything eventually blew over.
Months went by, and we all were talking about how much we missed the crew of BOTDF and Jayy. Eventually NYD heard news that they were added to the Fight To Unite Tour. We were all so excited to see the friends we had made and make some new friends.
As most of you know, Ashley had a really horrible accident the third day of the tour. She ended up dislocating her knee 3 songs into the set. She went against doctor’s orders and decided to hop on the tour the next day, despite what she was told to do, and despite all the pain. Everyone commended her for doing this. Everyone on the tour had her back 100%.
To be quite honest, this tour was such a blur for all of us. The drives were long, and there were 8 bands on the tour. It was very busy. So busy that I rarely saw ‘him’. However, I still noticed the flood of girls that would enter and exit his bus at the end of the night. And it seemed that the things he would say on stage became far more vulgar, violent, and disgusting than ever before. But like I told myself before, this is their show.
It was on this tour that I witnessed some really harsh disrespect against one of my dear friends and ex-merch girl for BOTDF, Sally. I love Sally to death, and between the All The Rage Tour, and The Fight To Unite Tour, we were able to become pretty close when your job is to sell merch next to eachother 8 hours a night. From the second I met Sally, I knew she was a strong and outspoken person. Nothing can hurt her mood or her feelings. She was a fucking bad-ass, to say the least.
As all of you know, Sally ended up together with the singer of The Bunny The Bear, who were also on the tour. Long story short, I saw Sally be shunned by Dahvie, to the point of tears. Quite a few times, actually. They would be feet apart and he would completely ignore her and say mean things about her. It was hard to see someone so tough feel so helpless. They even went as far to change the lyrics from one of their songs to say “We’re going to kill The Bunny’s family”, and they sang it with such hatred, night after night. As you all may know, eventually Sally had enough of it all and quit. If that’s not bullying, then I don’t know what is. It doesn’t matter if she chose someone over another, no one deserves to be bullied to the point where they are uncomfortable to do their job and be forced to quit. That’s not family.
At a show in Texas, Jake was on the side of the stage with a friend of ours during BOTDF’s set. It turns out that Dahvie had tried to make his moves on this girl before, and when she turned him down, he got angry and hostile. Dahvie decided to go up to them and get the crowd to chant “BAND SLUT” at her. A little harsh, don’t you think? Dahvie then asked her in front of a thousand people, “How does my cum taste, slut?” and then held the mic to her face. She replied with, “…..gross…”. Dahvie then decided to smack her on the head as hard as he could with the microphone. What a nice guy…
The Scene Is Dead Tour rolls around. This tour came at a short notice. To be quite honest, I was not ready for it. No one was, actually. We had 7 weeks to prepare for over a month-long tour.
Before the tour started, BOTDF released a song featuring Ashley from New Years Day. Dahvie and Ashley both decided that it would be great for Ashley to sing HELL ON HEELS live with them at every show. Ashley agreed, and I must say she did a damn good job every night. However, there were things I saw that made me uncomfortable. And eventually I found out that they made Ashley uncomfortable as well.
When Ashley sang Hell On Heels with Dahvie, of course they’re both going to want to put on a good show and interact with each other. Remember on the All The Rage tour, when Ashley told Dahvie NUMEROUS times that she did not like being touched by him provocatively while they sang together? Well, surprise. It never went through to his head. Eventually it got to the point where Dahvie was kind of rough with her while they were performing. Ashley was still recovering from her knee injury from the Fight To Unite Tour. It still hurt her, and for those of you that came to the show, if you spent time talking to her or hanging out with her, you’d know that she wasn’t fully healed yet. She still wore a leg brace, however it was much smaller and she was able to do a lot more on stage than she was able to do on the FTU tour. During a few shows, Dahvie aggressively pulled Ashley toward him while they were singing, and you can tell that she was in pain when he did so. But alas, she continued to sing with him every night, as uncomfortable as it got for her.
One night when they were performing the song, Dahvie decided to put his head in between her legs and kiss her hips. It seemed that no matter how many times Ashley told him to respect her, he never did, and it seemed that every time she told him, it would get worse. Eventually Ashley had enough of it and stopped singing Hell On Heels.
Let’s get to the real reason I’m here. To tell you why New Years Day was no longer on the second half of the tour. Before I begin, let me start by saying that this is not fabricated in any way, shape, or form.
You are all asking for details, and now you’re going to get them.
I could let this all pass and go on with life, but I’m not going to sit back and watch my best friends, the most humble, loving, and honest people in the world, be accused of slander. I’m not going to sit back and watch more people be accused of bullshitting when they’re not. Clearly something is very wrong here and you know it. Too many people have come forward and no one has taken the time to hear them out. Instead, they get bullied into disappearing off the face of the earth. If you are a die hard fan of BOTDF and afraid to know the truth, then I would exit now…..
At the show in Columbus, Ohio, Ashley tried to stop a young girl from meeting up with Dahvie after the show. No, we DO NOT know what they were meeting up about, but knowing his reputation, of course we have the right to intervene if we feel we needed to. Things go on in tour buses that anyone under 18 shouldn’t be around regardless. I know I wouldn’t let my child on a band’s tour bus.
Earlier in the night, that same girl also asked Ashley why she wasn’t singing Hell On Heels. Ashley honestly replied, “I do not feel comfortable around him.”
The next morning, Ash wakes up to 5 missed calls and a very urgent text message saying “We need to have a serious talk on my bus tomorrow.” Clearly, this girl more than likely got what she wanted. And while she was with Dahvie, she also decided to tell him what Ash said. (or her friends did. Can’t say for sure) Either way, word got back to him.
Here she was trying to do the right thing and prevent something like this from happening anymore. Something that ANYONE with morals would do.
We left that morning to the show in Chicago, and while on the way, Ash was worried sick. She was afraid that she may have done the wrong thing. For her to doubt that she did something wrong in that situation was really a wake up call to me. It woke me up to how scared people are of this man… And how scared people are to come forward about the things he’s done. We all stood by what she did and reminded her that what she did was right in every way, and that we were proud of her for not being afraid to stand up to him. Ash mustered up some courage and decided to speak with Dahvie on the phone. The call was brief. And these were his exact words:
“When you get here come straight to my bus. I need to talk to you. And don’t set your shit up, because I might be kicking you off the tour.”
He hung up, and we all stared at each other in disbelief.
We showed up to the venue, and said fuck it. We started loading in the gear and the merch while Ash went to speak with Dahvie.
Ash walked to the bus with the rest of the band. We all agreed she would NOT be going in there alone. But he insisted. Everyone on the TOUR disagreed. Eventually, he allowed Jake to go in with her. No one else.
To Ash’s dismay, he admitted that he heard that Ashley was uncomfortable singing on stage with him.
HOLD ON A SECOND..
Let me say something here… For the past year, Ashley has told him to his face, that she doesn’t feel comfortable when he acts a certain way with her on stage or in person…..
So why all of a sudden is he having this huge meeting with her, threatening to kick NYD off the tour… all this over her being UNCOMFORTABLE?! It’s very obvious that he is feeling guilty and scared about something else that she may know. Maybe that ‘something’ was being with girls that he knows he should not be with… Throughout that entire conversation with her, it’s funny how that was not brought up ONCE. Eventually their conversation ended and the show went on. And we thought the whole ordeal was over, even after him threatening her and Jake to “throw down.” Really?? What a man..
The next day was a show in Cleveland. New Years Day played to one of the biggest crowds of the whole tour, and we got to meet some awesome people. Definitely the most memorable night of the tour, but for another reason as well. BOTDF’s tour manager wanted to speak with Ashley and the rest of the band after the show. So I sat in the driver’s seat and waited. I knew it must have been serious because they were taking awhile. After an hour of waiting, Ashley opens the door and says “We’re going home. We’re kicked off the tour.” We left immediately, not even able to say goodbye to our friends. It was so abrupt. We were all in shock. None of us knew what to say or do, so we just drove and drove til we got home. (and then we hit a deer. Are you happy that this NYD KILLED A DEER rumor is laid to rest? However we didn’t put a “Get Well Soon” balloon on it, idiots)
Let me remind you guys of something here. Throughout this entire year of touring with BOTDF, everyone who toured with them knows what that man does. Everyone knows how/who he is. But everyone is too scared of him to do a thing about it. I’ve had countless fans come up to me and tell me how rude he was and how creepy he was with them. I’ve seen many girls who were ‘questionably’ (but positively) not of age with him and eventually on the bus with him. I’ve seen him treat his entire crew and band like animals. I’ve seen him attack, disrespect, and inappropriately touch one of my best friends, after she had told him numerous times to stop.. to the point where she could no longer hold it in anymore. And to be honest, this isn’t even HALF of what was said or done by him. But, these are things I distinctly remember, so I’m not going to go post a story I don’t remember details about, and get them wrong. Because I’m an honest person.
A couple of months ago, Ashley posted a blog on her Tumblr explaining how she felt. She had never felt physically attacked until touring with him. She’s never felt so uncomfortable in her life until touring with him. She’s never been so conflicted to ignoring or confronting a situation so strongly, until touring with him…
Since she posted that blog, hundreds of people have come forward with their stories and experiences.
Some of these girls have tried to come forward so many times before but eventually just get bullied and threatened into hiding.
There are DOZENS of messages and emails from girls who have been mistreated by him.
You all know it. I don’t give a flying FUCK anymore about what you think or refuse to believe. But I will not sit back and watch the most honest, loyal, people/musicians be accused of lies and slander anymore. Enough is enough.
I don’t care if you met him and he was sweet to you. I don’t care if he writes songs about love and respect and anti-bullying. I don’t care if you talked to him on Twitter once. That does not mean you know him personally and that does not in any way reflect what he does behind all of the bull shit. I heard John Wayne Gacy was a sweetheart too, ya know..
To all of you who are brainless enough not to see who this man really is, you need to wake up and realize that too many people are coming forward about this for it to be fake and made up.
Snap.the.fuck.out of it.
These are not lies or rumors. He is a bully.
For all of you that are going to defend him over this, you’re the classic victim of the “Get in my van, I have candy” trap. Be smarter than that. I really hope I put things into perspective for you. And if I didn’t, then oh well. But you need to stop making up lies about people who are standing up for themselves, all because you are too selfish to let someone you idolize take the fall for the bad reputation that they made for themselves.
HATERZ MAKE US FAMOUZ isn’t going to save you anymore.
Are you happy now? You got all the details you wanted. You got what you were asking for. And the worst part about it is there are STILL going to be people defending his actions regardless and saying I made all this up for money and attention. This isn’t People magazine. I don’t get paid for a blog post, idiot. Don’t tell me that I should’ve kept this to myself. I’m not going to sugar coat everything for you just because you’re ignorant and can’t handle the truth. If you say you’re mature enough to listen to a song about jizzing all over someone’s face, then you sure as hell can be mature enough to handle what I’ve said.
I’m not telling you to stop listening to his music. I’m not telling you to choose a side. I’m not telling you to choose an idol. I’m not telling you to choose a fanbase… NYD can care less about what you listen to. They would never shun anyone away for listening to a band they don’t get along with. If what he does and what he says make you happy, then good. I’m glad you have something that has that effect on you. Who am I to say to stop listening to music that makes you happy? But that’s not what this blog is about. This blog is about defending people I consider family, because I’m tired of all the lies and hypocrisy that I see going around daily on these social media sites. Because I DO care what people are saying about my friends.
All I’m saying is that you be open minded enough to at least ACCEPT another side of the story.
For the people who are going to say “GET OVER IT ALREADY”
Well… I’m not going to get over it until you do. There isn’t a single day that goes by where I don’t see a stupid comment insulting NYD or Ashley. There isn’t a single day where I don’t see a stupid rumor going around. None of us can say a word to defend ourselves without anyone saying how “dramatic” or “hypocritical” we are.
Kind of ironic, isn’t it…
Once I stop seeing that, THEN I will get over it.
Until then, stop being a fucktard and making up lies and rumors.
I wish I could use the phrase “HATERS MAKE ME FAMOUS” to justify all of my shitty and disgusting actions.
EDIT: To those asking why we stayed on tour- Don’t be dumb. Being in a band is a business. It’s a job. It’s a 24/7 job. You know that. To be quite honest, I love the rest of the band and crew. I think it’s safe to say that we all did. We all love touring. Most of all, I think NYD loved playing for an audience and fanbase that is so accepting of music. However, sometimes you just have to put aside the bullshit from one “co-worker” to continue your work, when quitting isn’t an option.