The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

Hammerfest Racist Rock Festival Planned for Boise on Saturday

By Bill Morlin on October 1, 2012 - 5:44 pm, Posted in Hate Groups, Racist Music, White Supremacist

The annual neo-Nazi skinhead rock concert known as Hammerfest will be held this Saturday in or near Boise, Idaho, where authorities say they are worried about the potential for violence at or after the event.

Hammerskin Nation, one of the largest and most-dangerous neo-Nazi skinhead groups in the United States, is sponsoring the 25th annual gathering after patching up differences with a former rival, the equally violent Vinlanders Social Club.

Both skinhead groups appear to be strengthening ties with so-called outlaw motorcycle clubs – bikers who say they are part of the “1 percent” crowd and pride themselves on a toughness that borders or crosses into criminality — according to information developed by the Southern Poverty Law Center. “We expect to see bikers at this year’s event,” said Mark Potok, senior fellow at the SPLC.

Potok also said that the location of the event reflected new strength in the region. “The fact that it’s planned for Boise suggests that Hammerskin Nation is growing stronger in the Pacific Northwest than it has been for years,” he said.

The exact location of this year’s Hammerfest hasn’t been announced and its promoters aren’t talking. Promoters are expected to use social networking sites and word of mouth to identify to location just hours before the event begins.

Jeff Basterrechea, of the Boise Police Department’s gang unit, told the Idaho Statesman that groups like Hammerskin Nation typically don’t announce the location in advance “because they believe other groups will sabotage them,” the newspaper reported. “They’re so controversial, they’ll wait until the last moment to advertise where the concert will be,” he said.

Often, militant anti-racist groups attempt to seek out white power music venues in order to prevent the bands from playing. Occasionally, violence has broken out between the so-called anti-fascists and the neo-Nazi rock enthusiasts.

Adam Park, a spokesman for the City of Boise, told the Los Angeles Times that the city already has received phone calls from citizens concerned about the white supremacy event. “We’ll be talking with the police and monitoring this closely to ensure that if there is an event like this, that there’s no negative repercussions from it,” Park said. “But in this country we have free speech rights, and if an organization, even one espousing some pretty hateful and vile beliefs, wants to put on an event, then that’s something that we have to let proceed,” he said.

Hammerskin Nation — whose members are known as Hammerskins — is a nationwide skinhead federation with six regional factions, some with multiple chapters. The regional groups are the Confederate Hammerskins, the Midland Hammerskins, the Northern Hammerskins, the Western Hammerskins, the Eastern Hammerskins and the apparently revivified Northwest Hammerskins. The group appears to have new chapters in Boise, Pennsylvania and San Diego, Calif.

Hammerfest is an opportunity for the racist gang to promote its message – with the hope of attracting young recruits – through racist skinhead music bearing a violent message directed at Jews, black and gay people, and the “Zionist Occupied Government” — the federal government, which most American neo-Nazis see as having been taken over by Jews. A flyer promoting Saturday’s event says this year’s bands will include Blue Eyed Devils, Thirteen Knots, Chaos 88, Rebel Devils and Fucc Face 88, along with “international guests not to be missed.”

The violence often associated with the Hammerskins and the white power music scene generally was brought dramatically to light early this August, when a man named Wade M. Page went on a rampage at a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wis., where he killed six people and wounded three others before he died during a shootout with police. Page had played with a series of bands including Blue Eyed Devils and he was a recently “patched” member of the Northern Hammerskins.

  • Charlie

    I don’t mean to judge the opinion of others, but it is a shame that our city will be tarnished with a festival celebrating the hatred in peoples heart. I realize that it is difficult to coexist at times, but does that really mean we can’t over come our differences?

  • Kiwiwriter

    “Kiwi, I am quite aware that the SPLC has wrote about them. However, no pro-White (Nazi, Racist, Supremacist, etc) leader meets up with leaders of nations as does Farrakhan (met with Iranian president and received money from Libyan leader for Mosque Maryam), none has crowds of support when he goes and gives speeches, and none speaks regularly at universities, as does Farrakhan. You say 8th grade but this is quite serious.”

    Actually, David Duke certainly has met with leaders of nations…in fact, he met with the President of Iran when he went there for a Holocaust Denial conference! Same guy as Farrakhan! And SPLC has hammered Farrakhan considerably in its works, including for its bizarre alliance with Scientology.

    And the White Nationalists do show up at universities. In this blog you will find Jared Taylor speaking at Towson University in Maryland. He’s going to Texas A&M next. If there’s one thing college students like to do, it’s stir up controversy. Something to do with entering adulthood, I think.

    Anyway, you’re getting your gouge on rap music’s Islamic links from the Council of Conservative Citizens, which was last seen endorsing segregation of everything from drinking fountains to universities to preserve segregation in the South and all of America. Real classy people.

    I can remember people caterwauling about how horrible Elvis Presley was for the way he shook his hips on TV, and how infuriated everyone was about the Beatles, when they came here in 1964 and performed on the “Ed Sullivan Show.” Wearing suits and ties. Yeah, real revolutionary.

    Now we look on those times as the “Good Old Days,” and America’s “last time of innocence.” I look at the newspapers and see Cold War, civil rights struggles, a growing conflict in Vietnam, and assassinations. There is no such thing as the “Good Old Days.” (Except the 1998 New York Yankees)

  • aadila

    Ah the CoCC…the same racist group that was documented recruiting members at a Tea Party event in Florida, as I recall? You know, the Tea Party racists that the Tea Party insists aren’t there (along with all the people of color they claim are there but are never really seen or heard from in any significant numbers).

    So, just to connect the dots, if one African American shows up at a Tea Party rally, the Tea Party is suddenly the party of ethnic diversity.

    But when known racists like the CofCC show up on a recruiting drive in a booth (!), the Tea Party is somehow not a racist organization.

    Conservatives have such amazing flexibility with ethics for moral absolutists.

  • Erika

    Aron, you obviously need some work in your “guilt by association” skills :)

    Meanwhile, Wayne’s source for his scary Moslem rapper list is easy enough to tell – go to Google and enter in the following search terms rapper and member and “Nation of Islam” and look what the very first result is (and note the almost identical language to Wayne’s):

    The CofCC website. Yes, the very same people who back when they were known as the Citizens Counsel in the 1950s were telling people that rock and roll was evil jungle music.

    (sorry, no actual link, the CofCC’s website caused my computer to crash but its easy enough to find)

  • Aron

    Erika, you just blew my mind. I hadn’t even thought about that.

    Granted, I didn’t read Wayne’s comments all that closely. So maybe that explains it.

  • Erika

    Aron, wouldn’t it be kind of redundant for Wayne to have both NWA and Ice Cube on his scare list? :)

  • Aron


    It’s NWA or it’s nuffin’. Just sayin’.

    Straight Outta Compton has finally made me accept my identity as a poor black man. Even though I am a white Jewish guy from upper-middle class roots.

    (I really hope this does not come across as racist as I fear it does. And if it does, I hope you guys know me well enough to understand that I’m joking. Because I’m actually a First Nationer from the Northwest Territory. xD)

  • Erika

    Wayne, how are we possibly going to take your scare list seriously when you omitted Public Enemy? Come on, sweetie..

  • aadila

    Saw other comment about Snoop Dogg. He stopped weed in 2002 for your information. Don’t be getting fresh.

    Wayne honey, pass by the trailer and take a whiff.

  • Aron

    Wayne, I know that you referred to me by name. Then you went and made yourself look silly by calling me ‘bro.’

    I am on a mobile device, same as you are. I presume you, too, have the ability to copy and paste URLs into comments. I know I do that all the time.

    We are willing to wait until you can back up your specious claims with hard evidence. Just don’t (pardon the vulgarity) piss down our backs and tell us it’s raining.

    Because it already is raining here in New England.

  • Reynardine

    Well, maybe not a Himmlerfest, but surely a Goebbelsfest. Howdy, Wayne.

  • Wayne

    I’m not out to do some scholarly paper, I’m just asking why the SPLC doesn’t address the issue of plenty black celebrities and their support and/or membership with the Nation of Islam. This is a comment on a blog, not an article on a website. And I am posting via mobile, not behind a computer screen as I suspect Kiwiwriter and Aron are. Kiwi, you from NZ? 

    Aron, I already addressed you by name in my previous comment and then threw “bro” in afterward yet you go and try to highlight the latter over the former to use in some kind of an attack. You go jump to conclusions saying I should “go back to school”. I already know duty rests upon the person making the claim, but one thing the SPLC has is time unlike most of us in the real word, and hence they come out with their publications and post their anti-Right posts on this blog. It is definitely something researching into, is it not?

    Kiwi, I am quite aware that the SPLC has wrote about them. However, no pro-White (Nazi, Racist, Supremacist, etc) leader meets up with leaders of nations as does Farrakhan (met with Iranian president and received money from Libyan leader for Mosque Maryam), none has crowds of support when he goes and gives speeches, and none speaks regularly at universities, as does Farrakhan. You say 8th grade but this is quite serious.  

    One reason people are ideological racists is because they see a double-standard that they don’t see addressed, and they see “ironic hypocrisy”. That just makes them more frustrated and they become even more involved in the “Movement” and the small things get to them and they start to even more believe they are fighting for truth and “freedom” and “fairness” among other things.

    Saw other comment about Snoop Dogg. He stopped weed in 2002 for your information. Don’t be getting fresh. :),2933,502887,00.html


  • aadila

    Snoop Dog part of the NOI?

    Wayne, “bro”, Snoop Dog is more or less an official member of Willy Nelson’s family. He smokes more pot than…well…Willy Nelson. Does that sound like a devout radical Whitey-hating muslim to you? Please, Wayne. Lay off the bath salts.

  • Aron

    Wayne, first of all, my name is Aron. Not ‘bro.’

    Second of all, that’s not how claims work. You can’t make a claim and tell ME to do the research. It is up to the claimant to provide enough evidence to support their position.

    You might consider going back to school and spending less time with your fratties, bra.

  • Kiwiwriter

    Hey, Wayner, if you look closely through this blog and SPLC’s magazines and this web page, you’ll find numerous times they have hammered black separatists, the Nation of Islam, Islamic terrorists, and their ilk.

    Now, I suggest you provide some proof of your ridiculous claim, with references and source notes, like you did last week in your 8th grade term paper.

  • Wayne

    Aron, if only I were! Unfortunately I’m posting comment via mobile so can’t, but I keep track of the NOI on Facebook and gave done my own research into the mainstream Hip Hop artists and it’s quite true, or else I wouldn’t post it. Busta Rhymes is part of an even more radical spin off sect from the NOI, and Snoop Dogg converted a few years ago. Bone Thugz had a few members. Nas, Raekwon, Napolean, Rakim, Big Daddy Kane.. The deal is connections, I can name a lot more with connections. Bro, you’re gonna have to do some of your own research. 

  • Aron


    Care to provide some evidence to back up your claims? Because I’m pretty sure you’re lying.

  • Wayne

    One ironic thing is that at least two dozen mainstream Hip Hop artists are affiliated with the black supremacist Nation of Islam. Why doesn’t the SPLC do an article about that? Snoop Dogg, T-Pain, DJ Khaled, Ice Cube, Eve, Busta Rhymes, Bone Thugz, 2-PAC (diseased), etc.. These are the ironic hypocrisies that keep White separatists going. :) I know that if a White musician ever had an affiliation with say the World Church of the Creator, they would be completely blacklisted all while these rappers and more that have racist affiliations are promoted on magazines and television, etc..

  • Reynardine

    Proof of how tired I am: read title as, “Himmlerfest”…

  • Patricia

    These violent racists are not to ignored. That would only serve to condone, or to indirectly justify their spewing hatred. They are not simply “a group”, they are a violent criminal gang and ought to be treated as such.

  • Althea Hathaway

    Hello Good Friends & Associates of SPLC,
    Could you please add the button, the ability to repost your articles on my FB page. I am an opinion leader, an educator and civic activist and absolutely wish to share your incisive reporting in order to further educate and enlighten, to elevate and enrich our civil American society. I want to repost the Hammerfest neo-nazi event in Boise, ID. This is just plain inane, downright unacceptable in U.S.A. This alleged celebration of hatred and intolerance is beyond Freedom of Speech in our civil society.
    Thank kindly, Althea Hathaway, Oakland, Ca.

  • Roger

    Shadow Wolf@ I agree with you but you have to remember the intelligence level of these half wits is barely above primates. With one exception, Primates don’t treat their own the way these morons do.

    I also am not surprised that these extreme goups set up shop in Idaho. It has always been a haven for racist hate groups because it is generally over looked by the far right wing Republican party that rules the state. The majority of hate groups evolve from the right and the right is just one small step away from the same kind of loathing and hatred that these hate groups espouse.

  • Erika

    S. Willard, rap music like all forms of popular culture actually has many themes.

    Themes involving crime, murder, death, illicit sex, magic, religion, mythology, Satan, bragging about one’s skill, weapons, etc. have been staples of popular culture since antiquity. Rap music continues in that tradition talking about the same sort of themes that have long been staples of popular culture. People love tells of outlaws and criminals and they love tells of love and sex. They are popular in high culture – they are popular in low culture – they are popular in between culture. They are common themes even in the Bible.

    Thematically there is little difference between a 19th century murder ballad or a 18th century opera aria about adultorous sex and those found on a many gangsta rap songs. The difference would be one of language and level of explicitness. All culture has gotten more explicit over time.

    The gansta model of rap music became dominent for the same reason why people flocked to gangster movies in the 1930s – there is something about tales of crime and outlaws which the public finds fascinating. Even before that, people thrilled to the tale of Robin Hood or the Wagnerian operas based upon the Norse gods or tales of the Olympian gods which are filled with sex and violence. In the news media the mantra has long been “if it bleeds it leads.” There is nothing anyone can do to stop this – people have wanted to here stories of criminals and crimes since the beginning of recorded history. Rappers are just entertainers who give the crowd what they want to hear.

    Love and sex is also a dominant theme in rap as it is in every other form of popular music since the beginning of music.

    Rap also contains political content – some of which is pro-Black – again, so does every other form of music and culture. Like all culture it reflects its time and the concerns of its time. Since many rappers grew up poor people who hate rap often do not want that political message to get out since it is at odds with the myths of America that they want to perserve.

    Rap is just another form of music – there is good rap and there is bad rap. Just like there is good music and bad music of all types. The themes are varied but essentially they are about the same things which music has always been about. The best rap music like the best music of all varieties says something about the times which it was produced. The best rap music is also timeless in that it takes classic themes – such as that of the outlaw – and says something new or even an old tale in an interesting way about it.

  • aadila

    S. Williard

    The target audience of rap music is white people.

    I guess you got confused because the entertainers are black. Anyway, you just proved Shadow Wolf’s point. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the Western European culture is historically warlike, violent, and bloodthirsty. Particularly the Anglo-Saxons. In fact, it has been argued by scholars that the prevalence of gun violence in America is due primarily to the Anglo Saxon culture, a notion which I tend to agree with.

    Thank you please come again.

  • S.Willard

    @ Shadow Wolf…..isn’t that exactly what rap music does? Gang violence, drugs, guns, and disrespecting women, that is pretty much the lyrical content of every rap song made but I don’t hear you complaining about that you hypocrite.

  • Erika

    Aron, did you sell your custom “Arontime” gates in order to buy tickets? :P

    (sorry for such an obvious joke but i really don’t know anything else about MC Hammer)

    But seriously, we all know that if there was a real Hammerfest devoted to MC Hammer it would almost undoubtably get a much larger audience than the neo-nazi Hammerfest.

  • Shadow Wolf

    Racist skin head music has been around for decades. Don’t these boneheaded idiots get tired of the same old trite lyrical topics? It contains nothing but racial matters, white pride and violent misogyny (rape).

  • CoralSea

    I agree with Sam, Robert, and aadila regarding the desirability of a secular government. And Sam is correct — if the theocrats ever take charge, government won’t shrink (other than, say, the EEOC, the EPA, NOAA, OSHA, and other “non-Biblical” agencies) and will instead be bulked up to ensure the “correctness” of everyone’s behavior and beliefs. If people think the TSA is bad, wait until the proselytizers who come to your door will have the authority to question you about your beliefs or behavior and steer you in the right direction. (Although at least if they come to your home, you will be able to defend yourself with a letter opener or a nail clipper or some other “deadly weapon” that TSA would otherwise confiscate.

    As for Hammerfest; meh, I wasn’t planning to attend. I just hope they have enough port-a-potties to accommodate all of the sh$t being blared over the sound systems.

  • aadila

    As another religious practicant in the minority (if you can call my religion a religion, which is highly questionable) I have to agree with Robert Pinkerton that secularism is really the only way to go. The myth of the amoral athiest is generally perpetuated by the religious fanatic who has a hard time living up to her own credo.

    I also agree that a limited government would be best: we should for example, drastically scale back our military and end the zero-tolerance laws here and yon that serve primarily to fund private sector prisons and do little to maintain law and order. It would be nice if habeus corpus meant something in America too.

    Of course, sadly what the term “limited government” means for most Republicans is limiting the government’s action to what conservatives want, (i.e. limiting the ability of a secular democracy to stray from the millennial diktat of the Great White Right Winger in the Sky). .

  • Sam Molloy

    Mitch, maybe because I don’t fit into any convenient cubbyholes, but I get on websites with different opinions sometimes just to see what they are up to. I personally avoid anything too wild because they are – or should be – monitored by law enforcement. I don’t know everything and every group has a valid point sometimes.

  • Robert Pinkerton

    I must concur with Mr. Molloy. 2/10/12. As a member of a religious minority in a religiously pluralist context, I say secularism is the only way to get past contending bodies of myth and contending codes of believers’ conduct.

  • Reynardine

    Remember when all the potatoheads in Idaho used to just lie around and wait to be baked? Now, some of them even post comments on our threads.

    (Ezra: Butter! Sour cream! Sawmill gravy! Grrrrr!)

  • Aron

    Wait a moment. I bought tickets expecting a three hour plenary discussion regarding heteronormative theory applied to ‘Pumps and A Bump.’

    Erika, are you telling me that I was mislead? I had already gone out and had my solid gold toilet seat made into a gigantic medallion! What a waste of money :(

  • Mitch Beales

    Ezra_mead So what? Hatewatch says the concert is racist. Big deal. If you don’t like it, then don’t read Hatewatch and ESPECIALLY don’t post your bs here..

  • Sam Molloy

    Ithink, I’ve always thought the economic conservatives, I’m talking about strict Constitutionalists that believe in limited government and Libertarianism, should boot the religious nuts out. A philosophy of limited government is incompatible with Theocracy.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    There will most certainly be violence, and it will be between the participants.

  • Erika

    Anyone who shows up at Hammerfest expecting a celebration of the music of MC Hammer will no doubt be very disappointed.

    But i still say that Youth for Western Civilization (YWC) sounds like it should be the name of a band playing on this bill.

  • Ezra_mead

    So what? a group of people are having a concert. Big deal. If you don’t like their music, then don’t go.

  • Kiwiwriter

    I hope there is no violence…even between the participants. No matter how awful these people are, they do not deserve to die or be maimed, even by their brethren. “Any man’s death diminishes me,” as John Donne wrote.

    I will not snicker and say, “No loss” over any deaths or violence caused at this event. If I do so, I become what I behold, and that is wrong.

  • Ithink

    Rush Limbaugh said something fascinating if not breathlessly cynical last week when he projected that if Obama wins the election this November, it would be the end of the Republican Party (no surprise there, as it tends to dissipate at the presence or arrival of the black guy)…

    One thing I’d like to take note of is is how increased and incensed this nonsense from the Troglodytes will become come Election time; one can only hope if and when the American Right coalesces and/or splinters into another political party of major electoral power, they’ll be quite a bit smarter about embracing the complex but grand diversity that the USA is surly becoming.