United Airlines In A PR Nightmare After “United Breaks Guitars” Music Video Goes Viral

In the spring of 2008, musician Dave Carroll and other passengers watched from the plane as klutzy United Airlines baggage handlers in Chicago broke his $3,500 Taylor acoustic guitar on the tarmac.

After the incident, Carroll contacted the airline to ask for compensation. For the next few months, Carroll was given the runaround until United Airlines finally said they wouldn’t pay for the damages. Before hanging up the phone for the last time with United Airlines, Carroll made a promise.

United Breaks Guitars
Screenshot from the “United Breaks Guitars” music video.

“I promised the last person (from United Airlines) to finally say no to compensation, Ms. Irlweg, that I would write and produce three songs about my experience with United Airlines and make videos for each to be viewed online by anyone in the world,” Carroll said on his website.

“United Breaks Guitars” Music Video

It’s been almost a year since Carroll’s Taylor guitar was smashed on the tarmac, but he’s finally making good on his promise. This week, Carroll uploaded a song he recorded with his band Sons of Maxwell to YouTube. It’s called “United Breaks Guitars.”


Here are a few lyrics from the chorus:

United, United
You broke my Taylor guitar
United, United
Some big help you are
You broke it, you should fix it
You’re liable just admit it
I should have flown with someone else or gone by car
‘Cause United breaks guitars

YouTube Video For “United Breaks Guitars” Goes Viral

Unfortunately for United Airlines, the music video and the story behind it has caught the attention of the Internet. “United Breaks Guitars” is currently the top link on Reddit.com and Carroll’s song has prompted an onslaught of negative comments about United Airlines across the Internet from Twitter to YouTube. Our favorite so far is “Revenge is a dish best served with country accompaniment.”

Doesn’t United Airlines know that the customer is always right? The amount of money and time United Airlines will have to spend dealing with this PR nightmare will far exceed $3500.

United Breaks Guitars: Additional Song Versions

Dave’s first song “United Breaks Guitars” was so popular that he did two additional songs. You can definitely add this incident to the list of ultimate PR nightmares.

Via methodshop

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