Reggae and hip-hop singer Matisyahu confirmed his perform in the Spanish Rototom SunSplash, one of Europe’s largest reggae festivals. His gig scheduled for this Saturday Aug 22nd.
Matisyahu said Friday on Facebook, “Today music wins. I have always believed in the power of music to unite all people, regardless of religion, politics or geography. This was an excruciating decision, as I felt that my core, essential being was being used as a pawn for political convenience. It is my deep conviction however that acceptance and the ability for rebirth allow us to move forward.”
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The organizers last week apologized for canceling his gig following an hustle by pro-Palestinian and Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) groups. They accused him of being a Zionist who supports the Israeli “apartheid and ethnic cleansing”.
The 36-year-old performer who belonged to the Chabad-Lubavitch movement, has publicly supported Israel, but he is an American Jew and is not Israeli.
The festival orgenazers discion criticized by Jewish groups, by the US and Israeli embassies in Spain and by the Spanish government.
On Wednesday, the organizers apologized to the singer and inviting him to perform at the week-long festival.
The organizers said in a statement on Wednesday: “Rototom SunSplash admits that it made a mistake, due to… the campaign of pressure, coercion and threats employed by the BDS Pais Valencia which made it think that the normal functioning of the festival could be threatened.”
The singer also paid tribute on Facebook to people who had expressed thier outrage “My deepest thanks to the worldwide community for rallying to the cause of musical freedom. Most of all, thank you to my incredible fans and to so many people of all faiths who refused to remain silent in the name of artistic freedom. This is your victory.”