by Jessica Carreras
A scheduled performance at the Majestic Theater by Jamaican “murder music” Reggae singer Buju Banton has been canceled due to an outpouring of disapproval from the community.
The cancellation comes in the midst of a national battle between Banton’s publicists at the LGBT community, which has rallied across the U.S. to make sure that Banton’s music never makes it to the stage.
Banton is most well known in his home country and abroad for his hit song “Boom Bye Bye,” which advocates for the killing and maiming of gays. The song, first recorded in 1988, has caused both bad and good publicity for Banton throughout his career – and has also been known to be an anthem of sorts for anti-gay activists and citizens in Jamaica.
Announcement of Banton’s original full U.S. tour, hosted by promoters Live Nation and AEG Live, prompted an open letter and many phone calls from the Gay Liberation Network and supporters in August.
It was a short-lived victory, however, for gay rights groups when the concert promoters canceled several shows in large cities.
Some media outlets wrongly reported that the entire tour was canceled.
But Banton’s Gargamel label recently announced that the tour was on with more than 30 cities booked, including the Detroit date.
Booking agents at The Majestic noted that Banton has performed at their location before, but with no negative response or call for cancellation by the LGBT community.
This time, however, Majestic staff have responded to calls from the LGBT community by canceling the show and replacing it with an LGBT awareness concert, to be held in the complex’s venue The Magic Stick on Sept. 30, Banton’s original date.
“Thank you to all those who contacted the Majestic Theatre group expressing your disdain over Banton’s Detroit pending performance,” the Triangle Foundation said of the cancellation in a statement. “The Majestic has been friendly to the LGBT community for many years, and they expressed that they wanted to do the right thing.”
“(Majestic owner Dave) Zainea told us he was in a tight spot with contract cancellation fees, but really wanted to do the right thing,” Affirmations said in a statement. “Times are tight and we know his heart is in the right place so we offered to help him organize a benefit and LGBT awareness concert as a
The lineup for the replacement concert has not yet been announced, but tickets for the event are $10 and are available at the Majestic complex, or at the door of the event.
More details on the event are forthcoming. Check back on https://www.pridesource.com, or contact the Triangle Foundation, Transgender Detroit or Affirmations for more details.
Any musicians interested in playing pro-bono for the show should contact Kathleen LaTosch at 248-398-7105 or [email protected]