While performing his song “Set Me Free” in Portland, Ore., a fan in the audience shouted “f–k Olivia Rodrigo,” prompting Bassett to shoot a disapproving look into the crowd before rolling his eyes and continuing to play the piano.
Watch the awkward moment below. Warning: Video contains strong language.
“Imagine Joshua Bassett rolling his eyes at u. that’s when u know ur wrong,” one fan commented under the video.
Aside from being plain rude, the fan who shouted couldn’t have picked a more inappropriate song to interrupt. “Set Me Free” is a piano-driven ballad that helped Bassett process sexual abuse he was a victim of as a child and teen.
“It’s an anthem for me and the sort of people who’ve held pain and power over me my whole life. You’ve taken so much from me, but you don’t get to take all of me,” Bassett explained, via Genius.
However, some fans have interpreted the song in a different light, instead connecting it to Bassett’s alleged former relationship with his High School Musical: The Musical: The Series co-star.
Bassett and Rodrigo were rumored to have dated between 2019 and 2020 before calling it quits. In January 2021, Rodrigo released her breakup anthem “drivers license,” which launched her soaring solo music career.
Following the rumored breakup, Bassett allegedly briefly dated fellow Disney star-turned-musician Sabrina Carpenter, thus creating a Gen Z Disney love triangle reminiscent of Miley, Nick and Selena in the late ’00s. Subsequently, the young stars’ fanbases became pitted against each other.
However, in 2022, Bassett and Rodrigo appeared together at the HSMTMTS premiere, squashing rumors of any bad blood between them.
Unfortunately, fans yelling disrespectfully about women during concerts has seemingly become a trend.
On March 5, Justin Bieber was a surprise guest during Don Toliver’s Rolling Loud set. Fans in attendance took the recent social media drama between Selena Gomez and Hailey Bieber too far by shouting “f–k Hailey Bieber,” who is Justin’s wife, at Justin while he was on stage.
The demeaning words quickly became a crowd chant.
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