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Rock star insults beloved Seattle institution, owner responds in epic way

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Tom Morello. From Getty Images.

Tom Morello. From Getty Images.

WARNING: Story has some offensive language 

SEATTLE — Turns out, being a rock star with a bit of an ego — at least it appears — doesn’t get your eggs served to you any faster in Seattle.

And Rage Against The Machine’s guitarist Tom Morello found that out the hard way.

Morello and Rage played El Corazon Friday as part of a benefit concert for 15 Now Seattle — a group supporting an increase to $15 an hour minimum wage in the area. According to, Morello went to noted greasy spoon The 5 Point Cafe after the show.But instead of a quick beer and some eggs, he found a bit of a line at the door.

What played out next is up to interpretation, but Morello appeared to leave the restaurant before going in. Morello took to Twitter to claim he was confronted by rude staff, who wanted nothing to do with him and didn’t offer him any chance at finding a table.

But The 5 Point Cafe has a different story. Morello allegedly wanted a special table in the back when the place was at capacity. He was being rude and his group showed little respect for the person working the door, the Cafe’s owner said on Facebook.

“For the record Tom Morello – The 5 Point is totally pro-worker,” the owner said on Facebook. “We try to pay more than any other small restaurant, and on top of the higher pay, we offer health insurance, paid sick days, paid time off, retirement and profit share. Sorry if you had an issue with our staff, but typically our staff is awesome, and when they are not, it’s usually a reflection of the customer. Act like a prick = get treated like a prick.

“I have to say, your attacking a small business without knowing anything about it, or addressing your problem with them directly before you go on a public rant, pretty much sucks. Just lost a ton of respect for you, and I’ve been a fan for years, both of your work in Rage and your work for workers rights since.

PS – rock stars don’t get special treatment at The 5 Point. We couldn’t give less of a shit. Sorry.”

The owner continued:

“And PSS -I’m the owner of the 5 Point and have worked to raise the minimum wage in Seattle and support the same nationally, worked to get paid sick days law in Seattle, and am supporting a City sponsored retirement plan for employees of small businesses. I hope you do the same for your employees on the road…”

Morello stood by his tweet, saying he was indeed treated poorly, and requested nothing special, not even mentioning his rock-star status. He called the person at the door, just “rude.”

Later, Morello tweeted he was willing to forgive The 5 Spot Cafe.

The Twitter exchange exploded online Tuesday, with a story becoming one of the hottest talked about on Reddit. Most appear to take the restaurant’s side.

“This hardly goes with RATM’s support for a classless society,” one user said.




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  • Nicolette LaDuke

    Wow, too bad he didn’t check his ego at the door. Actually, never heard of the prick and I am glad I haven’t. Your not any more important than anyone else Tom Morello. Remember, the people you bashed are the ones who buy your music. Dumbass.

  • sean

    First off nobody in that band is anywhere near rock star status. And I believe its first come first served so somebody should just go cry about it elsewhere

    • Bear Fox

      Yeah. That’s why they headlined Coachella, one of the biggest music festivals in the US. I also saw about 30,000 people come out to see them in Denver. They’re not rock stars at all, it’s all in their heads.

  • John Fuller

    It’s about time that someone noticed that Seattle is not what it once was. You can’t go to Dick’s. Drive In or anywhere else without 27 million white people already in line. Its pathetic! I see why Boeing is slowly pulling out. Thousands of man hours lost due to employees stuck in traffic every day because you idiots don’t know how to freaking drive! Seattle freaking sucks!

    • Hopeful Pessimist

      Actually, traffic sucks so bad here because more than 50% of the residents now living in Sea/Tac/Ev are from California, where the left lane is the fucking road hog lane, and panic when it rains. Go back to Cali.

    • Elizabeth

      Why did you feel you needed to make it a race issue? Race has NOTHING to do with this whatsoever. Seattle is a densely populated city regardless of race. If you want to live in a popular city such as Seattle then you must learn to live with the daily hustle & bustle. Ie; long lines, extended wait time, traffic jams, crowded everything. If you don’t like it then by all means feel free to explore less populated areas of Washington.

      • John Fuller

        Very simple… Remember in the movie The Matrix, when Mr. Smith told Neo that the human race is like a virus and exploits and plunders resources until resources run out? Do you know how much whiskey has been drunk since grocery stores started selling it and how many metric TONS of marijuana that has been smoked since they legalized it? Do you know many tons of Top Pot donuts that local police have eaten while on duty? Do you have any idea how many gallons of over priced, burnt coffee that has been served at Starbucks? You people are a disease! LOL!!!

  • ModestPrude (@ModestPrude)

    being as this took place in Seattle, where rudeness abounds, I am willing to believe the rock star’s version. and I have no idea who the rock star is, but this is based on my own non-rock star status and experience with Seattle restaurants. Seattlites all think that they are god, should move in with Bayrack and share the god complex!

  • Christopher Comte

    The 5 Point is owned by Dave Meinert, who has been quite vocal about his opposition to 15Now. Not saying things didn’t play out the way staff describes, but given his track record, it would also not be out of the realm of possibility that this was a deliberate snubb against a 15Now supporter.

  • Jeremy

    The band sucks, and is nowhere near “star” status. Their support for the misguided $15 minimum wage shows their ignorance and illustrates the fact they stick to doing what they do best – which is writing and performing mediocre insignificant songs.

  • Jacob Dietz

    “Rock stars don’t get special treatment at The 5 Point. We couldn’t give less of a shit. Sorry.” This pretty much sums up what I love about Seattle. It’s really too bad this ‘rock star’ didn’t check his ego before going on his little twitter rant and looking like an even bigger tool.

  • Suzan Bekiroğlu

    I was there. Tom never demanded any rock star treatment. In fact, he strikes me as the opposite of that kind of person. It was late at night and we had been looking for a restaurant for far too long when we ended up at 5 Point. There was no line that we “cut.” Nobody asked for a private room (who would even think they had one?) or demanded preferential treatment. When the doorman said the restaurant was at max capacity we were never out of line about it. We were no more upset than anyone hungry after looking awhile for food. I noticed my friends were inside by the entrance, so I went up closer to say something to them when the doorman got rude with me and said I couldn’t talk to them through the doorway. Apparently that is against the fire code, too? THAT is when the aggravation occurred. We knew IHOP was open so we went there and it was great- the employees were lovely to us! Way better service than we ever would have had at 5 Point. No one else but the doorman was anywhere near the conversation so it’s basically his word vs ours. He’s trying to say that we were very demanding and drunk, trying to cover himself, but we weren’t. So I guess it’s Tom Morello’s good reputation vs a restaurant with a reputation of rude employees and whose owner stood in the way of ‪#‎15Now‬ (who Tom played the benefit show for). Good luck with that 5 Point. Thanks for the slander. Wish there were more late night restaurants to chose from around that area…

        • madewithbacon

          In Tom’s own description of the events (posted on his Facebook page) he admits the “don’t you know who I am?” route was attempted, which is Rock Star Expecting Preferential Treatment Textbook 101. In another post he suggested that the doorman was racist. As for you, being told by the doorman that you needed to wait but walking in anyway to talk to your friends doesn’t show must respect, either. “My friends are in there” is pretty much the same thing as “I’m with the band.”

    • Brian Harju

      Beth’s Cafe and Thirteen Coins are 24hrs. Thirteen Coins is extremely close to El Corazon. The Five Spot (not to be confused with 5 Points) is open late, but not extremely late. There are a few more, just can’t think of them off the top of my head.

    • j

      I was right behind you Susan. I saw this shit go down. You were trying to squeeze your way in. Tom rocks but come on get real. Tell the truth. IHOP is truly awesomeness!

  • Margo Jodyne Dills

    Recalling when MM was barkeep there and the young lovely Drew Barrymore sidled up and before she could order, he asked for her ID. She said “don’t you know who I am?” MM answered “I sure do and I know how you are, too.”

  • Marianne

    my daughter and I have eaten there several times in the past. tried to get in there with my grandson the other night but he wasn’t of age to get in after hours but the guy at the door was super polite and whoever this rockstar is …I’ve never heard of him,butI have heard of the band

  • Gosman

    Fuck you Morrello. What were you expecting? The folks at 5-Point don’t give a shit about your status. They treat everyone equally. Get in line like the rest of us next time… Oh wait they should ban your ass from there.

  • Gosman

    Fuck that Duche. He was expecting someone to kiss his ass. That doesn’t happen at the 5-Point. every one is treated equally. @tmorello

  • Cez

    While you don’t go to a dive bar expecting the Ritz there’s also no reason to be rude. I love the Five Point but I myself boycotted it for like six years after some really (and I mean REALLY) bad service. The Five Point and me made up since (I do love you Five Point) but I can’t say I’m surprised when I hear complaints. Teaching moment; keep the edginess but self-correct the effing attitude once in a while, Five Point, there is never a reason to be rude.

  • Bear Fox

    Honestly the 5-Point is a disgusting dive bar with gross food, probably just trying to get undeserved attention. I’m taking Tom’s side on this, I think the owner is full of it and the bouncer was likely a real ass.

  • Tim B

    If you’re going to Five Point be prepared to get no service and no smiles. That’s who they are and that’s fine. When I go there I know what to expect and what not to expect. That said, it’s the only true greasy spoon in town (in my opinion anyway) and for that they have my respect.