The global unease felt by Israel’s treatment of Palestine has stretched to the music industry. Elvis Costello has announced that he is canceling two upcoming shows in Caesarea on June 30 and July 1, because he believed people may suspect him of implicitly supporting the Israeli government as a result of playing.
“One lives in hope that music is more than mere noise, filling up idle time, whether intending to elate or lament,” he writes on his website. “Then there are occasions when merely having your name added to a concert schedule may be interpreted as a political act that resonates more than anything that might be sung and it may be assumed that one has no mind for the suffering of the innocent.”
“I am also keenly aware of the sensitivity of these themes in the wake of so many despicable acts of violence perpetrated in the name of liberation. Some will regard all of this an unknowable without personal experience but if these subjects are actually too grave and complex to be addressed in a concert, then it is also quite impossible to simply look the other way. I offer my sincere apologies for any disappointment to the advance ticket holders as well as to the organizers.”
Costello’s decision to cancel his shows in Israel come at a time when other artists, including Carlos Santana and Gil Scott-Heron, have taken similar action. It’s possible that this will mark the beginning of a musical boycott of the country, which would mirror the moves made by musicians against the Apartheid regime in South Africa in the 1980s.
[Pic from here]