Matisyahu made a statement on Facebook addressing the scandal that has emerged after the organizers of the Rototom Sunsplash Reggae Festival cancelled his appearance there:

“The festival organizers contacted me because they were getting pressure from the BDS movement. They wanted me to write a letter, or make a video, stating my positions on Zionism and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to pacify the BDS people. I support peace and compassion for all people. My music speaks for itself, and I do not insert politics into my music. Music has the power to transcend the intellect, ideas, and politics, and it can unite people in the process. The festival kept insisting that I clarify my personal views; which felt like clear pressure to agree with the BDS political agenda. Honestly it was appalling and offensive, that as the one publicly Jewish-American artist scheduled for the festival they were trying to coerce me into political statements. Were any of the other artists scheduled to perform asked to make political statements in order to perform? No artist deserves to be put in such a situation simply to perform his or her art. Regardless of race, creed, country, cultural background, etc, my goal is to play music for all people. As musicians that is what we seek. – Blessed Love, Matis”

There’s been no word from Festival organizers about whether or not other artists appearing at the Festival will also be asked to declare a loyalty oath to BDS. For instance, Barrington Levy who is performing on the main stage on August 18th has performed in Israel as has Lee “Scratch” Perry who is performing on the main stage on August 21st. And what about all the artists with Jewish management and musical collaborators? If I were BDS, I’d be all up in that trying to find out the hidden Zionists. Get on it yo!

Follow me

About the author

ck

Founder and Publisher of Jewlicious, David Abitbol lives in Jerusalem with his wife, newborn daughter and toddler son. Blogging as "ck" he's been blocked on twitter by the right and the left, so he's doing something right.

7 Comments

Leave a Comment