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NewsMusic NewsWatch The Strokes play their first-ever acoustic set for political fundraiser

The band opened the performance with a version of the US national anthem

By Rhian Daly

Julian Casablancas The Strokes live 2019
The Strokes’ Julian Casablancas CREDIT: Getty Images

The Strokes played their first-ever acoustic set yesterday (May 15) as part of a fundraiser for New York City mayoral candidate Maya Wiley.

Wiley, who is a former ACLU and NAACP legal defence fund attorney, will go to the polls on June 22 and faces competition from the likes of Andrew Yang, Dianne Morales and Raymond McGuire.

  • READ MORE: The Strokes: “Journalists kiss your ass to your face and talk shit when they’re writing the article”

The performance was held on Zoom and followed a conversation between frontman Julian Casablancas and Wiley about the mayoral race.

The Strokes opened the short set with a version of the US national anthem before playing acoustic versions of ‘Is This It’ track ‘Someday’ and ‘The Adults Are Talking’, which featured on their 2020 album ‘The New Abnormal’. They rounded things off with a slowed-down take on ‘Someday’’s chorus as the credits rolled and historical images of New York showed on screen. Watch the full performance below now.


The band last performed at a political event when they headlined a rally for Bernie Sanders in February 2020. Casablancas has also interviewed Yang, the frontrunner in the 2021 NYC mayoral race, as part of his S.O.S. — Earth Is A Mess series.

As well as the New York band, Wiley has been endorsed by the likes of actors Chris Evans and Gabrielle Union.

Meanwhile, The Strokes won their first-ever Grammy in March 2021, collecting the Best Rock Album award for ‘The New Abnormal’. In a virtual press conference at the ceremony, Casablancas gave his opinion on the state of modern rock music.

“I kind of always make fun of rock’n’roll so I think it’s kind of funny, or cool, or fitting, that we won the award,” he said. “I think that people that say things are dead, I just feel like their imagination, possibly, has died…. Honestly, there’s room for so many genres of music—not necessarily blues rock, please, no more of that.”

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