Since 2009, Kings of Leon have cussed out their own fans, walked out of a show after getting shit on by pigeons, and dissed the TV program Glee to such an extent that Sir Elton John called them “assholes.” Caleb Followill admitted to Britain’s Telegraph in 2010 that he was only sober for “the first 30 minutes of every day” — adding that once he started drinking, “there’s a level of brutal honesty, if not pure meanness.” At a gig in Dallas in 2011, Caleb announced he was going offstage “to vomit” and never returned. Their tour was later canceled, with “exhaustion” given as the reason. (In a 2013 interview, again with the Telegraph, Caleb said he’d quit drinking, although he also denied rumors that he’d gone to rehab.)
And that’s the context for the story we learned from two former Tonight Show interns, who independently confirmed the details. (Both asked not to be named since they still work in the entertainment industry.)
According to the interns, things got even more sore after the sound-check. When Kings of Leon went to their dressing room, they had a spread of food and wine waiting for them, as requested in their contract. But the band refused to touch it until they had ceramic plates and actual stemware.
One intern was instructed to wash glass stemware dug up out of a prop room. The other recalls someone making a run to a nearby store to purchase plates. (For the record, this wasn’t the first time they made extra hospitality demands at a show.)
Then one of the interns made the mistake of making eye contact with Caleb Followill in the hallway. “Hey, I really liked your new album!” the starstruck intern told him.
Followill (allegedly) scowled, and then shoved the intern aside as he passed.
Later, one of the interns says, Tonight Show staff members responsible for cleaning the dressing room reported that the place had been trashed. Drink and food were spilled everywhere, and food was ground into the carpet, almost as if it had been done intentionally.
“It was unbelievable,” the intern says. “I used to like them. But now anytime I hear their songs it triggers a horrible memory.”