Pearl Jam, Boston cancel North Carolina shows over new LGBT law

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Credit: Pearl Jam Facebook Page

RALEIGH, N.C. — Pearl Jam is canceling its concert in North Carolina later this month because of the state’s new law on LGBT rights.

In a statement issued Monday on the band’s website, Pearl Jam called the new law “a despicable piece of legislation that encourages discrimination against an entire group of American citizens.”

The statement says the band has communicated with local groups and will give them money to oppose the law.

Pearl Jam was scheduled to perform April 20 at PNC Arena in Raleigh. The band just played a sold out concert in South Carolina on Friday.

A new anti-discrimination ordinance in the state would, among other things, force transgender people to use bathrooms corresponding to the gender listed on their birth certificates instead of the ones with which they identify.

The rock group Boston also canceled its appearances scheduled for May 4, 5 and 6 in Raleigh “in order to raise awareness, and protest in the strongest terms, the recent passage of HB2, the so-called ‘North Carolina bathroom law,'” according to band founder Tom Scholz.

Bruce Springsteen led the charge for musicians canceling shows in the state based on the law, saying, “I feel that this is a time for me and the band to show solidarity for those freedom fighters.”

Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy also announced a ban on travel to North Carolina–and Mississippi–based on the discriminatory laws.

A few days later singer Bryan Adams followed suit and canceled his tour stop in Mississippi, which passed a similar bill, saying, “I cannot in good conscience perform in a state where certain people are being denied their civil rights due to their sexual orientation.”

Meanwhile, Jimmy Buffett has decided to play his planned shows because “I am not going to let stupidity or bigotry trump fun for my loyal fans this year.” He said he’d reconsider scheduling future concerts in the state unless the “stupid law” is repealed.